Treatment_Osteoarthritis_Knee_Pain_Physiotherapy_Eva_Phsiocare

Treating Osteoarthritis of Knee: Surgery versus Physiotherapy

Introduction

Osteoarthritis is a situation that involves the wear and tear of the cartilage / natural cushioning between joints. The shock-absorbing capacities of the cartilage are reduced and results in the bones at the joints rubbing against each other causing pain, swelling, stiffness, inability to move, and emergence of bone spurs.
Knee pain is a standout amongst the most well-known yet ignored musculoskeletal conditions. Osteoarthritis is one of the leading causes of knee pain. While it can happen even in youngsters, the possibility of osteoarthritis ascends after the age of 45. Women are more prone towards it. Cases of osteoarthritis are rapidly increasing in India due to the changing lifestyles and eating habits.

Causes

The most common causes for knee osteoarthritis include factors of age; weight gain; heredity factors; gender (women above 55); repetitive stress injuries such as kneeling, squatting, or lifting heavy weights (55 pounds or more); athletics involving soccer, tennis, or long-distance running; and other illness such as rheumatoid arthritis, metabolic disorders (iron overload) and excess growth hormones.

Treatment: Surgery Versus Physiotherapy

Surgery is said to be the last resort for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee. This is because in a revolutionary study on meniscal tears and the treatment of Osteoarthritis by the New England Journal of Medicine, it was resolved that there were no irrelevant contrasts between patients settling on surgery over an escalated regiment of non-intrusive treatment / physiotherapy.

The differences between the two procedures include:

  1. While surgical procedures involve arthroscopy, osteotomy, and arthroplasty; physiotherapy includes hamstring stretches, calf stretches, standing quadriceps stretches, seated leg raises, step-ups, straight-leg lifts, single-leg dips, hamstring curls, wall squats, half squats, knee stabilization series, static hamstring contractions, sit/stands, heel cord stretches, leg extensions, hip abductions and adductions and leg presses with resistance bands, in accordance to the physiotherapist’s guidance.
  2. The underlying problem with surgery is the possibility of adverse effects / risks due to intrusive procedures. Due to this, physiotherapy being a non-intrusive technique is considered safer.
  3. Surgery focuses on realignment of bones in joints, artificially, by the addition of artificial parts, cutting of excess bone, and general realignment. Physiotherapy, however, focuses on restoration of mobility and strengthening of muscles, in addition to weight management. Stretching, strengthening, and flexibility exercises, along with proprioception and balance exercises, and joint mobilization and manipulation, are effective in pain management, lowering inflammation, and restoring optimal balance after an injury.
  4. Most patients can administer to themselves and resume typical everyday exercises inside 6 weeks and drive inside 4 to 6 weeks. It might take 3 months to a whole year to completely recoup and acknowledge the advantages of knee surgery. Physiotherapy, on the other hand, needs no special recovery time and it spans over a period of 6 to 12 weeks only.
  5. In addition to all of this, it is to be acknowledged that surgeries are costly unlike physiotherapy.

Conclusion

Despite the problems posed by surgery, it is a definite tool in the treatment of osteoarthritis of knee, but only recommended in extreme conditions. Physiotherapy is in every way the best procedure to go about it. Physiotherapy is aimed toward biomechanical corrections of the affected knee, thereby preventing the osteoarthritis from taking a serious shape. It’s therapeutic nature and capacity to provide relief often postpones the need for surgery or dismisses it altogether. We at Eva Physiocare are working on preventive care that includes diet management in the integrated wellness programme.

Vicious Cycle Of Knee Pain And Obesity

A noted medical journal Lancet has ranked India 3rd in the row after U.S. and China for the highest number of people suffering from obesity. To note it further, Indians with this nutritional problem have got doubled in the past 10 years, according to the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-4). Unaware of the vicious effects of obesity on overall health, we are paying very less attention to this concern. The Poor lifestyles and lack of exercise have pushed many under the reel of excessive weight, thereby developing joint disorders and knee pain. Such disorders are increasing among children and adolescents at an alarming rate these days, which calls for a serious action-plan to save the generation.

ROLE OF HEALTHY WEIGHT LOSS

If you are falling in the list of people suffering from chronic knee pain, then even a pound lost through a healthy weight loss plan can ease your suffering and reduce the risk of Osteoarthritis (OA). A healthy weight loss will help fight the suffering and regain the balance in two ways:

  1. It lessens the pressure- It’s important to decrease the level of pressure on the knees to avoid the wear and tear of the knees. With every pound lost, one can lessen the load of 4 pounds on the knees.
  2. It shrinks the inflammation in the body- The habit of over-eating triggers frequent immune responses causing inflammation in the body which leads to acute knee and joint problems. A study suggests that just a 10 percent reduction in weight can significantly lower inflammation in the body, thereby lowering the risk of Osteoarthritis (OA).

PHYSIOTHERAPY AS A RESCUE

In knee pain or Osteoarthritis, the muscles around the knees become swollen and stiff, making it painful to walk or even step down from the bed. Where all other types of exercises fail, Physiotherapy comes as a rescue for the knees and joint disorders. It improves the knee function and makes it easier to walk, bend, sit, kneel or even squat. There are various passive and active treatments that keep you going, such as, Cold therapy, Heat therapy, hydrotherapy, strengthening and flexibility exercises. Many medical researchers have proved that combination of manual and supervised therapies can eliminate the need for surgery. Voila, it’s a delight to the people suffering from acute knee pain.

BEHAVIOUR MOTIVATION TO REACH GOALS

For marking a paradigm shift in our behaviours, we must first let go the fear of failure. A precise and systematic goal achieving plan will mostly work with the strong backing of a regular education and motivation. Therefore, we are here to lubricate, recover and strengthen your knees and let you live happily!