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Knee Osteoarthritis FAQs

Knee osteoarthritis (OA) is a common condition that can cause pain, stiffness, and swelling in your knees. It affects millions of people worldwide, and navigating information about it can feel overwhelming. Our FAQ section addresses frequently asked questions about knee OA, from understanding the symptoms and causes to exploring treatment options and managing daily life. Whether you’re newly diagnosed or looking for more information, we aim to empower you with knowledge about knee OA.

What is osteoarthritis of the knee?

Knee osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease characterized by the breakdown of cartilage in the knee joint, leading to pain, stiffness, and decreased mobility.

What is the difference between osteoarthritis and arthritis in the knee?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a specific type of arthritis characterized by joint degeneration, primarily affecting weight-bearing joints like the knees. Arthritis is a broader term that encompasses a group of more than 100 different types of joint disorders or diseases.

What causes osteoarthritis in the knee?

Knee osteoarthritis can be caused by a variety of factors including age, genetics, obesity, joint injury or trauma, overuse, and underlying medical conditions.

What are the symptoms of knee osteoarthritis?

Symptoms of knee osteoarthritis include pain, stiffness, swelling, tenderness, reduced range of motion, and a grating sensation during movement.

What are the 4 stages of osteoarthritis in the knee?
  • Stage 1: Minor:  Slight cartilage damage with occasional pain and stiffness.
  • Stage 2: Mild: Increased cartilage loss, more frequent pain and swelling.
  • Stage 3: Moderate: Significant cartilage loss, persistent pain, and reduced mobility.
  • Stage 4: Severe: Extensive cartilage damage, severe pain, stiffness, and joint deformity.
When should I see a doctor for knee osteoarthritis?

If you are experiencing persistent knee pain, swelling, stiffness, or if your symptoms interfere with daily activities despite self-care measures, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor.

How is knee osteoarthritis diagnosed?

Diagnosis of knee osteoarthritis typically involves a physical examination, review of medical history, imaging tests (such as X-rays or MRI), and sometimes joint fluid analysis.

What is the best exercise for osteoarthritis of the knee?

These exercises can help manage knee osteoarthritis, but we suggest consulting with your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen.

  • Walking: Low-impact, improves joint mobility, and strengthens leg muscles.
  • Cycling: Gentle on the knees, improves flexibility, and cardiovascular health.
  • Swimming: Low-impact, strengthens muscles without stressing the joints.
  • Strength Training: Builds leg muscles for better joint stability.
  • Tai Chi and Yoga: Enhances flexibility, balance, and relaxation.
  • Range of Motion Exercises: Improves knee flexibility and mobility.
What lifestyle changes can help manage knee osteoarthritis?

Lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods, managing stress, avoiding excessive repetitive movements, and using proper joint protection techniques can help manage knee osteoarthritis symptoms.

What is the best treatment for osteoarthritis in knees?

The best treatment for osteoarthritis in knees varies depending on the severity of the condition. Common treatments for knee osteoarthritis include exercise, physical therapy, medications, injections (such as corticosteroids or hyaluronic acid), and lifestyle modifications. If these conservative methods are not successful, we recommend genicular artery embolization

GAE is a minimally invasive procedure that targets the genicular arteries, which supply blood to the knee joint. By blocking these arteries, genicular artery embolization can reduce pain and inflammation associated with knee osteoarthritis. It’s a same day procedure with fewer complications, shorter recovery time, and lasts for 1 to 3 years.

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