If your knee pain is so severe that it makes you limp when you walk or try to climb up or down the staircase, you are not alone. Osteoarthritis is a common joint disease that makes millions of people suffer from knee and other joint pain. However, knee pain should not restrict you from going on about your daily activities or prevent you from doing things you enjoy.
It is important to know about the disease to get the best shot at recovery. Here are 4 things you must know about this chronic condition:
- Osteoarthritis is a condition that results in damage to the cartilage, lining and fluid of a joint, ultimately affecting the bones. Joint cartilage covers the ends of the bones cushioning the joint. Without this protection, bones suffer friction and rub against each other. With time, pieces of bone or cartilage may even break lose and start floating in the joint. Bone spurs develop at the ends of the bones. All this causes swelling, tenderness, stiffness and pain.
- Osteoarthritis is not only mechanical wearing out of the joint wears due to age. The condition has multiple risk factors, like family history and being overweight, traumatic injury and chronic overuse and stress that can put pressure on the knee joint.
- While there is no cure for osteoarthritis, there are number of surgical and nonsurgical treatment options. Physical therapy, medications and exercise can help in the early stages. Steroid and hyaluronic acid injections can help in more advance cases. Chronic pain and disability can be relieved through joint replacement surgery.