Sign and Symptoms
Knee arthritis symptoms tend to progress as the condition worsens.
The common symptoms of knee arthritis are: 1.Pain with activities 2. Limited range of motion
3. Stiffness of the knee 4. Swelling of the joint 5. Muscle weakness and atrophy (muscle on front of thigh) due to inactivity or stiffness
5. A feeling the joint may "give out" 6. Deformity of the joint (knock-knees or bow-legs)
Generally the pain associated with arthritis develops gradually. The joint may become stiff and swollen, making it difficult to bend or straighten the knee.
Pain and swelling are worse in the morning or after a period of inactivity. Pain may also increase after activities such as walking, stair climbing, or kneeling.
The pain may often cause a feeling of weakness in the knee, resulting in a "locking" or "buckling."
Structure and function of Knee
The knee is a joint that has three compartments. This joint has an inner
(medial) and an outer (lateral) compartment. The kneecap (patella) joins the femur to form a third compartment called the patellofemoral joint.
The thighbone (femur) meets the large shinbone (tibia), forming the main knee joint.
The knee joint is surrounded by a joint capsule with ligaments strapping the inside and outside of the joint (collateral ligaments)
as well as crossing within the joint (cruciate ligaments). These ligaments provide stability and strength to the knee joint.
The meniscus is a thickened cartilage pad between the two joints formed by the femur and tibia. The
meniscus acts as a smooth surface for motion and absorbs the load of the body above the knee when standing. The knee joint is
surrounded by fluid-filled sacs called bursae which serve as gliding surfaces that reduce friction of the tendons.
Below the kneecap, there is a large tendon (patellar tendon which attaches to the front of
the tibia bone. There are large blood vessels passing through the area behind the knee (referred to as the popliteal space). The large muscles
of the thigh move the knee. In the front of the thigh, the quadriceps muscles extend the knee joint. In the back of the
thigh, the hamstring muscles flex the knee. The knee also rotates slightly under guidance of muscles of the thigh.
The knee functions to allow movement of the leg and is critical to
normal walking .The knee flexes normally to a maximum of 135 degrees and extends to 0 degrees. The
bursae, or fluid-filled sacs, serve as gliding surfaces for the tendons to reduce the force of friction as these tendons move. The knee is a
weight-bearing joint. Each meniscus serves to evenly load the surface during weight-bearing and also aids in disbursing joint fluid for joint lubrication.
The knee functions to allow movement of the leg and to normal walking. The bursae, or fluid-filled sacs, serve as gliding surfaces for the tendons
to reduce the force of friction as these tendons move. The knee is a weight-bearing joint. Each meniscus serves to evenly load the surface
during weight-bearing and also aids in disbursing joint fluid for joint lubrication.
Risk factors and causes of Knee Arthritis
A combination of factors that can cause to develop the arthritis of the knee. The factors include muscle weakness, obesity, heredity, joint injury or stress, constant exposure to the cold, and
aging. Cartilage in the knee begins to break down and leaves the bones of the knee rubbing against each other as you walk. Persons who work in
a place that applies repetitive stress on the knees are also at a high risk of developing arthritis of the knee. Bone deformities increase the risk for
osteoarthritis of the knee since the joints are already malformed and may contain defective cartilage. Having gout, rheumatoid arthritis,
Paget's disease of bone or septic arthritis can increase your risk of developing osteoarthritis.
Types of Knee Arthritis
There are three basic types of arthritis that may affect the knee joint:
Osteoarthritis: Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of knee arthritis. OA is
usually a slowly progressive degenerative disease in which the joint cartilage gradually wears away. It most often affects middle-aged and
the people in old age.
Rheumatoid Arthritis: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory type of arthritis that can
destroy the joint cartilage. RA can occur at any age. RA generally affects both knees.
Post-traumatic Arthritis: Post-traumatic arthritis can develop after an injury to the knee. This
type of arthritis is similar to osteoarthritis and may develop years after a fracture, ligament injury, or meniscus tear.
As part of the diagnosis process, you may
go through various lab tests such as antinuclear antibody tests, joint fluid
tests or erythrocyte sedimentation tests. The tests for right diagnosis include:
* Joint space narrowing,
* Osteophyte formation at the joint margins
* Subchondral Sclerosis (new subchondral bone formation in response to stress on the bone)
* Subchondral Cyst formation (joint fluid under pressure gets into cracks in the cartilage)
1.Lifestyle Modification: Lifestyle modifications can include losing weight, switching from
running or jumping exercises to swimming or cycling, and minimizing activities that aggravate the condition, such as climbing stairs.
Simple weight loss can reduce stress on weight bearing joints, such as
the knee. Losing weight can result in reduced pain and increased function, particularly in walking.
Your knees are your biggest weight-bearing joints, every extra
pound you carry increases the stress on them.
2. Exercise: Exercises can help increase range of motion and flexibility as well as
help strengthen the muscles in the leg. Physical therapy and exercise
are often effective in reducing pain and improving function. Your physician or a physical therapist can help develop an individualized
exercise program that meets your needs and lifestyle
3. Supportive Devices: Using supportive devices, such as a cane, wearing energy-absorbing shoes
or inserts, or wearing a brace or knee sleeve can be helpful. Some research studies have focused on the use of knee braces for treatment of
osteoarthritis of the knee. They may be especially helpful if the arthritis is centered on one side of the knee. A brace can assist with
stability and function. There are two types of braces that are often used. An "unloader" brace shifts load away from the affected portion of
the knee. A "support" brace helps support the entire knee load. In most
studies, the knee symptoms improved, with a decrease in pain on weightbearing and a general ability to walk longer distances.
4. Physiotherapy : Physiotherapy may include applications of heat or ice, water exercises, liniments or elastic bandages.
5. Drug Treatment: Several types of drugs can be used in treating arthritis of the knee.
Anti-inflammatory medications can include aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen to help reduce swelling in the joint. Simple pain relievers
such as Tylenol are available without a prescription and can be very effective in reducing pain. Pain relievers are usually the first choice
of therapy for osteoarthritis of the knee. The use of *oral steroids* and *anti-inflammatory medicines* help to
reduce the amount of inflammation and pain felt in the knee. All drugs have potential side effects and simple
analgesics are no exception. Hence discuss these issues with your orthopaedist or primary physician.
``If your arthritis does not respond to these nonsurgical treatments, you may need to have surgery. There are a number of surgical options, including the following:
1. Arthroscopic surgery uses fiber optic technology to enable the surgeon to see inside the joint and clean it of debris or repair torn cartilage.
2, An osteotomy cuts the shinbone (tibia) or the thighbone (femur) to improve the alignment of the knee joint.
3. A total or partial knee arthroplasty replaces the severely damaged knee joint cartilage with metal and plastic.
4 Cartilage grafting is possible for some knees with limited or contained cartilage loss from trauma or arthritis.
Alternative therapies include the use of acupuncture and magnetic pulse therapy.
Acupuncture uses fine needles to stimulate specific body areas to relieve pain or temporarily numb an area. Although it is used in many
parts of the world and evidence suggests that it can help ease the pain of arthritis, there are few scientific studies of its effectiveness.
Magnetic pulse therapy is painless and works by applying a pulsed signal
to the knee, which is placed in an electromagnetic field. Like many alternative therapies, magnetic pulse therapy has yet to be proven.
For thousands of years, in ancient India, China and in other countries,
green remedies have cured a lot of people from all kinds of diseases. Also green remedies usually do not cause any side effects.
In Ayurvedic system of medicine, the effective green remedies of Knee Arthritis is
Indian bdellium or guggul The
Ashwagandha powder using with milk is also an anti-inflammatory.
A regular gentle message of effected knee with Til oil boiled with Garlic relieves the inflation.
Boswelia and Bromelain herbs have been clinically proven be highly effective in reducing inflammation and pain.
There are natural ways to eliminates arthritic knee pain by reducing joint and cartilage inflammation. The combination
of enzymes and herbs fight the inflammation effectively. *Enzymes are created in your body. These enzymes fight the inflammation and repair
damage caused by overuse of your joints and aging. They also clean your blood, break down scar tissue and even fight viruses and bacteria.
Turmeric, ground from Curcuma longa, a knobby root has been used as an anti-inflammatory in India for thousands of years, says Shailinder Sodhi, who teaches
ayurvedic at Bastyr University, in Kenmore, Wash. It can be used for any type of pain, whenever an anti-inflammatory is
needed, he says. It can be combined with oil and applied topically to injured areas to reduce swelling and pain, he adds.
Ginger contains active components, including gingerols and zingibain, which have anti-inflammatory
properties. According to James A. Duke, author of "The Green Pharmacy,"
zingibain is an enzyme that breaks down proteins and suppresses inflammation by inhibiting prostaglandins --- substances that cause
inflammation. It also suppresses substances that trigger pain and cause tissues to swell.
Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent joint damage.
Keeping active and losing weight are the best ways to prevent and fight arthritis knee pain.
Take a walk every day, as much as you can bear. This will reduce the stiffness and strengthen the muscles around your knee – allowing
them to properly support the knee joint.
Yoga.: Yoga combines stretching, balance, muscle strengthening, and meditation — all of which can make you feel better emotionally and physically. A recent Indian study found that as part of a comprehensive treatment plan, yoga lessened not only pain and morning stiffness, but also anxiety and blood pressure in
elderly people with knee arthritis.
The following tips are particularly helpful
in early and medium stages and can help reduce pain and swelling.
1. Choose the correct type of shoes. not too high or too hard. Don't wear sandals.
2. Walk on flat terrain and avoid walking up or down steep inclines or hills as they put strain on the knee.
3. Use the handrail to support yourself as much as possible while climbing the stairs.
4. Do not Carry Heavy Objects as it will increases the stress on your knees.
5. Avoid standing for long periods of time as puts your knees under considerable strain.
6. Avoid folding your legs under your chair when seated and gently stretch your legs frequently.
7. Avoid sitting on low chairs and choose chairs with a higher seat to take the load off your knees.
8. Do not Kneel as kneeling concentrates pressure directly on your knees.
9. Have a good laugh - Laughing can relax muscles, reduce stress, relieve pain and boost your immune system.
10. A warm bath before bed can relieve muscle tension, ease aching joints and help you get a good night’s sleep.
11. Listening to your favorite music can lighten your mood and may even help you to forget your pain
New study on Knee Arthritis
* Many macro-scale studies have looked at how the various components of a knee joint " cartilage, menisci, ligaments and bone " respond to weight
and other external loads. However, Erdemir and colleague Scott C. Sibole wanted to better understand how those large mechanical forces correspond
to the related deformation of individual cartilage cells or chondrocytes
within the knee. Previous micro-scale studies of cartilage have not commonly been based on data from body-level scales,
in particular, by the musculoskeletal mechanics of the knee joint.
* Turmeric, a bright-yellow spice best known as an ingredient in curry, is
gaining scientific interest as a natural alternative to arthritis medications.
* Working with the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board researchers collected and analysed data relating to the compressive forces acting on
the knee joint from 20 people who were taught techniques to run forwards and backwards. In 85 per cent of the participants, researchers found that the
compressive forces behind the knee cap are increased in forward running compared to running backwards.
Knee Exercise video
The effective green remedies of Knee Arthritis is
Indian bdellium or guggul
Turmeric, ground from Curcuma longa,
a knobby root has been used as an anti-inflammatory in India for thousands of years
Ginger contains active components,
including gingerols and zingibain, which have anti-inflammatory properties.