Mr David Houlihan-Burne, Consultant Knee, Hip and Sports Injury Surgeon at OSD Healthcare answers the most frequently asked questions patients have regarding knee pain and treatment.
Q Will knee pain go away naturally?
A It depends on the cause of the pain. For example, a sprain or strain will usually heal after a few days or weeks. However, if you have had knee pain that does not go away, gets worse at night or when you bend or straighten, or is sudden and severe in onset, it could be a sign of damage or injury. The best course of action is to arrange to see an Orthopaedic Consultant or Physiotherapist who specialises in joints and bones.
Q What causes knee pain?
A There can be many different reasons. In younger people, particularly those who play a lot of sport, it could be caused by damage to a ligament or the meniscal cartilage in the knee. From middle age onwards, osteoarthritis becomes the most common cause of knee pain and is a result of wear and tear to the end of the bones and cartilage in the knee joint.
Q What can be done to relieve knee pain?
A In the first case, your Consultant may suggest pain medication combined with a referral to physiotherapy for exercises to strengthen the muscles around the knee. If these do not work, you may need a scan of the knee. Corticosteroid injections into the joint can also be effective at relieving pain and increasing movement. If these do not work, depending on the diagnosis and scan results, your Consultant may suggest an operation such as a knee arthroscopy, a keyhole procedure to look inside the knee and repair and remove any damaged areas of cartilage, bone or ligament.
Q Will I need a knee replacement?
A A knee replacement is only offered when other treatments have been tried, but the pain or restricted mobility is impacting on your everyday life. Most often a knee replacement is not needed until you’re 60 or over, but they can last for 15 years or more and allow you to resume many of the activities you enjoyed before your knee problem.
To book an appointment please call 01442 331 900.