The knee is one of the most often injured joints in the body. On first look it appears to be a simple hinge allowing the leg to bend, but it is a complex set of ligaments and muscle attachment points enabling dynamic movement coupled with control. The knee, along with the hip and ankle, is designed to allow the body to perform complex movements while weight-bearing.
When the knee is straight it has its stability from the shape of the joint, however when it is bent it relies upon the muscles of the thigh and leg to provide support and stability making good leg strength vital to effective movement.
The knee can produce pain due to many varied reasons, in sport it can be vulnerable to trauma, or overuse. In older people it is often the joint that develops osteoarthritis.
The most common types of knee pain that we see in our clinic include;
Patella Tendon Pain
20% of people who regularly do high impact sports such as running or team sports such as football or netball etc. will suffer from pain around the patella, with females twice as likely as males to experience the problem. The position of the patella and the position of the knee joint in relation to the hip and the ankle are both key in working out why a person would be suffering from this problem.
Ligament and Cartilage Injuries
In people under the age of 50 the cause of a cartilage injury is usually following a fall or a collision in sport or other activity, whilst for those that are over 50 it is usually as a result of degeneration of the cartilage. Women are three times more likely than men to have a problem with their meniscus and a third of people will also have a problem with the cruciate ligament in the knee.
Osteoarthritis is a condition where there is damage to the cartilage which covers the ends of the bones. Normally the smooth, slippery cartilage helps the joint to move smoothly. In this type of arthritis, the cartilage becomes thinner and rougher. The bone underneath then tries to repair this damage but sometimes overgrows, altering the shape of the joint.
Osteoarthritis of the knee can result from many factors, the main one being age. 30% of patients 70 years or older when x-rayed have osteoarthritis in the knee. Previous damage to the joint (for example a fracture, ligament or meniscus injury), or previous inflammation in the joint may lead to arthritis later on. Other factors such as a person’s weight or previous overuse can also play a part.
Our osteopaths see patients with knee pain on a daily basis. Getting an accurate diagnosis of your knee pain is vital to decide upon the most suitable treatment option. To do this they will take a detailed case history and perform a thorough examination. Once we know the cause of the problem, we can recommend the best course of action.
Often, if the problem with the knee is one of function (overuse, lack of strength or movement) then we can perform manual therapy techniques that have been shown to help with knee pain. We can also prescribe exercises and give lifestyle advice, both of which are crucial in helping with knee pain.
If the problem is from trauma or joint damage is suspected, then we can refer you for imaging (x-ray or MRI) in order to get an accurate diagnosis.
Do you want to know what is causing your pain and if we can help? Why not take advantage of our new patient assessment introductory offer to get you started towards a tailor made recovery plan for only £19.
Are you in a lot of pain and want to get better as soon as possible? If so then why not book in for a new patient consultation, with treatment on the day, for £65.
We are also there to help you from home. Take a look at our suite of exercise resources and advice sheets which you can easily download and use from home.
Sources for this text
At Align our focus in on providing expert, up to date care to patients in Bath and the surrounding areas to help them relieve their pain and achieve the most active life possible. Here are just a few of the ways we do this;
- We support your recovery, tailoring your treatment to your goals and a pace that works for you
- We combine exercise and hands on treatment giving you control over your recovery
- Our team of friendly, experienced osteopaths are available when you need us
- Our treatment is clinically based, practical and delivers tangible results
- We offer a low cost new patient assessment for just £19 so you can see for yourself who we are and how we work, with no obligation or risk
- We are continually researching new methods of treatment and where appropriate adapting our practices
- We can provide treatment quickly and offer an easy online booking system so you can arrange the help you need when it suits you
Still unsure? Don’t take our word for it, read some of the feedback from patients about how we have made a difference to their lives below.