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Knee Pain

Click here to download the Osteo Arthritis Of The Knee Patient Resource.

So you’ve been diagnosed with knee osteoarthritis…..What now?

What exactly is osteoarthritis of the knee?

Osteoarthritis is degeneration of the knee joint surfaces with associated inflammation.

Normal knee joint surfaces are smooth and congruent with a cushioning and shock absorbing cartilage. In an osteoarthritic knee the cartilage wears down reducing the shock absorption of the knee joint and the joint often looses its smooth shape due to wearing of the bone ends, and in the later stages osteophytes (boney processes) may form which further reduce knee congruency.

The inflammation and swelling can explain why you may feel the aching pain in your knee. The wearing of the cartilage and bone can explain why you might feel crepitus (grinding) in the knee and may have lost range of joint movement and also contribute to pain due to the pain sensitive lining to the bone.

Why did I get it?

  • You may have had an injury to the knee earlier on in life which predisposes your knee to overloading forces.
  • You may have been involved in a high impact sport that placed a lot of force through the knee joint.
  • You may be carrying excess weight which may be increasing the load through the knee joint.
  • You may have suboptimal lower limb biomechanics which cause you to load certain
  • structures in the knee joint.
  • Or you may have a combination of the above

What do I do now?

  • Make an appointment to discuss a management plan with your local physiotherapist
  • Keep as active as you can by modifying what you do. For example stay involved in physical activity however engage in activities that are lower impact such as swimming or cycling.
  • Look into optimising your weight if you fall outside a healthy weight range (staying active will help you do this).
  • A physiotherapist can help prescribe a strength programme for you to minimise muscle wasting and stiffening of the knee.

What can a physiotherapist offer me in terms of treatment?

  • Exercises to improve strength, range of movement and balance
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Education
  • The use of crutches or other walking aids
  • Activity and lifestyle modification advice
  • Biomechanical correction
  • Soft tissue massage
  • Weight loss advice where appropriate
  • Electrotherapy (e.g. ultrasound)
  • Taping
  • The use of a knee brace or compression bandage
  • Joint mobilisation
  • Ice or heat treatment

Example of exercises that may help you with maintaining you range of movement and knee strength.

  1. Heel slides: with gentle pressure in your heel, slide your knee towards your buttock as far as you can.
  2. Quads over a roll: with a rolled towed under your knee, keeping gentle pressure on the back of your knee into the towel, lift your heel up until your leg is as straight as you can get it hold this for 5 secs then control back down
  3. Static quads: Straighten your knee as much as you can, imagine your trying to touch the back of your knee to the floor hold this for 5-10secs then relax repeat
  4. Straight leg raise: draw your navel to spine to support your lower back then straighten your leg as you did in exercise 3 and lift you leg up off the floor (about 40 degrees) hold for 5 secs then lower down with control.

Perform each exercise 10 times and work towards performing 3 sets of each over time.

COVID 19 & Telehealth Notice

At Proactive Physiotherapy we recognise that people still injure themselves, and are in pain, so we are still open for face-to-face consultations for the time being, In the interests of everybody's health we are trying to minimise these face to face treatments, so if your condition can be helped without face to face treatment we will offer you telehealth or phone consults.

For your safety, we have reduced physiotherapists hours to allow us to have only two physiotherapists and one receptionist in the clinic at any one time. We use screening questionnaires for everyone attending the clinic and have strict sanitising procedures in place.

For anyone that doesn't want to come into the clinic, our telehealth service, “Physio By Video” is up and running. Anybody who is interested in this service should contact us by email: physio@proactivephysio.com.au, or by phone on 40536222 and a physiotherapist can discuss how this works.

Reception will be attended between 830am and 5pm and Monday to Thursday and 830am to midday on Friday, or you can leave us a voice message at other times.

Thank you for your understanding. We wish you all safety and good health in the coming days and weeks.

Julie Faulks and the entire Proactive Physio team.