Osteoarthritis is a progressive disorder of joints due to gradual wear and tear of the cartilage. Cartilage is a natural cushioning covering the ends of the bones. It is tough but flexible and protects the bone at the joint. As a result of this wear and tear, bony spurs and cysts can develop at the knee joint causing normal functions of the knee to be affected.
- Osteoarthritis is degenerative in nature and occurs along with degeneration of other body tissues, which is all part of the ageing process.
- An estimated 90% of people over the age of sixty years develop varying degrees of osteoarthritis.
- While the exact causes of Knee OA vary, risk factors for developing this condition include the following:
- Inherited abnormalities in the shape of bones that surround the knee joint.
- Increase in age
- Excess body mass
- Previous joint or sports injury to the knee
- Occupations that involve excess load of the knees
- Metabolic disorder (e.g. Gout, Rheumatoid arthritis)
Common signs and symptoms
- Recurring pain in knee
- Knee stiffness especially in the morning or after a period of rest.
- Knee swelling and warmth
- Decreased mobility and functional ability of the knee making it difficult to perform daily activities like stairs climbing, getting in and out of car and getting up from a chair.
- Grinding noises in knee
- Deformities in the form of bow legs and knocked knees
- X-ray showing reduced joint space and degeneration
How physiotherapy can help
- Research has shown the benefits of physiotherapy in managing mild to moderate knee OA. Manual therapy can improve the mobility in the knee joint.
- Depending on the severity of the condition, a physiotherapist can improve the flexibility of the muscles around the knee. This will in turn reduce the load on the joint and allow better functional performance in daily activities.
- After a thorough gait analysis, a personalized strengthening programme for the hips and lower limbs muscles can be prescribed to improve walking efficiency.
- If there are lower limb alignment issues causing abnormal loading of the knee joint, our in-house podiatrist can customise insoles to reduce the symptoms.
Let our physiotherapists help you with your condition. Book an Appointment