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What do doctors say about Knee Pain? 

Knee pain management

Forty-four-year-old Mrs. Ashi recently visited a knee doctor as she was having terrible pain in her knees for the last six months. In the first few months, her pain was mild and bearable, but very soon her pain progressed and made it difficult for her to do her daily chores. After some days, her pain got so bad that she had to quit her job as her knees become stiff and swollen while walking. She didn’t receive much relief from the painkillers and decided to consult the best knee replacement surgeon in Bangalore. 

Mrs. Ashi was curious to find the reasons for her knee pain and relied on her knee specialist to get into the roots of it. Her knee doctor revealed a few important details about knee pain, its causes, and treatment. Here’s what her knee specialist in Bangalore told her:

Knee pain can develop in a localized area of the knee or spread throughout the knee. It generally develops in the bony area (knee joint, femur, tibia, and fibula), knee cap, and cartilage (meniscus) of the knee. Knee pain if not taken proper measures to manage it can become aggravated with minimal physical activity as well as small foot injury and weight. Knee pain can impact people of all age groups, and home remedies can be beneficial unless it becomes intolerable. 

Causes of knee pain

Temporary knee pain can occur due to an injury or accident and goes away with proper treatment. However, chronic knee pain rarely reduces completely without treatment. Other diseases can also cause knee pain. These are: 

  • Osteoarthritis: Accompanied by pain, inflammation, and joint damage caused by degeneration of joints.

  • Tendinitis: Pain occurs in the front of the knee, and may aggravate due to climbing and taking stairs.

  • Chondromalacia patella: degeneration of cartilage under the kneecap.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA): It is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disorder that causes erosion of bones and swelling in the joints

  • Baker’s cyst: It occurs when there’s a buildup of the synovial fluid behind the knee

  • Meniscus tear: It occurs when there’s  rapture in the cartilage of the knee

  • Bone tumors: Osteosarcoma (a type of bone cancer) that occurs in the knee

Diagnosis of knee pain

Before proceeding towards the treatment, a knee doctor conducts a physical examination to inspect swelling, pain, stiffness, and tenderness in the knee. He/she will also observe your ability to move your leg in different positions and directions. Later on, he/she will conduct some imaging tests such as: 

  • X-ray. It detects bone fractures and degenerative joint disease.

  • Computerized tomography (CT) scan. It helps in the diagnosis of bone problems and subtle fractures. 

  • Ultrasound: Makes use of sound waves to produce real-time images of the soft tissue structures within and around the knee. 

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): It reveals injuries of soft tissues such as ligaments, tendons, cartilage, and muscles.


Treatment for knee pain:

 Depending upon the severity and cause of the knee pain, treatments vary. 


You may get injections like corticosteroids, hyaluronic acid, and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) directly into your joint. These injections reduce inflammation and pain  

Home Remedies to manage  knee pain:

  • Exercise: Regular and low-impact exercises like walking and swimming can aid in keeping your joints flexible.

  • Eat healthy: Weight gain during pregnancy and deficiency of vitamin D and calcium can impact your knees and joints. Hence a balanced diet that is high in vitamin D and calcium is important for new moms with the risk of knee pain and arthritis. 

  • Massage: Most of knee specialists suggest massage therapy to reduce joint stiffness, joint pain, and knee pain. Regular massage can also help in improving the range of motion and walking.

  • Yoga: After pregnancy your body tremendous changes which cause lots of stress to most of the body parts- in the form of pain and sprain. If you have had a normal delivery then yoga is a good way to reduce the strain caused during pregnancy.

  • Acupuncture: Acupuncture is performed by inserting very thin needles into the body to reduce pain and trigger anti-inflammatory effects. One of the recent studies states that 18,000 patients found acupuncture to be effective for knee pain caused by osteoarthritis. Acupuncture also releases endogenous opioid endorphins (natural pain-relieving chemicals from the body) responsible for relieving body pain. 

  • Frankincense oil: Frankincense, also known as olibanum is derived from the resin of the Boswellia tree. The Frankincense oil contains antioxidants and creates analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects which are beneficial in reducing inflammatory symptoms and alleviating knee pain. Adding 5-6 drops of pure frankincense oil and a carrier oil such as coconut oil and mustard oil, and gently massaging the affected area, 2-3 times a day for 5-10 minutes can help in reducing inflammation and pain.

  • Ginger: Ginger is known to have natural anti-inflammatory properties that aid in lessening the pain in the knees and joints. The antioxidants in ginger help in fighting the degeneration of joints. You need to boil two cups of water and then chopped ginger and Tumeric into it. Let it cool down for at least ten minutes and then have the ginger laced water with honey. 

Knee Surgery

If you have failed to respond to other ways of knee pain treatment, knee surgery is an ideal option for you. Knee surgeries include:

  • Bilateral knee Replacement or Double knee replacement surgery: 

There are two types of Bilateral knee replacement surgery-a) Simultaneous bilateral knee replacement b) Staged bilateral knee replacement. 

  • Simultaneous bilateral knee replacement: When both of your knees get a replacement at the same time, the surgery is called a simultaneous bilateral knee replacement

  • Staged bilateral knee replacement: When each knee is replaced at a different time, it’s called a staged bilateral knee replacement

  • Unilateral replacement: 

Single knee replacement is called unilateral knee replacement.

  • Revision knee replacement- 

This procedure is performed if you have severe arthritis or if you’ve already had more than one knee replacement surgery.

  • Partial knee replacement surgery-

This surgery is performed when arthritis affects only the side of the knee. Partial knee replacement can be performed through a smaller incision than is needed for total knee replacement. 

  • Patellofemoral joint replacement surgery: 

Patellofemoral replacement is a type of partial knee replacement during which only a part of the knee is resurfaced. 

  • Arthroscopic Knee Surgery: 

It is performed by making a small incision and inserting a tiny camera, called an arthroscope into the knee. The knee replacement surgeon will view the inside of the joint on a screen/monitor. This surgical procedure is also called as knee keyhole surgery.

  • Knee ligament tear surgery: 

Knee ligament surgery is a treatment to repair a complete tear of a knee ligament that occurs due to instability in the knee. 

  • Kneecap surgery:

In this surgery, your knee surgeon will replace only the under-surface of the kneecap.

Risks and Complications of Knee Surgery

  • bleeding and blood clots

  • continued knee pain

  • disease transmission of the graft from a cadaver

  • infection

  • knee stiffness or weakness

  • loss of range of motion

  • Lack of healing of the graft is rejected by the immune system

Recovery time after knee surgery: You may be able to resume light activity in 1–3 weeks and other physical activities in 6–8 weeks.

Apart from explaining details about knee pain and its treatment, Mrs. Ashi’s knee doctors asked her some additional questions that can be asked to anyone who has knee pain. Your knee doctor may ask some of the following questions if you are experiencing severe knee pain. 

  • Do you exercise or play any sports?

  • Was the knee pain caused by an injury?

  • Have you experienced any swelling, instability, or locking of the knee?

  • Have you ever experienced knee pain before? If yes, are you aware of its cause?

Feel free to answer these questions and your knee doctor will guide you in managing your pain effectively. 

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