Orthopedic Associates' Blog

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Orthopedic Associates' Blog


Causes, Symptoms and Treatments for Arthritis Pain
Causes, Symptoms and Treatments for Arthritis Pain
By: Dr. Burke  Arthritis pain can present itself in many ways: as a dull ache, a burning feeling, a sharp pain or a pressure that feels like there’s a vice grip on your joints. Either way, it’s an ongoing challenge to manage pain from arthritis, which is the leading cause of pain and disability worldwide. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that 52.5 million adults have been diagnosed with some form of arthritis. There’s plenty of information out there about pain remedies, exercise and medication, so how do you know what’s right for you? Causes First, let’s take a look at what causes arthritis pain. The term itself can describe more than 200 rheumatic diseases and conditions that affect joints, including osteoporosis and diseases of the connective tissues. There isn’t a single type of arthritis, so the causes can include: Injury that leads to degenerative arthritis Abnormal metabolism that leads to gout and pseudo gout ...

Preparing Your Home for Post-Total Knee Replacement Surgery
Preparing Your Home for Post-Total Knee Replacement Surgery
By Dr. Kramer Recovering from total knee replacement surgery can be a painful, grueling experience. The good news is many patients experience a new lease on life after knee replacement that allows them to enjoy golf, running, dancing, and many other activities that were painful to experience before the surgery. The recovery period can be several weeks long and of course, every patient’s situation is unique. Thankfully, there are a few easy ways to make your post-total knee replacement recovery a bit easier to manage around the house. In the days after your surgery, you will likely be back home and trying to have life be as normal as possible. With some simple changes in your home, you can make your recovery period much safer and more enjoyable. Protect against falling Of course, we hope you don’t fall at any time, but patients with a new knee are at a higher risk of falling. It’s wise to protect against a fall by installing an extra hand rail or two around the house and wearing shoes or socks with good traction. You may also ...

Non-Surgical Treatment Options to Treat Knee Osteoarthritis Before Considering Total Knee Replacement
Non-Surgical Treatment Options to Treat Knee Osteoarthritis Before Considering Total Knee Replacement
By: Dr. Kramer Is knee replacement surgery the only option for alleviating arthritis pain in your knee? Thankfully, the answer is no. There are a variety of non-surgical treatment options to treat knee osteoarthritis before choosing total knee replacement. The key is understanding the nature and extent of your discomfort and pain, namely what is the primary contributor to your potential need for knee replacement. Possible Causes that Lead to Total Knee Replacement Knee osteoarthritis, or simply arthritis as it’s often referred to, is one of the leading causes of knee replacement. The cartilage lining between the bones is thinner than what’s recommended or missing entirely in certain cases. This causes additional pressure or friction on the leg bones. X-rays are often taken to confirm if the joint space is narrowed or irregular in shape. Total knee replacement may also be considered due to trauma to the knee region or increased stress, such as overuse. Inactive lifestyles can lead to obesity, which places unnecessary strain on the knee joint. This can cause significant pain over time. If the excess weight is not ...

How Long Is the Recovery Period from Total Knee Replacement?
How Long Is the Recovery Period from Total Knee Replacement?
By: Dr. Richard Hulsey   If you’re facing knee replacement surgery, you probably have this question on your mind: how long until I’m back to normal after knee replacement surgery? The impact of knee replacement surgery is different for every patient. Your current health condition, medical history, family background, diet, age, and even stress level can play a significant role in your recovery. There are a few common stages of recovery that most patients experience following knee replacement surgery: Initial Recovery: Your orthopedic surgeon will probably want you to be taking a few steps with your new knee within hours of surgery. This encourages blood flow to help prevent blood clots and mobilize any extra fluid received during surgery. You will probably be in the hospital for one or two days following knee replacement surgery. Pain is highly variable but is frequently controlled with a combination of medicines. Weeks 1-2: As you transition home, you may be feeling like your knee feels strong and ...

Do you need a total joint replacement for your arthritis?
Do you need a total joint replacement for your arthritis?
By: Dr. Richard Hulsey The aches and discomfort of arthritis can disrupt anyone’s everyday routine. A simple walk through the store is no longer relaxing as ol’ “Arthur” lets you know he’s still around. Pain medication doesn’t seem to do the trick. Physical therapy helped, but your arthritis pain still flares up at times. Would a total joint replacement relieve your arthritis pain? This is a frequent question many of our patients ask who are suffering from arthritis. Arthritis is more common than ever with people living longer. The American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons estimates 500,000 hip replacements and 3,000,000 knee replacements will need to be performed each year by the year 2030. (American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons) But the question remains: do you need total joint replacement to be free of your arthritis pain? We believe in exploring all viable treatment options, starting with non-invasive treatments, to help alleviate your arthritis pain. For many patients, undergoing a total joint replacement may provide the relief and new lease on life they need. However, there are several criteria we ...

Could the pain in your knee be a tear?
 Could the pain in your knee be a tear?
By: Dr. Ryan Pitts It happened. You’re jogging along the Katy Trail or walking up the steps at work and ouch- you feel a twinge of pain on the outside edge of your kneecap. The small divot on the outside is now tender to the touch. Oh no, did you tear something in your knee? Our brains can easily go to the worst possible scenario when we experience pain. How do you know if your knee pain is a small ‘tweak’ or if you may have torn a ligament? Thankfully, the answers are often obvious. There are a handful of crucial components in your knee region. There are four main ligaments - one on either side of your leg (collateral ligaments) and two crisscrossed inside your knee: The lateral collateral ligament (LCL) is on the outside of your leg. The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is on the inside of your leg. The ...

Could the pain in your knee be a tear?
 Could the pain in your knee be a tear?
By: Dr. Ryan Pitts It happened. You’re jogging along the Katy Trail or walking up the steps at work and ouch- you feel a twinge of pain on the outside edge of your kneecap. The small divot on the outside is now tender to the touch. Oh no, did you tear something in your knee? Our brains can easily go to the worst possible scenario when we experience pain. How do you know if your knee pain is a small ‘tweak’ or if you may have torn a ligament? Thankfully, the answers are often obvious. There are a handful of crucial components in your knee region. There are four main ligaments - one on either side of your leg (collateral ligaments) and two crisscrossed inside your knee: The lateral collateral ligament (LCL) is on the outside of your leg. The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is on the inside of your leg. The ...

When is a total knee replacement necessary for my arthritis pain?
When is a total knee replacement necessary for my arthritis pain?
By: Dr. Richard Hulsey Arthritis pain can be debilitating. You know what it’s like to feel the sharp wince halfway up the stairs. Walking, let alone jogging or dancing, is a challenge with how much pain you feel. Maybe you’ve tried a regimen of pain medications and nothing’s worked. Is total knee replacement your final option to relieve your arthritis pain? Total knee replacements are more common than ever with an estimated 3,000,000 knee replacements to be performed every year by 2030. (AAHKS) Thankfully, there are many non-surgical treatment options to consider before undergoing total knee replacement. Is total knee replacement the best option for your particular condition? That may be the case, but the obvious choice is to consider non-invasive procedures and treatments first. Non-surgical alternatives for osteoarthritis knee pain NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), such as ibuprofen and aspirin, can help manage osteoarthritis pain in your knee. Losing weight is an excellent way to help reduce arthritis pain by relieving unnecessary pressure. Using a cane to assist you with walking can be a good, short-term solution as well as physical therapy. (Arthritis ...

What is Jumper’s Knee?
What is Jumper’s Knee?
By: Dr. Nogalski You hop down from the last few rungs of a ladder and immediately wince in pain. Your left knee gives a sharp twinge. It hasn’t been the same since your pickup basketball game at the gym last week. You may be suffering from jumper’s knee, or patellar tendonitis according to its official name. The patellar tendon connects your kneecap to your shinbone and is designed to work with the range of the knee joint. The patellar tendon helps your knee flex, bend, and absorb impact, like jumping. Overuse of the patellar tendon can occur during activities that require repetitive jumping, like gymnastics, football, basketball, and even everyday activities. Symptoms of jumper’s knee The most telltale sign of jumper’s knee (patellar tendonitis) is a sharp pain between your kneecap and the top of your shinbone. Difficulty bending your knee or doing a small jump can also be a sign of patellar tendonitis. If you are experiencing any noticeable swelling or redness, you should immediately contact your primary care physician. Self-care treatment of jumper’s knee Thankfully, overuse injuries can often heal themselves with ...

How to recover from ACL surgery
How to recover from ACL surgery
By: Dr. Nogalski Approximately 200,000 ACL-related injuries occur in the U.S. every year. Of those 200,000 injuries, an estimated 95,000 injuries are full ruptures of the anterior cruciate ligament. Professional athletes and rec-league wonders are familiar with the shin-grasping scene of an ACL injury. If you’re lucky, you may experience only a Grade 1 sprain. Unfortunately, many ACL injuries are at least a Grade 2 sprain, which is a partial tear of the anterior cruciate ligament. Most Grade 2 ACL sprains and all Grade 3 ACL sprains do require surgery. The recovery period following ACL surgery can be grueling, but the rehabilitation process is worth it. You will probably be given a set of exercises to complete in the recovery room immediately following the surgery. This will encourage good blood flow through your knee to help prevent blood clots. Your primary concerns in the first two weeks following surgery are to reduce swelling in your knee and to keep the incision area clean. Prop your knee up on a pillow four to six times a day to relieve pressure. Your orthopedic specialist ...