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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Knee Pain

    Related Topics
    With osteoarthritis and a right meniscal knee tear and a left knee joint effusion, what are my options on treatment as I'm suffering a lot of pain. I'd rather not be so dependant on pain killers but open to your suggestions.
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • Helen Potter

    Physiotherapist

    3

    Thanks

    As a Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist, with extensive experience and highly advanced qualifications, as well as excellent communication skills, I can help you to: Become informed ... View Profile

    As a Specialist Physiotherapist, my first step would be to work out why you are having pain. Despite the pathology you describe, the symptoms may actually be coming from maltracking (poor movement of your kneecap), knee joint stiffness (lack of glide related to the meniscus injury), or poor muscle control at your foot and hip. Effusion or swelling also inhibits the stabilising muscles from working.

    You will be surprised and delighted to find out just how much we can do by working together with a dynamic approach.

    Once I have identified the factors contributing to your pain and lack of function, we can address the biomechanical aspects. Your anxiety should also reduce as you discover what can be done, and how your knee may rehabilitate well without surgery if the meniscus tear is not blocking your movement.

    Knee pain is treatable. Search for an experienced Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist near to you.

    Helen Potter FACP

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  • Rob Nash

    Myotherapist

    1

    Agree

    1

    Thanks

    I am a myotherapist and exercise scientist working in Kew, Victoria, with special interests in chronic and persistent pain, tendinopathies, cervicogenic, neurogenic and lumbo-pelvic pain. ... View Profile

    Weight management via diet, lifestyle and exercise modification can result in a great deal of relief from OA, in fact studies have shows that a loss of just 5kg can provide significant improvements. This is thought to be due to both reduced mechanical load through joints (due to lower body weight) and reduced inflammatory cells circulating in the blood (fat cells release inflammatory cells to reducing fat reduces the inflammation). If you are a smoker, or drink alcohol that would also be a big one to try to cut out to help reduce symptoms.

    Aside from that, as mentioned previously, physiotherapy, myotherapy or other manual therapy can help, provided the practitioner you see has a modern understanding of OA and pain science. Your therapist should help you with addressing biomechanical factors but also realise that other psychosocial factors may be contriburing to your condition, such as your beliefs, or what you have been told in the past about the state of your body. 

    Exercise should focus on strength training, to ensure your muscles can better support your joints.

    Good luck.

  • Helen Potter

    Physiotherapist

    2

    Thanks

    As a Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist, with extensive experience and highly advanced qualifications, as well as excellent communication skills, I can help you to: Become informed ... View Profile

    Yes, Weight loss is certainly proven to help knee pain when osteoarthritis is present. The outcome does depend on how severe the meniscal tear is and if it is blocking or just irritating the joint cuasing some of the swelling. Regards Helen Potter FACP

  • Dr Frank Thomas

    Pain Medicine Specialist

    1

    Agree

    1

    Thanks

    Dr Thomas is a Specialist Pain Medicine Physician utilising state-of-the-art therapies to control pain. Dr Thomas studied medicine at the University of Otago in New ... View Profile
    • Kangaroo Point, QLD (07) 3062 4526
    • The Range, QLD (07) 3062 4526
    • Capalaba, QLD (07) 3062 4526
    • South Brisbane, QLD (07) 3062 4526
    • Chermside, QLD (07) 3062 4526

    I agree with the advice from the physical therapists. We always recommend physical therapy as the cornerstone of treatment. Psychobehavioural techniques can add further benefit (and your physical therapist can help with these).  In cases where maximal improvement has been achieved but disabling pain remains, there are additional options available.

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