1. What is causing the pain and how did I get it?
This is an injury to the cartilage of the knee joint. Cartilage is a smooth layer of tissue covering the surface of the joints. The cartilage can be worn out due to repetitive stress to the same area. This cartilage wear and tear can be divided into grade 1 to 4 (Grade 1 is mid and 4 is severe).
Grade 1 – 2, there is a mild crack/ fissure in the cartilage. Grade 3 – 4, the cartilage layer has worn down to form a cavity to the underlying bone. When you have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the knee, the cartilage in the knee is usually at the grade 3 to 4 stage.
2. How can physiotherapy help?
Physiotherapy is helpful for all stages.
Grade 1- 2, physiotherapy is aim at correcting the alignment of your lower limbs and treatment may include:
- Release of tight and overuse muscles with Shockwave Therapy or Trigger point release therapy
- Correction of walking, climbing running gait/posture
- Recruitment of specific foot posture +/- orthotics
- Activation and strengthening of specific lower limbs muscles
Grade 3 – 4, physiotherapy is aim at pain relief and pain management techniques, treatment may further include:
- Corrective bracing
- Kinesiology taping
- Footwear correction
3. How can I help?
Seeking help at the grade 1-2 stage is most ideal, do seek help early. Sometimes when the pain is too severe, surgery may be the only option. At BMJ Therapy – Physiotherapy Singapore, we have treated many patients with this knee problem, thus be assured that our specialists will help to solve your long-term knee injury.
4. How long will it take to recover? (ie. prognosis)
In grade 1-2, pain relief can take place in about 6 weeks, in grade 3 – 4, pain control can sometimes be immediate with bracing.