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While many of us will experience aches and pains in our knees as we age, almost all knee issues are related to the degenerative process or osteoarthritis.
What is osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is the wearing away of the cartilage on the ends of the thigh and/or shin bone. While it is part of the aging process, osteoarthritis can be accelerated by weight, genetics, a history of injury, or activity.
The two most important things you can do to help manage pain associated with osteoarthritis is to maintain an ideal body weight, and engage in a low-impact exercise regiment, such as swimming, biking, walking or yoga.
While anti-inflammatories can be prescribed for pain, I do not recommend using them for chronic pain over a long time period because of side effects of chronic use of the medications. Instead, I recommend taking the max dosage for only for one to three days. If that doesn’t help, try other options.
If conservative treatment doesn’t alleviate symptoms, and activity level is negatively impacted by pain, then surgery can be an option.
*Learn more about knee replacement.
Dr. Mark Galland is a orthopedic surgeon with the Orthopaedic Specialists of North Carolina. He sees patients at WakeMed North Hospital. Find out more about the orthopaedic services offered at WakeMed, and request an appointment today.
3000 New Bern Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27610