The most common type of arthritis in the knee is osteoarthritis. Aging plays a major factor, as it is more prevalent in people 50 years of age and older, but it can also be hereditary or result from injury or being overweight. Simply put, knee osteoarthritis is the gradual wearing away of the natural cushioning (cartilage) in the knee joint. When the bones of the joints rub together it causes pain, swelling, dysfunction and stiffness. More than 27 million people in the U.S. have osteoarthritis, with the knee being one of the most affected areas.
Early detection for patients with knee osteoarthritis and prompt corrective treatment is important. Doctors will diagnose knee osteoarthritis based on patient history and various clinical factors. Conventional medical treatment for this condition has traditionally included injections of corticosteroids, prescribing devices such as braces and of course, knee surgery.
While many medical professionals agree that optimal body weight and changes in lifestyle choices can remedy knee pain symptoms, one of the most safe and effective treatments for correcting the root cause of knee osteoarthritis is injection of platelet-rich plasma (PRP). PRP has been used in surgeries to promote cell regeneration since 1987 but the research on using PRP to treat knee osteoarthritis didn’t begin until the year 2000.
An excerpt from the National Library of Medicine confirms that “in recent years, products
of regenerative medicine, such as platelet-rich plasma, autologous conditioned serum/autologous protein solution, and mesenchymal stem cells, have approached the treatment of knee osteoarthritis in a much different way. The goal is to reverse the inflammation and to transition the joint to an anabolic, rather than catabolic, state. This may allow the joint to
remodel itself and to ultimately heal, resulting in decreased pain, increased mobility, and potentially avoiding stressful surgery.”
There are several alternative therapies that can work together to correct the root cause of knee pain, many with the vital support of reputable medical science. Working collaboratively
with patients to create choices and outcomes is the future of both recovery and prevention.