The Most Common Knee Pain Associated With Aging
By J. Parikh, M.D.
Knee pain is a common condition that people will experience in their lifetime. Although it is not known to decrease life span, it can affect lifestyle and overall health by limiting a person’s ability to do exercise, be active and enjoy their mobility.
The most common knee pain related to aging is caused by osteoarthritis, which is a condition that causes a progressive wearing down of the cartilage in the knee joint. It is more common in people over the age of 50.
The condition can also be seen in people who are younger for multiple reasons such as if they had trauma to their knee, caused a lot of wear and tear to the knee as with rigorous activities like soccer or repetitive kneeling.
It can also be due to genetics and it is more common with people who are obese.
Osteoarthritis is the inflammation of the joints caused by the increased forces of bone on cartilage within the knee. It is a condition of progressive degeneration which results in the eventual loss of cartilage in the knee joint and leaves only bone on bone. This results in the inability to properly bend and straighten the knee causing permanent disability.
In treating this condition, it is important to remember that it begins in stages that are manageable and treatable with success. In the beginning stages, it starts with just some pain, light swelling, and possible clicking with leg bending.
Treatments have the best chance of success when they are started right away. After time has passed and the condition has progressed into later stages, the result will be muscle loss, possible deformities, and loss of cartilage.
Conservative treatments are usually not as effective later and usually will require surgery. It is important to get help early when you think you may have the condition.
What does it feel like?
- Frequent pain in and around the knee joint
- Restricted motion with pain in the knee
- Stiffness and swelling of the joint
- Possible clicking and cracking noises with leg movement
- Eventual deformity and weakness
Key Treatment Tips
Without changes to lifestyle such as diet, exercise, physical rehabilitation, or weight reduction, osteoarthritis is known to progress and worsen more rapidly. It can eventually lead to surgery if left untreated. It can also exacerbate other obesity-related diseases due to it limiting the physical activity levels of people.
Knee pain is a condition that our clinic has been helping people with for over 10 years. If you are suffering from this condition, call us to get help and start living a pain-free life again!