Due to the stresses and strains we all put on our knees, Osteoarthritis of the knee is common. Osteoarthritis affects the cartilage underneath your kneecap (patella) and the main surfaces of your knee joint.
Pain at the front and sides of the knee are symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. Bent and bowed knees suggest severe osteoarthritis.
Your physical symptoms usually are the first signs of Knee Osteoarthritis. In diagnosing the condition, your Doctor may check for: -
- Reduced movement
- Muscle thinning
- Joint tenderness
- Creaking or grating sounds
- Bony swelling
- Excess fluid
- Joint instability
Additional tests may include: -
- Blood tests – To help rule out other types of arthritis
- X-rays – Useful to confirm osteoarthritis, but x-rays can’t show how much pain or disability osteoarthritis is likely to cause.
- MRI scans – Rarely used, but may help rule out other joint issues related to soft tissue conditions
From your late 50's onwards, women are twice as likely as men to suffer osteoarthritis of the knee. Factors that increase risk include:-
- Previous sporting injuries
- Previous operations removing torn cartilage
- Nodal osteoarthritis (particularly in women)
- Capsaicin cream for osteoarthritis
- Stronger painkillers for osteoarthritis
- Surgery for osteoarthritis
- Steroid injections for osteoarthritis
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)