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Knee surgery usually isn't the first option when it comes to knee pain. Often times, a doctor will recommend non-invasive treatment options, such as taking specific multivitamins and supplements. The doctor may also suggest lifestyle changes, weight loss, and a myriad of other options to reduce the need for surgery.
Some common non-surgical treatment options for knee pain include:
1. Lifestyle Changes
The first defense to knee pain is usually lifestyle changes. Depending on your situation, your doctor may ask you to lose weight, stop running, and incorporate low-impact exercises. If you work in a demanding field, your doctor may also suggest time off or taking a lower position that requires less movement.
2. Physical Therapy
Your doctor may also give you a prescription for physical therapy, which involves low-impact exercises. Physical therapy treatments usually last for 3 to 5 months, with weekly participation usually 2 to 3 times a week. During treatment, you will meet with a trained physical therapist who will monitor you while you do various exercises. Expect to spend a great deal of time practicing various stretching routines.
Physical therapy is usually prescribed to those with knee pain, as the low-impact exercises help to strengthen leg and knee muscles—while reducing pain. Your physical therapist may also offer alternative treatment during your sessions, such as apply ice or heat.
3. Anti-Inflammatory Medications
Depending on the cause of your knee pain, your doctor may also ask you to take anti-inflammatory medications on a regular basis. Anti-inflammatory medications help to reduce inflammation in the body, including the knee joints, which reduces pain and irritation.
4. Stem Cells
A more experimental treatment option is stem cells. Doctors use stem cells from your body, inject them into the hip, and knee socket to promote cartilage growth. Many patients have great success with stem cell treatment. However, since it is experimental you should speak with your doctor before you make a final decision.
Another experimental option is acupuncture. The ancient Chinese medical treatment uses thin, sharp needles that are inserted at various points in the body. It is believed that the treatment works by affecting the nerves and reducing pain. It can also reduce inflammation and other symptoms associated with knee pain.
Bracing is another alternative option to knee surgery. Instead of undergoing a specific treatment option, you will wear a specialized brace that will help support the leg and knee. It will also add pressure to the affected area, which can help joints and bones realign.
If you don't want to undergo an invasive knee surgery operation, talk to your doctor about your alternative options. Your doctor may have you use 1 or more of these options to help relieve your pain, so that you get back to your normal life. In cases where knee surgery is required, contact a company such as Noyes Knee Institute.