Knee pain is a common problem for many people. This can be due to injury, aging, and overuse.
Knowing your options and understanding not only what is causing your knee pain, but exploring natural, non-invasive solutions may help you avoid more drastic measures.
What are the disadvantages of knee surgery?
There are risks associated with any surgery and knee surgery is no different. Any time you cut the skin you are running the risk of infection. There’s a lot that goes on with surgery and, while rare, complications can arise:
- Complications with the incision site – The incision can get infected, can be slow to heal, and stitches can come out. These and other issues can make knee surgery inconvenient or even harmful.
- Complications with the knee – Sometimes that area of the knee where the work was done can become inflamed or infected. It can occur in the joint itself or in the connective tissues.
- Anesthesia complications – Common reactions to anesthesia include vomiting, shivering, drowsiness, dizziness, and sore throat may occur but typically resolve themselves. More serious side effects may include allergic reactions and breathing problems. These usually require medical intervention.
- Limited mobility – Immediately after the surgery and up to several weeks after you will likely have limited mobility. At first, you may have restrictions that prevent you from bearing any weight on that leg. Later you may have a brace or other device, cane, or your knee could just be stiff and have a limited range of motion.
- Nerve damage – Nerve damage does occur in about 10% of surgeries involving the knee. You might experience numbness, weakness, burning sensation, foot drop, muscle spasms, tingling or prickling sensation. These effects may last a few weeks after your surgery or they may never go away completely.
- Pain and discomfort – Surgery is invasive and is essentially inflicting trauma on your body. This can cause pain, swelling, stiffness, and general discomfort. Pain may only last a few weeks but some people do experience chronic pain that never goes away.
- Need for help or assistance – Right after surgery, when you are unable to put weight on your leg you might have difficulty getting around. Having someone sit with you and help you with things like preparing food, going to the restroom, and other vital tasks is usually an absolute necessity. Some people get a friend or family member but others hire a nurse or caregiver.
- Blood clots – Post-surgery blood clots can occur, often due to the patient’s required inactivity in the days following the surgery. The danger is that a blood clot can break free and travel to the lungs which can be life-threatening.
- Anemia – A very common complication of knee surgery is anemia. This is often treated with a blood transfusion.
Before you take the surgical route for your knee pain, you should weigh all of your options and decide if the risks are worth the potential benefits. Often, choosing non-surgical options first can minimize the pain and increase mobility without the invasiveness of surgery.
What is the best treatment for knee pain?
The best treatment for knee pain is the one that works for you. There is not a one-size-fits-all remedy when it comes to pain. You have to take into account what is causing the pain as well as the individual who is experiencing the pain. Some people have a high tolerance for pain and others can’t handle it at all. Age, activity level, and weight are important considerations as well.
One thing is for certain though. Surgery should be a last resort. It should be what you try when you have exhausted all of your other options.
Is regenerative medicine a good treatment for knee pain?
Knee pain caused by arthritis or joint degeneration may be relieved by a treatment called regenerative medicine. It involves introducing biological cells or cell products into an area of the body that is injured or diseased to optimize healing. The body has incredible natural healing abilities and regenerative medicine supports that, so your body is actually encouraged to heal itself. Many of our patients report a significant reduction in pain after just a few treatments.
If you have knee pain don’t suffer needlessly. At Sandstone Health we have several non-surgical, medication-free treatments for knee pain. Schedule your initial consultation today to find one that is right for you.