Knee Pain

Knee Pain

Knee pain is a common musculoskeletal problem. Knee pain can lead to reduced quality of life and loss of physical function. Whether you’re young and experience knee pain from a sporting activity, or if you’re reaching your later years and knee pain may be the early signs of degenerative changes (knee arthritis) patients often reports frustrations that it is restricting their ability to live a normal life .

Due to the poor correlation between radiographs and physical disability we rely on clinic tests, symptoms and disability to guide our treatments and assess whether surgical interventions is needed. 

 

How A Thorough Assessment In Knee Pain Guides Treatment

It is important for people to explore all forms of knee pain relief. 

A thorough assessment is key to achieving the best results. Imagine if you took you’re car into the garage and they replaced the wrong part? 

The difference is bodies are far more complex that.

Our goal at The Physio Crew is to help you become a ‘mini physio’ in your injury. To understand the complexities of the brain, the tissue, how to harness loading and understand physiology to help structures heal and strengthen. 

Within The Physio Crew you are tapping into 26 years of combined experience and a team that dedicates time to CPD every single day (in most practices you will be lucky if they attend one course a year and perhaps an hour training a month). We know to be the best we have to keep learning and thats why it paramount to our culture. 

 

What Is Causing My Knee Pain?

Knee pain can be cause by traumatic injury such as injury to the muscle, ligament, fascia or tendon.

Knee pain can be caused by repetitive strain such as ITB syndrome, patella tendinopathy (formerly known as tendonitis), fat pad irritations, bursa irritations.

Or sometimes there are a huge list of other pathologies such as Knee arthritis, Osgood schlatters disease, meniscal tear, muscle imbalances, plica irritations, head of fibula irritation, quad/ hamstring insertion issues, patellofemoral pain syndrome.

The last cause of knee pain can be referral so of course we will be looking at your back and hip to see if your pain is referred. this is when you feel pain in a part of your body but its coming from a different source.

The first thing most people say when I’m assessing them is “I had no idea how many structures there were in there! There’s quite a lot to know isn’t there?” This is my favourite part of the job. Some clients don’t want to know and come in and say ‘fix me.’ But my favourite clients are the ones that share my values, want to understand their body, engage with the process and prevent it coming back again. 

 

How Do You Know If Your Knee Injury Is Serious?

The big question playing on peoples minds is ” Is my knee pain serious?”

There are a few key questions we ask

Firstly, it is important to remember all Chartered Physiotherapist are autonomous practitioners which means you do not need a referral from the GP to come and see us. We have the knowledge and skills to understand how to recognise serious or sinister pathology and refer you on if you display and signs called ‘red flags.

This is a screening  process that GP and all professionals should use.

Whilst its always best to seek assessment from a musculoskeletal specialist GP of physio here are some key questions to ask yourself

  1. Did you hear a Pop or snap sound?
  2. Have you got excessive movement?
  3. Does your knee feel unstable and give way on you ( this one must not be ignored we need to see you)?
  4. Is there deformity of the bone ( potential dislocation or fracture)?
  5. Immediate bruising or swelling?
  6. Are you able to weight bear?
  7. Is the knee is locked?

 

What is the Best Exercise for Knee Pain?

This question is like saying ‘what is the best exercise for weight loss.’

To an expert this question seems ridiculous as it depends on you size, you weight your gender, medical conditions, amount of adipose tissues, your training regime. There’s so many factors that determine the best way to lose weight for that individual. However we know if they do a basic diet and exercise they will have some results but probably not sustainable or as quickly as they would have if they spoke to an expert. 

The important thing with knee pain is that we normalise your muscle pattern. For example we want both sides to be of equal strength and for you to use activate good posterior kinetic chain ( the pattern and contraction of muscles as they work together during walking or running. 

Many exercises for knee pain will focus on the quadriceps and gluteal muscles as good hip strength is imperative to knee control.

We need to analyse you’re training to see whether a change of shoes, surface, training distance, training speed, change of job may have contributed. 

We need to adjust training loads, perhaps suggest cross training exercise to allow tissue time to remodel without losing your fitness. 

 

Treatment In Knee Pain

We use a variety of treatments for knee pain.

People love hands on treatment and we do a lot of massage, soft tissue mobilisation, myofascial release. METS, stretches and frictions. However in reality for long term gains your money is invested in our expert knowledge on how to harness natures natural healing process and facilitate this to minimise your time out of sport and the activities you love.

Whether you’re an athlete itching to get back out running or an elderly person who wants to play with their grand children we can help guide you with expert advice on training load, exercises and how to prevent future problems. 

Our goal within The Physio Crew is to educate the population so that every single time they come into contact with us they learn a bit about their body, how to look after it, protect it, use it. We imagine then that this ripples out across the community so you can help others by developing a culture of people who take care of themselves, avoid injuries and take early action.

Conditions that are left as niggly injuries left for over 6-8 months are much harder to treat and end up costing the patient more to resolve. We want to see people early so that we can nip it in the bud and it doesn’t develop into something that has the person out of sport for several months ( sometimes even years- yes I’m talking to you runners!!)

Summary

If you have enjoyed this article please share with people who may benefit on your twitter or facebook page. Please follow us on You tube for free educational information and of course if you’re looking for expert assessment and treatment please check out our online booking tool and give us the opportunity to show you The Physio Crew is different and we are dedicated to helping you discover life without pain. Our success and growth is dependent on our results and we work hard to achieve the best for you and you’re loved ones.

 

 

Nicole and The Physio Crew Team

 

References

Kim IJ, Kim HA, Seo YI, et al. Prevalence of knee pain and its influence on quality of life and physical function in the Korean elderly population: a community based cross-sectional study. J Korean Med Sci. 2011;26(9):1140-6.