Healthy people perceive the ability to move without pain as something quite simple and natural. But those who have encountered knee arthrosis know how difficult it is to restrict mobility.
Today, one in five people on Earth suffers from this disease, which often leads to disability. Moreover, knee arthrosis is much more common in women than in men.
What is knee arthrosis?
Arthrosis (or gonarthrosis) of the knee joint is a disease that develops as a result of excessive or regular stress on the knee joint. The disease is associated with pain, impaired motor function, and deformity of bone and cartilage tissue.
Why does arthrosis of the knee occur? There are several reasons for this disease:
- trauma (the most common cause of gonarthrosis at a young age);
- varicose veins;
- flat feet;
- menopause in women;
- violation of mineral metabolism;
- increased stress on the joints;
- hereditary predisposition.
All of these factors damage cartilage and interfere with intraarticular fluid production. As a result, friction leads to disruption of the structure of the bone and cartilage tissue in the joint. Inflammation occurs at the site of the injury, causing pain and limiting its mobility.
Signs of knee arthrosis
The development of knee disease is indicated by the appearance of some symptoms:
- pain aggravated by stress on the joint;
- feeling of joint “pain”;
- crackling (increases in the absence of timely treatment);
- edema, swelling.
Degree of disease
Three degrees of gonarthrosis can be distinguished.
- external deformation of the joint is not visible;
- mild swelling;
- legs are very tired;
- pain occurs in the joint when walking, climbing stairs, and after long periods of inactivity (such as sleep);
- Baker cyst formation.
- occurrence of pain even under light exertion;
- crackling in the joint when walking, squatting;
The mobility of the
- knee is reduced (the leg cannot be bent).
- severe pain even at rest;
- sleep disorder;
- sensitivity to weather changes is displayed;
- unstable gait is observed;
- decreased knee mobility.
Only a doctor can determine the extent of gonarthrosis.
Examination of a patient with gonarthrosis
Research makes it possible to determine the causes of pathology and to select the optimal therapy.
The following types of research are often used to clarify a diagnosis:
- Clinical and biochemical blood tests. These types of research allow similar symptoms to be distinguished, but differ in the treatment of arthritis and arthrosis.
- Radiography. X-rays of the joints are the most common method of diagnosing gonarthrosis, allowing the stage of the disease to be identified. But the main disadvantage of this type of diagnosis is that nothing but the bones can be seen in the picture.
- Joint Ultrasound. Ultrasound is able to detect fluid and soft tissue abnormalities and visualize cartilage. However, this method is subjective and requires re-examination of the conclusion by examination or X-ray examination.
- Magnetic resonance imaging. MRI is an unparalleled diagnostic method based on the use of magnetic waves. In recent years, this type of examination for joint disease has become the most common. The images reflect the smallest details of the joint: vascular system, soft tissue thinning, tendon swelling and bleeding. The earliest changes in cartilage tissue can be detected due to the accuracy of the tomogram.
- Computed tomography. X-rays are used for this type of examination as for X-ray examinations. But the image can be called more voluminous and more detailed, thanks to a number of images.
Treatment of gonarthrosis
Treatment for gonarthrosis should be done in the first or second stage of the disease, which saves the joint. However, treating knee arthrosis is not an easy issue given that it is a rapidly progressive disease.
Therapy should be aimed at complete elimination of pain, activation of blood circulation, and restoration of the affected area.
Medication for knee arthrosis
- NSAIDs- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, the list of which is quite extensive today. Their main job is to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs do not contain hormones and accordingly have few side effects on the body. However, these drugs also have contraindications that need to be known before taking.
- Chondroprotectors- drugs that nourish and restore cartilage structure. The main difference between chondroprotectors and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is the increase in synovial fluid production as a result of taking. For best results, chondroprotectors can be used regularly and for fairly long courses. However, they are not very effective in the last stages of arthrosis.
- Ointments and creams. The use of ointments is recommended by all leading experts in the field of joint diseases because they are effective in fighting most symptoms: relieving pain, reducing inflammation and having an antimicrobial effect. Each drug can be divided into 2 groups:
- anti-inflammatory and analgesic agents;
- vasodilator and warmer.
- CompressAn even more effective drug in the fight against arthrosis. The most common of these are: medical bile and others.
- Intra-articular injectionsare an expensive but highly effective treatment for gonarthrosis.
- The most common treatment option is glucocorticoid therapy. These medications reduce inflammation and relieve pain. But in some cases, side effects can worsen the patient’s condition. People at risk are those with the following diseases: ulcers, obesity, kidney failure, high blood pressure.
- Hyaluronic acid-based formulations are safer and act as intraarticular fluids when injected: they nourish cartilage and lubricate joint surfaces.
- Manual and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy and manual therapy can give excellent results in the early stages of the disease (recommended in combination with other treatment methods). In addition to exercise, heat therapy, electrophoresis and laser therapy, cryotherapy (cold treatment) and homeosiniatria (introduction of homeopathic agents into the biologically active points of the body) have recently been used.
- Surgery. In the last stage of gonarthrosis, only surgical treatment is indicated, in which the deformed joint is replaced with new ones made of high-strength materials.
Knee osteoarthritis: treatment with traditional medicine
Sometimes treatment with folk remedies to cure gonarthrosis is not a substitute for traditional treatments. These include: compresses, homemade ointments, decoctions and baths.
Joint treatment at home is indicated at intervals between medications. Take breaks to avoid side effects. During this time, the treatment of the knee joint can be continued with folk remedies.
- Use baking soda to remove swelling. A few tablespoons of baking soda should be dissolved in 1 tablespoon of warm water. Apply the resulting mixture to the tissue and fix it on the knee (you can wrap it around the knee joint) and fix it on top with a bandage. Leave the compress on overnight. Repeat the procedure every day for a week until the swelling completely disappears.
- An equally popular compress is a combination of water and vinegar. The pharmaceutical dressing is also left overnight.
- Treatment with folk remedies is not limited to compresses made with vinegar or soda. Very often honey, horseradish, cabbage, kefir, potatoes rolled through a meat grinder and even oatmeal are applied to the affected area.
- Dandelions are also used as an effective cure for joint diseases. Most often, infusion of flowers is used to rub problem areas to relieve pain. The most famous recipe: pour plucked dandelion flowers and pour triple cologne. Allow to cook for 10 days and wipe the joints a few times a day.
- Popular recipe for golden mustache ointment. To prepare, mix the juice of the freshly squeezed plant with baby cream, fat and Vaseline.
- Onion decoction is another popular way to relieve the symptoms of pain. Cut two onions together with the peel and bring to a boil until the onion is soft. Then use the resulting broth before meals.
- Baths with St. John's wort, calendula and eucalyptus essential oils have an anti-inflammatory effect on damaged cartilage surfaces.
- Mumiyo can relieve pain with folk remedies. We recommend rubbing the mixture of honey and mumiyo (100: 3 ratio) every night before going to bed. After 5-6 days, the arthrosis of the knee joint recedes.
And the list of recipes for treatments with folk remedies is not limited to this. There are a number of less popular but no less effective methods. So, for example, you can treat arthrosis with leeches, earthworms: these methods give good results, although not very common.
Often, folk remedies are only effective in conjunction with medication.
Among other things, the load on the knee joint must be limited - this will speed up its healing.
- Don't carry heavy things.
- Avoid stressful situations.
- Wear only comfortable shoes.
- Moves more, but watch your movements smoothly.
- Follow your diet. Eat meat, fish, seafood, beans no more than once every two days.
The human knee joint is one of the most affected as it supports the weight of the human body and provides movement.
Arthrosis of the knee joint is a deformation and destruction of the cartilage layer. As a result, the joint loses its ability to soften the constant blows of the joint and body during movement.
Remember that only timely diagnosis and treatment will help you avoid the unpleasant consequences of arthrosis. Take care of your health: consult a qualified professional at the first signs of the disease.