Arthritis is a general term for a large number of conditions that involve inflammation and pain around the joints. There are several types of arthritis, like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and juvenile idiopathic arthritis. It’s a condition that affects nearly 24% of all adults in the United States. Arthritis most commonly affects the joints in the hands, feet, back, neck, and even the hips and knees. Research estimates that approximately 14 million people in the U.S. experience some form of osteoarthritis in their knee joints. Are you one of the many who have knee pain in their joints but you’re not sure if arthritis is behind it? You can learn more about whether your knee pain might be related to arthritis and how to tell by reading here.
How do I know if my knee pain is related to arthritis?
If you think you could be dealing with arthritis in your knee, you’ll need to see a medical professional who can diagnose your condition. Most physical therapists can provide a diagnosis if they think your symptoms match the description of a particular condition. Physical therapists can use diagnostic tools and techniques to determine if your joint pain and inflammation are caused by arthritis. Here are some of their diagnostic methods:
- Listen to symptom descriptions — One way that a physical therapist can determine if you have arthritis in your knee is by asking you to describe the symptoms you’ve been experiencing in your knees. Does one or both of your knees feel stiff or uncomfortable? What else have you noticed about these changes in your knees?
- Manually manipulate the knee joint — Another way that physical therapists can diagnose your knee condition is by manually manipulating your knee joint. They’ll move your knee back and forth and ask you to perform a few movements with your knee. The range of motion, flexibility and comfort you experience during these movements can be a strong indicator of your condition.
- Examine the knee joint area — Physical therapists will also examine the area around your knee joint and look for any irregularities on your skin. They’ll check for redness, swelling, skin discoloration and excessive skin warmth.
- Recommend X-ray imaging — In instances where these diagnostic tests don’t provide enough clarity to make a confident diagnosis, your physical therapist may recommend that you get X-ray imaging. They can refer you to a doctor or imaging specialist who can take pictures of the tissue inside and around the area of your knee.
What does arthritis of the knee feel like?
The most common symptoms of arthritis are pain and swelling, but arthritis in the knee can encompass a few other symptoms. These include:
- Redness around the knee.
- Warmth on the skin around the knee.
- Soreness or tenderness around the knee.
- Difficulty extending the knee fully.
- Locking or popping when moving the knee.
- Buckling of the knee when your weight is on it.
- Pain or discomfort that gets worse in certain weather conditions.
- Pain or discomfort that gets worse with long periods of inactivity.
Lattimore PT can be the one to provide you with effective treatment for your arthritis-related knee pain
Lattimore Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation Network started in 1992. John and Cindy Shuman, husband and wife, first launched their own physical therapy practice intending to improve the quality of life of each community member. Since 1992, Lattimore PT has opened dozens of different locations across New York.
Our team of talented physical therapists across the state is dedicated to understanding the best treatment for you. We specialize in taking a “hands-on,” interactive approach with each of our patients to provide them with the best care possible. We aim to make each physical therapy session enjoyable yet productive. The ultimate mark of success is a patient who feels positively impacted by our work. Are you ready to experience “the Lattimore way”?
We’re licensed physical therapists who can provide professional treatment for arthritis pain in the knees. We can help address your health concerns in a compassionate and welcoming environment. Our Lattimore PT team will do our best to make sure that you can get started on the road toward improved symptoms. We treat a wide variety of conditions and patients with individual circumstances. You’re not just another chart. Each patient deserves help. Let us be the ones to provide that help to you.
Contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.