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Knee Doctor Pottstown, PA

A Knee Doctor for Athletes

Knee Doctor Pottstown, PA

Many residents of Pennsylvania suffer from knee pain. This is often due to knee osteoarthritis. It is estimated that there are more than 27 million people in the U.S. 25 or older who have symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. While the majority of people who suffer from the condition are 50 years of age or older, the medical community is finding that the condition is becoming more common in younger patients, as well. If you are suffering with knee pain, contact Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania to meet with a skilled knee pain doctor Pottstown, PA patients trust.

Types of Osteoarthritis (OA)

There are two types of knee osteoarthritis a person can have:

  •       Primary: This type is also referred to as degenerative osteoarthritis. Arthritis is the only condition. It is unknown as the exact cause of this type; however, it is believed to be the result of wear and tear on the joints.
  •       Secondary: This type of osteoarthritis is caused by another factor or condition. For example, if a patient has suffered some injury to their knee, the injury can cause damage to the cartilage and joint, resulting in arthritis. Other factors that can cause the condition include disease and obesity.

In both types of osteoarthritis, the cartilage that cushions the joints of the knee deteriorates to the point that the bones rub against one another. With little to no cartilage protecting the nerves, the patient suffers great discomfort and pain.

Who Is at Risk of Osteoarthritis?

As a knee pain doctor in Pottstown, PA can explain, there are several risk factors that make people more at risk for developing the condition, including:

  •       Age: The older we get, the more use and wear and tear have been put on our knee joints. The more use your knee joints have had, the more risk you are of developing the condition.
  •       Gender: Although the medical community has not been able to determine why, women get OA more than men do.
  •       Genetics: Your genetic makeup may also increase your risk of having osteoarthritis. If other members of your family suffer from the condition, you may be at a higher risk of also developing the disease.
  •       Injuries to the knee joint: When a person suffers an injury to the knee, they have a greater risk of developing OA.
  •       Obesity: When a person is carrying excessive weight, this places more stress on their knee joints, causing more wear and tear, and higher risk of developing osteoarthritis.
  •       Other medical conditions: If a person already suffers with certain medical conditions, their risk of OA is higher. These conditions include diabetes, gout, and arthritis.
  •       Type of Occupation: If a person works at an occupation where they are constantly putting stress on their knee joints, there is a high chance of getting osteoarthritis. Examples of these occupations include carpenters and plumbers.

A Knee Doctor for Athletes

It is widely known that athletes, including football players, MMA fighters, dancers, and gymnasts, are more prone to injuries. No athlete wants to suffer an injury, let alone an injury to the knee. When this occurs, he or she will be hindered in their ability to play, perform, or engage in their activity. In general, an athlete with a knee injury will want to recover as fast as possible; therefore, they will seek the most effective, practical treatment.

As a knee doctor in Pottstown, PA, we treat injured athletes every day. No two injuries are exactly alike; therefore, our treatment recommendations can vary, but often include physical therapy, cortisone injections, fluoroscope injections, and/or PRP treatment. If you have a knee injury and are looking for the best treatment, call a knee pain doctor in Pottstown, PA

The Most Common Knee Injuries Athletes Experience

The knee is both strong and vulnerable. Athletes may engage in vigorous activity that places a great amount of force onto the knee and the surrounding areas. As a result, the knee can be more prone to injury. 

As a Pottstown, PA knee doctor might explain to you, the knee is a very intricate part of the body. However, it is delicate and lacks flexibility. Therefore, even a simple pull or overstretch of the knee can lead to a serious injury. Most knee injuries occur when the knee is twisted or rotated in a way that it cannot support the body. This is why athletes, particularly those who might use their knees, are more prone to knee injuries. 

Tendonitis 

Around the knee is the tendon, and this connects the shinbone to the kneecap. Athletes who engage in repetitive motions often suffer from tendonitis. 

Meniscal Tear

The meniscus is an area of cartilage that absorbs shock to the knee. When the knee is twisted or rotated in a way that should not occur, the meniscus can tear. This may result in extreme swelling and stiffness. It is often painful and can be treated through physical therapy and PRP treatment. A knee doctor Pottstown, PA has to offer can evaluate your condition and help you to understand what type of treatment is best. 

Fractures

When experiencing a knee fracture, it’s not uncommon for the area affected to either be the kneecap or patella. Sports injuries are one of the most prevalent ways for the knee to fracture. 

Torn ACL (anterior cruciate ligament)

The ACL connects the femur and tibia. When an athlete makes an abrupt movement, such as a sudden stop, the ACL can be torn. This is a particularly painful injury that often requires physical therapy and surgery. 

Have You Suffered a Knee Injury? Call Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania Today

Knee injuries are often painful. When an athlete is injured, they might also be stressed, discouraged, and emotional. At Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania, we understand your concerns and desire to return to your sport. It is our goal to assess your injury and symptoms to determine the best course of treatment. Treatment options may include:

  • Fluoroscope injections
  • Physical therapy
  • PRP treatment
  • Ice or heat
  • Cortisone injections
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • + More

Understanding Acute Knee Injuries

As it relates to injuries of the knee, there are two basic types: acute and chronic. People often misunderstand the difference between the two, thinking that it relates to the seriousness of the injury or the severity of pain. Actually, the difference between the two is the time frame in which each occurs. A chronic injury occurs over a long period of time; patellar tendonitis is an example. An acute injury of the knee occurs suddenly.

Causes

An acute injury of the knee often results from trauma, such as a blow to the knee or an impact from a fall. Sudden twisting motions can also result in acute knee injuries. The pain from an acute injury is often very sharp. Weightbearing or movement of the injured knee may be difficult, if not impossible, due to the intense pain.

Varieties

There are many varieties of knee injuries that can occur acutely. Here are a few examples.

  • Fractures: The knee joint consists of three bones: the proximal tibia (shinbone), the distal femur (thighbone), and the patella (kneecap). A sudden forceful impact can cause any of these bones to break.
  • Dislocation: A sudden blow can force the kneecap out of its normal position, resulting in a dislocation. The patella is particularly vulnerable to dislocation because it is a “floating” bone, only held in place by muscles and tendons.
  • Sprains: Ligaments are tissue bands that hold the bones together at the joint. There are four main ligaments in your knee and stretching or tearing them can result in sprain injuries.
  • Cartilage Tears: Cartilage is a tough but flexible substance that provides cushioning and protection of the joints. The meniscus is a cartilage structure in the knee that works as a shock absorber. Each knee has two menisci, and sudden impact or twisting of the knee can cause meniscus tearing, which can cause intense pain and loss of mobility.

Treatment

The first step in dealing with an acute knee injury is to control the pain and swelling that often results. Ice, elevation, compression, and rest are helpful in this regard. Medications are sometimes helpful to reduce pain and discomfort. Many acute knee injuries get better on their own or with conservative treatments such as physical therapy. However, if these are not helpful at relieving the pain, surgery may sometimes be necessary.

Subacute Injuries

There is another category of subacute injuries that cannot comfortably be categorized as either acute or chronic. One definition of a subacute condition is an acute injury that arises from a chronic condition.

Chiropractic care may be helpful at rehabilitating acute and subacute injuries of the knee. Contact our office to schedule an appointment.

For a consultation with a leading knee doctor in Pottstown, PA, please call Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania today.

Overuse Injuries

Suffering from a sports injury to your knee may mean you need the help of a knee doctor Pottstown, PA residents rely on after they are injured. Many people understand that they are more likely to be injured when they play sports. Especially rough sports, like hockey, football, and rugby can cause people to go to their doctor more often because they are trying to recover from injuries. However, while acute injuries can certainly cause knee pain and damage, it is also possible that you will want to visit your Pennsylvania knee doctor because you are suffering from an overuse injury. Just because your injury may not be acute does not mean you should feel free to walk, run, or jump like you normally would. It is best to take care of the injured knee and call our office as soon as possible. 

What is an overuse injury?

An overuse is exactly what it sounds like: when you use certain parts of your body repeatedly, you can eventually do damage to that part of the body because you are doing the same thing over and over again. As a Pottstown, PA knee doctor knows, an overuse injury may also be called a repetitive motion injury. For example, if you are a mover and you are constantly going up and down flights of steps every day to help move families in and out of homes, you may develop an overuse injury in your knee. If you go for a jog every day it is also possible to develop knee joint problems from this constant motion. Common types of overuse injuries are:

  • Plica Syndrome: When your knee ligaments begin to fold or get thicker.
  • Tendinitis. When your tendons become inflamed. 
  • Iliotibial Band Syndrome: When the fibrous tissue that lines the outside of your thigh becomes inflamed and irritated. 
  • Bursitis: When the little sacs of fluid that help to lubricate your knee become inflamed. 
  • Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome: When you use your knee so much or injure it in some way that it is in pain. 

Your knee is one of the most used parts of your body and if you do not take care of it when it shows signs of damage, that may mean you need a knee replacement surgery down the line. Instead, our Pottstown, PA knee doctor believes you should come to see us at the first sign of injury. We believe in helping people with knee problems find help for their injuries through natural care and rehabilitative methods. If you are interested in seeing what our knee doctor in Pottstown, PA can do for you, schedule your appointment now with Premier Osteoarthritis Centers of Pennsylvania.

Joint-friendly Exercises for Arthritis

Stretches: Flexible Feet

Having flexible feet is useful for everyday living. Even walking becomes easier with more flexible joints in the feet. To keep toes and ankles more flexible, follow these steps:

  • Face a wall and place your palms flat on it, one foot forward, and one foot back.
  • Leave your heels on the floor and lean forward.
  • You’ll feel a gentle pull in the calf of your back leg and the Achilles tendon at the back of the ankle.
  • Hold for 30 seconds.
  • Do three repetitions.
  • Then reverse the position of your legs and repeat.

Tai Chi and Arthritis

Tai chi is a gentle movement exercise that originated in China and is now practiced worldwide. In tai chi, practitioners work slowly and smoothly through a system of movements and postures that are meant to connect the body with the mind. In general, tai chi proponents point to the following health benefits:

  • Greater strength
  • Improved flexibility
  • Improved balance
  • Coordination
  • Less stress and anxiety
  • Better concentration and memory
  • Better posture

Recent research studies suggest the following benefits of tai chi:

  • Greater strength
  • Better endurance
  • Improved walking

Arthritis Australia and the Australian Rheumatology Association endorse a special set of 12 tai chi movements called Tai Chi for Arthritis, which were designed in 1997 specifically to help ease joint pain and stiffness for those with arthritis.

For Arthritis Health, Avoid High-Impact Exercise

High-impact exercises put too much pressure on your joints if you suffer from arthritis. They can lead to flare-ups, increase the wear and tear on joints, and make daily life more painful and difficult. Unless otherwise advised by a doctor, try to avoid activities like

  • jogging,
  • running,
  • tennis on hard pavement,
  • lifting heavy weights,
  • basketball, and
  • indoor volleyball.

Balance Rest and Exercise for Arthritis Relief

While staying active is one of the best forms of self-care for arthritis, remember that rest is also critical for ongoing health. When it comes to any exercise, follow these tips:

  • Pace yourself
  • Don’t overdo it
  • If it causes pain, stop immediately

Lots of bedrest can help you feel better over the short term, but try not to overdo it. If you stay off your feet too much, your muscles get weak and your joint pain can actually get worse. The key here is balance.

Exercise for Arthritis: Get a Personal Trainer

Learning to work out with arthritis can be a challenge. To make it easier and to get better results faster, look for a personal trainer with experience helping people with arthritis. Try to find someone who has worked with clients who have physical limitations, who are overweight, or who are senior citizens. A trainer like that will understand your unique challenges and be able to advise you about the workout routines that will work best for your body, and give you a sense of what equipment to try and what equipment and/or methods to avoid.

What are risk factors for a knee injury?

High-impact sports, including running, basketball, football, hockey, soccer, cycling, and others, can increase the risk of knee pain and injury. Sports where shoes with cleats are worn and sharp, sudden changes in direction are made, along with contact sports, are common risks for knee injury. Exercise, such as high-impact cardiovascular activity or yoga, can also cause knee injury.

The elderly may be at higher risk for knee injury due to falls and osteoporosis.

Women may be at higher risk for anterior cruciate ligament injuries (ACL) and patellar injuries. This is due to the anatomy of a woman’s hips and femur and the angle at which the knee is tilted. This can lead to chondromalacia patella (CMP), an inflammation or irritation of the underside of the patella.

Being overweight can be a risk factor for knee injury, as excess weight puts more stress on the lower extremity joints.

Overuse and overtraining, improper or insufficient training for a sport, or not properly rehabilitating acute injuries can also predispose a person to knee injuries.

What are knee injury symptoms and signs?

The symptoms and signs of knee injury are related to the type of injury and the part of the knee that was injured.

The main symptoms of knee injury are as follows:

  • Knee pain
  • Swelling
  • Heat
  • Redness
  • Tenderness
  • Difficulty bending the knee
  • Problems weight bearing
  • Clicking or popping sounds
  • Locking of the knee
  • Feeling of instability
  • Bruising

If the injury is acute, the main symptoms will most likely be knee pain and swelling. If the injury is chronic or from overuse, the symptoms of clicking, popping, and intermittent pain will be more prominent.

What specialists treat knee injuries?

A knee injury may first be examined and treated by a primary care provider (PCP), such as a family practitioner, an internist, or a child’s pediatrician. If you go to the emergency room for your knee injury, you will be seen by an emergency medicine specialist.

If the knee injury is severe, you may be referred to an orthopedist (a specialist in injuries of the musculoskeletal system) or an orthopedic surgeon. If your knee injury is related to sports, you may see a sports medicine specialist.

Other medical professionals who may be involved in treating your injured knee include physical therapists, occupational therapists, or other rehabilitation specialists.

How do health care professionals diagnose a knee injury?

The diagnosis of a knee injury is made by a physician based on history, physical examination, and sometimes the use of X-rays or MRIs.

Depending on the how the knee was injured and whether there are accompanying medical issues, the doctor will perform specific tests involving bending or twisting the knee to test the stability of the ligaments and check for damage to the cartilage. Knee-bending tests done by your doctor are designed to isolate specifically which ligament or part of the cartilage has been damaged.

Further testing with X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs may be necessary to evaluate the extent of the injury and help determine treatment and prognosis. X-rays and CT scans are used to assess for bony injuries (fractures), and MRIs are used to evaluate soft-tissue damage (ligaments and cartilage).