Healthy people perceive the ability to move without pain as something quite simple and natural. But those who have encountered knee joint arthrosis know how many difficulties are associated with limited mobility.
Today, one in every fifth person on Earth suffers from this disease, which often leads to disability. In addition, in women, arthrosis of the knee joint is much more common than in men.
What is knee arthrosis?
Arthrosis of the knee joint (or gonarthrosis) is a disease that develops as a result of excessive or regular stress on the knee joint. The disease is accompanied by pain, impaired motor functions and deformation of bone and cartilaginous tissue.
Why does knee arthrosis 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 the production of intra-articular fluid. As a result, friction leads to disruption of the bone tissue and cartilage structure of the joint. An inflammation occurs at the site of the damage, which causes pain and restricts its mobility.
Signs of knee arthrosis
The onset of knee joint disease is indicated by the appearance of some symptoms:
- pain, aggravated by stress in the joint;
- sensation of “pain” in the joint;
- crunch (in the absence of timely treatment, it intensifies);
- edema, swelling.
Degree of disease
Three degrees of gonarthrosis can be distinguished.
- external joint deformity is not visible;
- mild swelling;
- the legs are very tired;
- there is pain in the joints when walking, climbing stairs, as well as after a long stay without movement (for example, after sleeping);
- Formation of Baker cyst.
- the occurrence of pain even with a light load;
- there is a crack in the joint when walking or crouching;
- knee mobility decreases (the leg cannot be bent).
- severe pain even at rest;
- sleep disturbance; the
- sensitivity to climate change appears;
- unstable gait is observed;
- decreased knee mobility.
Only a doctor can determine the degree of gonarthrosis.
Examination of a patient with gonarthrosis
Research makes it possible to determine the causes of the development of the pathology and choose the ideal course of therapy.
The following types of research are often used to clarify the diagnosis:
- Clinical and biochemical blood tests. These types of research allow us to differentiate similar but different symptoms in the treatment of arthritis and osteoarthritis.
- Radiography. X-rays of the joints are the most common way to diagnose gonarthrosis, which allows to identify the stage of the disease. But the main disadvantage of this type of diagnosis is that you will not be able to see anything in the photo except the bones.
- Joint ultrasound. Ultrasound can detect fluid and soft tissue abnormalities, as well as visualize cartilage. However, this method is subjective and requires double verification of completion by examination or X-ray examination.
- Magnetic resonance imaging. Magnetic resonance imaging is an incomparable diagnostic method based on the use of magnetic waves. In recent years, this type of study of joint diseases has become the most widespread. The photos reflect the smallest details of the joint: the vasculature, thinning of the soft tissues, swelling and bleeding in the tendons. The first changes in cartilage tissue can be detected thanks to the accuracy of the tomogram.
- Computed tomography. For this type of exam, x-rays are used, like an x-ray exam. But the image can be called more voluminous and detailed, thanks to a series of images.
Treatment of gonarthrosis
The treatment of gonarthrosis must be carried out in the first or second stages of the disease, this will save the joint. However, how to treat knee arthrosis is not an easy matter, as it is a rapidly progressing disease.
Therapy should aim at completely eliminating pain, activating blood circulation in the affected area and restoring the affected area.
Medication for knee arthrosis
- NSAIDs- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, the list of which is quite extensive today. Its main function is to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. NSAIDs do not contain hormones and therefore have a small number of side effects on the body. However, these drugs also have contraindications, which must be familiarized before being taken.
- Chondroprotectors- drugs that nourish and restore cartilage structure. The main difference between chondroprotectors and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is an increase in the production of synovial fluid as a result of ingestion. To obtain the best result, chondroprotectors can be used regularly and over very long strokes. However, in the last stage of arthrosis, they are not very effective.
- Polishes and creams. The use of ointments is recommended by all leading specialists in the field of joint diseases, as they are effective in combating most symptoms: they relieve pain, reduce inflammation and have an antimicrobial effect. All medicines can be divided into 2 groups:
- anti-inflammatories and analgesics;
- vasodilator and heating.
- CompressesAn even more effective remedy in the fight against osteoarthritis. The most common among them: medicinal bile and others.
- Intra-articular injectionsare an expensive but highly effective remedy in the fight against gonarthrosis.
- The most common treatment option is glucocorticoid therapy. These drugs reduce inflammation and relieve pain. But in some cases, side effects can make the patient's condition worse. At risk are people with the following diseases: ulcers, obesity, kidney failure, hypertension.
- Hyaluronic acid-based preparations are safer and, when injected, act as an intra-articular fluid: they nourish cartilage and lubricate joint surfaces.
- Manual therapy and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy and manual therapy can give excellent results in the early stages of the disease (its use in combination with other treatment methods is recommended). In addition to exercise therapy, thermotherapy, electrophoresis and laser therapy, cryotherapy (cold treatment) and homeosiniatrics (the introduction of homeopathic remedies to biologically active points on the body) have recently been used.
- Surgery. In the last stage of gonarthrosis, only surgical treatment is indicated, during which the deformed joint is replaced by a new one made with high-strength materials.
- Use baking soda to remove the swelling. It is necessary to dissolve a few tablespoons of baking soda in 1 spoon of warm water. Apply the resulting mixture to the fabric and attach it to the knee (you can wrap it around the knee joint) and secure with a bandage over it. Leave the compress overnight. Repeat the procedure every day for a week until the swelling is completely removed.
- An equally popular compress is a combination of water and vinegar. The dressing with the medicinal composition is also left overnight.
- Treatment with folk remedies is not limited to compresses of vinegar or soda. Often honey, horseradish, cabbage, kefir, potatoes wrapped in a meat grinder and even oatmeal are applied to the affected area.
- Dandelions are also used as an effective remedy for joint diseases. Most of the time, the infusion of flowers is used to rub problem areas to relieve pain. The most famous recipe: pour harvested dandelion flowers and pour them with triple colony. Let it ferment for 10 days and clean the joints a few times a day.
- A popular recipe for golden mustache ointment. To prepare it, mix the juice of a freshly squeezed plant with baby cream, fat and petroleum jelly.
- Onion decoction is another popular method for relieving pain symptoms. Chop two onions with the peel and boil until the onion softens. And then they use the resulting broth before eating.
- Baths with essential oils of St. John's wort, marigold and eucalyptus have an anti-inflammatory effect on damaged cartilage surfaces.
- Mumiyo can be used to relieve pain with folk remedies. It is recommended to rub a mixture of honey and mumiyo (in the proportion of 100: 3) every night before going to bed. After 5 to 6 days, arthrosis of the knee joint will regress.
- Do not carry heavy loads.
- Avoid stressful situations.
- Wear only comfortable shoes.
- Move more, but watch your movements gently.
- Maintain your diet. Eat meat, fish, seafood and beans at most once every two days.
Osteoarthritis of the knee: treatment with traditional medicine
Sometimes, to cure gonarthrosis, treatment with folk remedies does not replace traditional methods of treatment. These include: compresses, homemade ointments, decoctions and baths.
The treatment of joints at home is indicated in the intervals between medication cycles. Medication intervals should be made to avoid side effects. At that time, treatment of the knee joint can be continued with folk remedies.
And the list of recipes for treatment with folk remedies is not limited to that. There are several methods that are not very popular, but no less effective. So, for example, you can treat arthrosis with leeches, earthworms: these methods give good results, although they are not very common.
Often, folk remedies are effective only in conjunction with drug treatment.
Among other things, it is necessary to limit the load on the knee joint - this will speed up your recovery.
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 is a deformation and destruction of the cartilage layer. As a result, the joint loses its ability to smooth out the constant strokes of the joint itself and the body during the movement during movement.
Don't forget that only timely diagnosis and treatment will help to avoid the unpleasant consequences of osteoarthritis. Take care of your health: seek help from a qualified specialist at the first sign of illness.