Many people experience knee pain throughout their life, as a knee pain doctor in Austin, TX knows. Knee pain can happen because you pushed too hard when you were working out, you were carrying heavy groceries when you went up four flights to your apartment, or because you tweaked it when you played a pickup game of football over the weekend. Whatever the reason, knee pain can come and go or it can linger and make daily activities much harder. Experiencing minor knee pain is usually normal because it often goes away on its own. However, if you are feeling any pain that has not improved for several weeks or has particularly severe symptoms like excessive swelling or stiffness, you may want to see a new pain doctor so that you can have it evaluated. When you are experiencing knee pain and are looking for a solution to help you get back on your feet comfortably, turn to the team at Austin Physical Therapy. We can help you understand what is causing your knee pain and learn which pain management solution is right for you.
How will a knee doctor diagnose your knee pain?
There are a few ways that a knee pain doctor in Austin, Texas may choose to diagnose your knee pain. During your initial physical exam, a knee pain doctor will do a series of tests and ask you several questions.They will ask you about your medical history, what symptoms you are experiencing and how long you have been experiencing your symptoms. They will ask you questions about your lifestyle such as your level of activity and the type of work that you do. When you go in for your first appointment, here are a few questions you can expect to answer?
- What were you doing when you noticed the knee pain for the first time?
- How long has the knee pain been going on?
- Where is your knee pain located (to the side, above your knee cap, behind your knee)?
- What medication have you been taking, if any, for your knee pain?
- Do certain activities make your knee pain worse?
- Has your knee pain been bad enough to interrupt daily activities?
Be honest about your answers and make sure your responses are as accurate as possible. A knee doctor will need to know as much information as they can so that they can correctly diagnose and treat your condition. Explain your symptoms as clearly and descriptively as you can. The doctor will search for the source of your pain and tell you what treatment options will be most suitable for you. Some treatment options may not be appropriate for you so make sure that you are giving the doctor accurate information.
These are all important questions to answer so that your doctor can get an understanding of what kind of treatment will follow and what other kinds of diagnostic techniques may be needed to determine precisely where the knee pain is and what caused it.
But I didn’t do anything to my knee. What happened?
It is still possible to have knee pain if you didn’t specifically injure your knee. Your knee may have pain because you injured another area of your body, including your hips, thigh, lower back, or calf. Your knee could have an issue because of repetitive stress. For example, if you have knee pain and are overweight, your excess weight could be putting too much pressure and strain on your knees. Another scenario could be that you bumped your knee and did not realize it. It is also common for strenuous exercise and overuse of the knee to result in an injury. You may be causing damage to your knee before you realize it. If your activity level recently changed and you are overexerting another part of your body, your knee may still have pain that needs to be dealt with in addition to other pain.
How to Treat Chronic Knee Pain
Knee pain can be debilitating, especially if it is chronic. Even if you can function well otherwise, your chronic pain can cause you to be unable to navigate stairs, do basic exercise, or even sit on low surfaces and on the floor.
Your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX may be able to diagnose and treat your chronic pain. Read on to learn how specialists at a medical center like Austin Physical Therapy tackle knee pain.
When you first meet with your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX, they will ask you several questions to determine the source and frequency of your pain. For instance, they may ask whether just one knee is bothering you or both. You may need to describe when the pain is most noticeable.
If your pain occurs several times a week or each day, your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX will classify that as chronic knee pain. Unfortunately, if your pain is constant without letting up at all, that is also considered chronic knee pain.
Once you are diagnosed with chronic knee pain and your team of doctors at Austin Physical Therapy determine the root cause of it, they will take care to manage your pain. You may be prescribed anti-inflammatory medicine as well as pain relievers. If you are interested in a holistic approach, you may even be given suggestions on how to manage pain through some dietary measures.
When your pain is under control or there is a plan of management in place, your doctors will move on to treatments and therapy. The best type of treatment for your chronic knee pain may be physical therapy. Your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX may combine physical therapy with another form of therapy or with a medicine-based regimen to keep the pain at bay.
It is important to remember that not every chronic knee pain diagnosis requires the same approach in terms of treatment. A lot of your road to pain-free knees will be determined by the root cause of your pain, whether it be injury or a degenerative joint issue.
Working with a knee pain doctor in Austin, TX does not have to be cut and dry. In addition to physical and medicinal therapy, you and your doctor can continue to discuss alternative therapies that might supplement your existing treatment. Some examples of alternative therapy may include aquatic exercise, massage, and other low impact activities and approaches.
3 Common Categories of Knee Pain
People of all ages can suffer from knee pain, and your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX can provide a more thorough diagnosis for the underlying cause of your discomfort. Medical conditions, injury or poor health practices can contribute to pain. Once a diagnosis is achieved, you can work with the Austin Physical Therapy team to restore movement and reduce discomfort. A majority of the conditions involving knee pain will fall into one of three categories.
When the knee is injured, any of the surrounding tendons, ligaments or fluid-filled sacs in the knee joint and surrounding areas can also feel the impact. This can lead to a number of more complicated issues that involve bones, ligaments and cartilage. An ACL injury involves a tear on one of the ligaments that connect the thighbone to the shinbone. Fractures are broken bones in the knee or knee cap that can occur through car accidents, falls, sporting accidents or impact events. The meniscus is the cartilage between the shinbone and thighbone that can be torn with sudden, weight-bearing twists to the knee.
Injuries can lead to inflammation, which causes small problems to become more serious. Knee bursitis is inflammation in the small fluid-filled sacs that help cushion the out of the knee joint. This can create discomfort and friction with the way the ligaments and tendons move over the joint. Tendinitis is another form of inflammation, but between the tendons that attach the muscles to bones. Patellar tendonitis occurs from an injury to the patella (kneecap).
Your knee pain doctor in Austin, TX can help determine if your pain is related to the structure or development of your body. There are times when a piece of cartilage or bones breaks off and lodges into the joint space. This can affect the way the knee is able to move, reducing motion and creating pain. Dislocation is when elements slip out of place. Other bodily injuries can impact the way you walk, putting stress on the knee.
With arthritis, one or more joints experience tenderness and swelling, and the condition often worsens with age. Though there are more than 100 variations of arthritis, the ones that most commonly affect the knee include gout, osteoarthritis, septic arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Any discomfort can make walking and other activities more difficult. Treatment and therapy programs from Austin Physical Therapy can make it easier to bend, straighten or stretch the knee, helping bring back mobility without pain.
When Should I See a Knee Pain Doctor?
Once you realize that you have been experiencing knee pain that has not improved for several weeks, you should strongly consider seeing a knee pain doctor. It is crucial that your knee pain is resolved as soon as possible before it worsens. Once a knee condition worsens it can be difficult to treat it and it may be more costly. It is better to have your needs while you wait then wait too long until it is too late to treat it. If you notice moderate pain, instability, swelling, tenderness or a deformity that you can clearly see, such as a twisted knee, schedule a consultation with a new pain doctor right away.
Where can I go for pain relief?
When you need pain relief for your knees, the physical therapists at Austin Physical Therapy are here to help. They have treated patients with a variety of knee injuries and conditions. They will provide you quality treatment so that you can recover in no time and resume your daily life. Don’t wait to have your knee treated. Treating your knee can allow you to improve your mobility so that you can have an easier time walking and doing other activities. Knee pain can be debilitating and you want to get the help you need. Allow a doctor to provide you the treatment that will enable you to get lasting relief from pain so that you can rely on your knees for everyday activities and live a healthier and pain-free life.Speak with our Austin, Texas knee pain doctor today for more information.