Osteoarthritis Doctor Explains the Progression of Osteoarthritis, causes & Treatments
Best osteoarthritis doctor in Hyderabad | Knee osteoarthritis surgery indication
Arthritis and advancing age (aging) go hand in hand. This means osteoarthritis predominantly affects elderly people – both men and women. The risk of developing osteoarthritis increases after age 45 years. Though age is a major risk factor, even young people can also develop osteoarthritis. In general, anyone who is aging is at an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis. Excessive usage of joints, lifestyle, indulgence in high-impact activities, high-impact sports, overuse-related wear and tear of knee joints; a strong family history (hereditary) can increase the risk of osteoarthritis.
Knee osteoarthritis surgery indication
Osteoarthritis of the knee joint cause silent damage over a period of time. In almost all cases symptoms do not show up until the condition reaches advanced stages. The silent progression of osteoarthritis occurs in the following stages causing slow and progressive damage.
Stage 1: In the first stage of the condition the gap between the bones appears normal though the cartilage is slightly damaged. Individuals with osteoarthritis at this stage do not experience any symptoms.
Stage 2: In this stage, the damage appears slight. Even the space between the knee bones appears normal, but dense, thickening, and hardening areas in the cartilage layers stand out in X-rays. Joint stiffness, pain, and discomfort are the common symptoms at this stage of the disease.
Stage 3: At this stage, the cartilage appears thin and the gap between the bones narrows down. The cartilage becomes thin and gradually worn out. X-rays reveal the condition explicitly. Symptoms become severe – pain and discomfort, walking difficulty, moving up and downstairs becomes difficult. Joint inflammation becomes prominent with the build-up of synovial fluid (synovitis). The person having this condition may feel the warmth on touch in the inflamed area of the knee joint.
Stage 4: This stage is the most advanced stage of Osteoarthritis. The space between the knee bone joint narrows down to an extent that bones appear quite close (X-rays show bone-on-bone condition). Joint stiffness becomes quite prominent with severe knee pain and walking difficulty. With less joint space due to less synovial fluid, friction develops. Cartilage breaks down further causing more severe pain and discomfort.
Osteoarthritis of the knee radiology
X-rays reveal bone on bone condition wherein either a very little cartilage is left or the cartilage has completely worn out.
Those who develop this condition have bone lumps and feel the pain that augments with activities – such as walking.
In severe cases, the bones may become deformed and angulated because of asymmetric loss of cartilage.
At this stage, surgical treatment remains the only option.
Causes of osteoarthritis of the knee joint
Age – The Major Risk Factor
Individuals involved in jobs that demand lots of activity including lifting heavy weights, squatting, kneeling and moving up and down stairs are at increased risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee owing to lots of pressure and stress on the knee joint.
Excess Body Weight
Excess body weight put pressure on the knee joint thus increasing the risk of knee joint damage and osteoarthritis. The risk of gaining weight increases in women after menopause. Due to weaker bones after menopause the risk of osteoarthritis increases in women.
High-impact games and Heavy Physical Activities
High-impact games, excessive training, and weight-lifting, intensive physical workouts, long-distance running, overuse of knee joints, playing soccer, hockey, and other high-impact sports can increase the risk of injury and developing osteoarthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is the main reason for osteoarthritis development. People with certain autoimmune, hormonal, and growth disorders are also more likely to develop osteoarthritis. Metabolic disorders including excess growth hormone secretion and iron overload are the higher risk factors for osteoarthritis.
Knee osteoarthritis Treatment in Hyderabad
Treatment Options for the Osteoarthritis of the Knee Joint
An experienced osteoarthritis doctor in Hyderabad decides on treatment for knee osteoarthritis based on the symptoms and the stage of the condition. The main goal of treatment is to relieve pain and improve mobility. Dr. Ratnakar Rao decides the treatment based on the extent of damage caused to the cartilage of the knee joint.
Knee Osteoarthritis Treatment During the First-stage of the Disease
In a majority of the cases, the condition doesn’t cause any symptoms in the initial stages. Symptoms, if present, are mild to moderate. Therefore, pain-relieving medications and some exercises relieve symptoms. Orthopedic doctors refer the case to physiotherapists recommending them a few exercises that will help relieve symptoms and improve the strength and mobility of the knee joint. Some supplements may also be beneficial.
Knee Osteoarthritis Treatment in Hyderabad for the Second-stage Disease
At this stage of the condition also experts recommend physiotherapy, pain-relieving medications, and suggest lifestyle changes. The main objective at this stage of the disease is to relieve pain and minimize damage caused to the knee joint.
Third and Fourth-stage Osteoarthritis Treatment
People who do not consult an osteoarthritis doctor in Hyderabad, in time owing to their slowly progressing and deteriorating condition of their knee joint are at increased risk of developing third and fourth stage osteoarthritis. Furthermore, those who show a careless attitude and ignore their symptoms will also be at risk of progressive arthritis. Once osteoarthritis leads to the third and fourth stages, the damage it induces becomes significant and irreversible. The only and the best option that remains for the affected individual during these stages is knee replacement surgery.
Knee osteoarthritis surgery indication
An experienced and expert orthopedic surgeon or the best osteoarthritis doctor in Hyderabad recommends either partial knee replacement or total knee replacement if a person has third or fourth-stage osteoarthritis with severely impaired knee function.
If you have been suffering from progressively increasing knee pain (not getting better with lifestyle changes and medication); stiffness in the knee joint; decreasing knee movement, activity, and strength; inflammation, swelling, and joint stiffness with chronic knee pain – you must consult Dr. Ratnakar Rao for a comprehensive diagnosis and treatment.