While any joint pain can be uncomfortable, knee pain can make it difficult to do even the simplest every day activity: walking up or down the stairs, bending down to pick up the dog’s food bowl, getting into a car, or even just getting out of bed in the morning become challenging. We tend not to notice how integral the knee is to any kind of movement until it hurts every time we flex or extend it.
People try all sorts of home remedies, from wraps, heat compresses, and cold packs to Aleve, aspirin, and rest to reduce the pain. Many give up and decide to just grin and bear the pain. But before you opt to live in discomfort or give up favorite leisure activities, give your chiropractor the opportunity to address the issues that are at the root of your knee pain. Your practitioner can then apply the appropriate chiropractic techniques that can alleviate the pain as well as design an exercise and treatment program to help keep the pain at bay.
Your visit will begin with a exam of your knee so the chiropractor can determine the best approach to treat your particular situation. For example, is the problem with the knee directly or is it secondary to another issue, such displacements in the hips or lower back that over time can strain the knees.
Typical treatments for knee pain include icing to reduce inflammation, massage techniques, and chiropractic manipulation and mobilization that can help the joint’s range of motion. The advantage of chiropractic care is that it is non-invasive and does not rely on prescription medications that can be expensive and have undesirable side-effects.
For years, steroids shots were considered an option for certain joint pain in knees and elbows and into the area around the spinal cord to treat back pain. And for anyone suffering from tendonitis in their elbow, cortisone was a miracle drug in alleviating the pain. But a new study published online in Anesthesiology, suggest that it might not have been the steroid responsible for the relief but the mere act of injection a liquid substance, meaning saline could be just as effective as cortisone.
Researchers analyzed the results of 43 studies with more than 3,600 participants who received various types of injections for back pain. As was anticipated, it seemed epidural steroid injections provided more relief than steroid injections into the muscles. However, the study also found little difference in relief when comparing steroid and non-steroid epidural injections. That led the researchers to suggest any liquid injected during an epidural can help reduce inflammation, enhance blood flow to the nerves, and clean out scar tissue.
The lead researcher believes doctors should consider even using steroids in patients who are at high risk. At the very least it gives patients another drug-free option when dealing with chronic knee pain.