Arthrosis of the knee joint (gonarthrosis) is a degenerative disease in which cartilage thinning occurs. According to statistics, every fifth inhabitant of the planet suffers from this pathology. This article will discuss the main causes of arthrosis, its symptoms at each stage, as well as methods of diagnosis and treatment.
Every day, the knee joints are under great strain when walking. After all, they have to withstand the weight of the whole body. As a result, there is a gradual wear of the cartilage tissue, which is the cause of pathological changes in the knees.
The risk group includes people:
In most people over the age of 40, it is possible to detect the presence of arthrosis in the second or later stages of development.
Of course, changes in cartilage tissue cannot pass without symptoms. With an illness, a person may complain about:
Important!The disease does not appear abruptly, it develops over many years. Pain in the early stages may be insignificant, but over time, there is a persistent increase.
At this stage, gonarthrosis is just beginning to develop, therefore, for a person, the process is almost asymptomatic. However, some signs can still be noticed.
A person often begins to feel tiredness in the legs, to notice a slight decrease in the mobility of one or two knee joints. This phenomenon is especially characteristic in the morning, in the first minutes after waking up.
As a rule, the diagnosis of the disease at this stage occurs by chance, during the passage of an X-ray. On it, the doctor may notice some irregularities in the cartilage tissue. It is also possible to narrow the gap between the parts of the joint.
The pathology of the knee joint begins to manifest itself more pronounced. The appearance of pain syndrome is characteristic, which is provoked by any additional load on the joint.
REFERENCE.At this stage, the pain goes away on its own, after a long rest.
In addition, during the second stage, symptoms such as:
If you find discomfort in the knee area, you need to see a doctor so that he can prescribe the right treatment.
As we age, joints begin to respond to changes in weather and pressure.
It is the extreme, final stage of the disease, in which the gap between the bones is completely absent.
REFERENCE.Most orthopedists classify the fourth stage as the third. This is due to the similarity of symptoms and the complexity of timely diagnosis.
Since there is no gap, movement of the joint is simply impossible.
In addition, the patient suffers from unbearable, constant pain, which is relieved only by strong pain relievers. But after a time, when the action of the pill or injection stops, the unpleasant symptom reappears.
The examination of the patient begins with his seeking help from a specialist. They can be a therapist or orthopedist.
The doctor listens to complaints, collects anamnesis, conducts an examination. First of all, he will be interested in external changes in the joint, limitation of mobility in its area.
X-rays will help identify abnormalities in the cartilage tissue.
When probing, the patient complains of the appearance of unpleasant sensations, and when the patella is shifted, a crunch is heard.
Important!A diagnosis is impossible after one visual examination by a doctor, even if all the signs of the disease are present. Only a comprehensive examination allows you to give an accurate answer about the pathology occurring in the knee area.
After examination, the doctor prescribes an X-ray to the patient. This is the main method for diagnosing arthrosis of the knee joint of any degree.
An x-ray gives the doctor an idea of the changes occurring in the cartilage tissue of the joint. However, in some cases, the initial stage may not be identified in the image.
If necessary, the doctor may prescribe a second X-ray or computed and magnetic resonance imaging.
When diagnosing gonarthrosis, immediate treatment should be started. This will help stop the progression of the pathology, preventing many complications.
Disease therapy pursues several goals at once. Namely:
Treatment of the disease includes methods such as:
REFERENCE.Drug therapy is the main treatment for the disease. However, it is most successful when combined with other methods.
The drugs used for the treatment of gonarthrosis include:
Important!It is permissible to inject drugs into the joint space no more than 1 time in 7-10 days.
Massage, as well as manual and osteopathic treatment are aimed at:
REFERENCE.Massages and similar procedures should only be performed by a trained person. Otherwise, you can harm and aggravate the condition of the joint.
It is an extreme measure in the treatment of arthrosis, when the disease is extremely advanced and other methods of therapy are powerless. The most commonly used endoprosthetics, in which the affected joint is replaced by an implant.
Prosthetics can be of two types:
Contraindications to prosthetics are:
Another option is corrective osteotomy. In this method, a plate is inserted into the joint to relieve pressure on the affected area of the knee.
It is the regular and correct performance of a series of physical exercises aimed at strengthening the joint and restoring its mobility.
This procedure can be performed independently at home, having previously consulted a specialist.
Following simple rules will prevent the occurrence or aggravation of the destruction of cartilage tissue. For this you need:
Knee arthrosis is a fairly common disease that can go unnoticed for a long time. Despite the asymptomatic onset, gonarthrosis can lead to serious complications, up to and including disability. Therefore, it is so important to timely diagnose and start the necessary treatment.