The knee is one of the largest joints in the human body. As a major weight-bearing joint, it’s understandable that it’s one of the most frequently injured joints. Knee pain can be very painful, and some knee conditions can require surgery, however, most of the time, pain can be eased by gentle treatment, good advice and exercise.
The knee joint is between the femur (thigh bone) and the tibia and fibula (leg bones), held together and stabilised by the anterior cruciate ligament, posterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and lateral collateral ligament. The knee is a hinge joint – it can straighten, bend and twist.
Common symptoms of knee pain include:
- Weakness or instability
- Popping or clicking noises
- Inability to straighten or bend the knee
- Pain from sitting
- Pain from running or walking
Damage, strain or sprain of the structures of the knee can result in a number of symptoms and all structures of the knee can be injured in different ways. Complaints can be a result of repeated strain on the knee, or a sudden injury. However, in many cases, knee pain is not caused by the knee itself. Arthritic hips can refer pain to the knee area, whilst a lot of back issues can also lead to knee, thigh or groin pain.
How osteopathy can help relieve knee joint pain
Whilst more serious knee problems can require surgery, many of the strains, sprains, muscle imbalances and ligament problems can be treated by an osteopath. Before devising a treatment plan, osteopaths will conduct an examination of your knees, ankles, feet, back and pelvis, as well as reviewing your symptoms and medical history. They can then use a combination of gentle hands-on techniques to help improve your joint mobility, decrease inflammation, stretch your muscles and help rebalance your body’s mechanics.
An osteopath will often also provide advice on strengthening exercises and stretches to help increase the flexibility and strength of your knee. In some cases, osteopaths may feel that some knee conditions may require further medical intervention, or may refer patients for further investigations, such as MRI scans.
Whilst every individual is different and it’s hard to say exactly how long it takes for osteopathic treatment to help correct knee problems, minor injuries in young and healthy people should normally be resolved within a few weeks. For older people suffering from degenerative problems, regular osteopathic treatments can help to keep strength and stability in the knee joint.
If you are suffering from symptoms of knee pain, contact us today to arrange a consultation. For our Halesowen practice, call 0121 585 8555, or for our Wombourne practice, please call 01902 894 894.