Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that most commonly affects weight-bearing joints such as the knee. With time, the cartilage that surrounds the ends of the bones thins and wears, resulting in excess forces transmitted to the underlying bone. Symptoms may include joint pain particularly with weight bearing activities, stiffness, locking and swelling.
Treatment for knee arthritis includes conservative measures such as weight loss, physical therapy to maintain range of motion and to strengthen muscles. Additional strategies may include education in joint protection techniques and evaluation for appropriate assistive devices. Medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) or other analgesics may be utilized for pain relief.
More invasive options include corticosteroid or sodium hyaluronate injections performed with the use of image guidance (ultrasound or fluoroscopy). Emerging treatment options such as platelet rich plasma (PRP) may also be considered where more conventional treatments have failed.