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Osteoarthritis Pain Relief in Surprise AZ

Knee Arthritis – A Very Common Problem

Knee pain is one of the more common musculoskeletal complaints among adults. So if you are looking for osteoarthritis pain relief in Surprise AZ, read more about why seeing one of our clinical experts is a great first choice.

Because the knee is critical to so many movements of the body, this type of pain can be debilitating. In many cases, the source of this pain is the result of torn or degenerative cartilage in the knee.

Knee Anatomy & Osteoarthritis

The knee contains two types of cartilage, articular cartilage and meniscus cartilage. The meniscus cartilage in the knee includes two parts, a medial (inside) meniscus and a lateral (outside) meniscus. Together they are referred to as menisci. In addition to providing lubrication and joint stability, these menisci act as tiny shock absorbers in the knee and provide a critical cushion between the thighbone and the shinbone.

These menisci are particularly prone to tearing, although sometimes they just wear out as a result of degeneration with age. In fact, a torn meniscus is often seen in the nine million Americans with knee osteoarthritis.

Typical symptoms of a torn meniscus may include:

• Stiffness and swelling in and around the knee

• Pain and tenderness along the joint line or general knee pain

• Catching or locking of the knee

Meniscal tears with concomitant osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee are a common source of pain and disability. Until fairly recently, the best course of action for treating these types of meniscal tears has been unclear in the past. However, results from a Meniscal Tear in Osteoarthritis Research (MeTeOR) trial published in the England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) indicate that physical therapy has proven to be as effective as surgery.

At six and twelve month intervals, patients who had standardized physical therapy alone showed similar improvement in pain and functional status of the knee as those who had undergone arthroscopic surgery to repair their torn meniscus.

As the NEJM report points out, not all symptomatic meniscal tears need to be repaired surgically. As a result, knee pain specialists in Surprise have been able to help their patients avoid the often unnecessary risks and expenses of surgery.

Drug-Free Approaches Recommended First for Chronic Pain

Many of our knee arthritis patients have suffered with knee pain for months, even years.  Because of the addictive side effects of prescription pain pills, the Centers for Disease Control are now recommending physical therapy first in this recent publication:

Its first recommendation: “Nonpharmacologic therapy and nonopioid pharmacologic therapy are preferred for chronic pain.”

“Based on contextual evidence, many nonpharmacologic therapies, including physical therapy, weight loss for knee osteoarthritis, complementary and alternative therapies (e.g., manipulation, massage, and acupuncture), psychological therapies such as CBT, and certain interventional procedures can ameliorate chronic pain,” the draft states. “In particular, there is high-quality evidence that exercise therapy (a prominent modality in physical therapy) for hip … or knee … osteoarthritis reduces pain and improves function immediately after treatment and that the improvements are sustained for at least 2–6 months.”



Physical Therapy is the Clear First Choice

To learn more about eliminating your pain and improving the functional status of your knee, please contact us today, and our team will work with you to devise a program to help you control your knee pain and get back to your active lifestyle.

Knee Replacement Rehab in Surprise

Vital Care Rehabilitation specializes in joint replacement rehabilitation

We see patients on a regular basis that have arthritis-related knee pain.  Sometimes physical therapy isn’t enough and patients need surgery. For osteoarthritis of the knee, a total knee replacement (TKR) is the most common procedure.  It’s no simple surgery either but the pain relief can be significant.  In fact, most of the total knee arthroplasty (another name for replacement) patients we see are very satisfied once the recover from the post-surgical pain.  However, the recovery process doesn’t end when the pain resolves.  After replacement surgery, you need a good physical therapist that provides knee replacement rehab in Surprise.

Complete Rehabilitation for Total Knee Replacements

While pain relief is the primary reason patients have a TKR, the rehabilitation process involves much more.  Our physical therapists help you recover your range of motion, strength, help you walk again without an assistive device (front wheel walker), and help you recover your function.  The good news is that there is good scientific research to support seeing a physical therapist after surgery (there’s evidence that seeing a PT before surgery is also beneficial).

The Process Starts with Range of Motion

It’s important to recover your range of motion, or your ability to bend and straighten your knee.  You make not realize it but you bend your knee quite a bit when you sit, walk, or bend down to pick up something.  For these reasons, range of motion is one of the first things our clinicians work on with you.  Exercises that you perform at home and in our clinic, in combination with hands-on techniques will help you recover your range of motion.

Strength Training is Critical

Your quadriceps muscles help straight and control your knee joint.  With the chronic pain of osteoarthritis, these muscles become inhibited and slowly lose their strength.  Working on not only your quadriceps muscles along with your hamstrings, hip muscles, and calf muscles are an important part of the rehabilitation process.  In fact, while most patients experience a significant decrease in knee pain after knee replacement, weakness is a very common complaint.  Strengthening is a critical element of the rehabilitation process.

Functional Exercise Should Be Part of Your Program

Functional exercises are those that support the recovery of daily activities like getting out of a chair, ascending/descending stairs, walking on uneven surfaces, getting in and out of a car, etc.  These are the kinds of exercises that we may educate our patients to perform.  Why?  There’s good evidence to suggest that functional exercise should be part of your rehab program.  Consider this research report:

Six trials were identified, five of which were suitable for inclusion in meta-analyses. There was a small to moderate standardized effect size (0.33, 95% confidence interval 0.07 to 0.58) in favor of functional exercise for function three to four months postoperatively. There were also small to moderate weighted mean differences of 2.9 (0.61 to 5.2) for range of joint motion and 1.66 (−1 to 4.3) for quality of life in favor of functional exercise three to four months postoperatively. Benefits of treatment were no longer evident at one year.

Interventions including physiotherapy functional exercises after discharge result in short term benefit after elective primary total knee arthroplasty. Effect sizes are small to moderate, with no long term benefit.


In conclusion, knee pain relief starts with a good surgeon and knee replacement.  However, complete recovery should involve a comprehensive physical therapy program…and that’s what we do very well.

If you are looking for trusted knee replacement rehab in Surprise, give us a call.  We can help.

Call us today at (623) 544-0300

An Exceptional Knee Pain Specialist In Surprise

Looking For A Knee Pain Specialist In Surprise?

When you need a knee pain specialist in Surprise, you have some choices. Before you make an appointment, it’s smart to think about your knee pain, your lifestyle, and what you hope to get out of treatment. Here are a few questions to ask yourself (and to ask your knee specialist) and some things to think about to make sure you get the best treatment for you.

What is the Cause of Your Knee Pain?

What do you think is the cause of your knee pain? In the case of an obvious injury, you’ll know exactly what happened. But all knee pain is not created equal.

Knee pain can be caused my many things – sports injury, of course, is a very common cause. Often the most frustrating type of knee pain is sporadic, but frequent enough to limit the activity you’d like to do. Runners and cyclists often have overuse and fatigue injuries – and contrary to common belief, “just rest” isn’t always the best road to recovery.

Sometimes knee pain can be induced by a weakness in another part of the leg (ankle, hips) or something related to an activity that has apparently little to do with the knee.

Although a knee problem is often caused by an injury to one or more of these structures, it may have another cause. Some people are more likely to develop knee problems than others. Many jobs, sports and recreation activities, getting older, or having a disease such as osteoporosis or arthritis increase your chances of having problems with your knees.

Injuries are the most common cause of knee problems. Sudden (acute) injuries may be caused by a direct blow to the knee or from abnormal twisting, bending the knee, or falling on the knee. Pain, bruising, or swelling may be severe and develop within minutes of the injury. Nerves or blood vessels may be pinched or damaged during the injury. The knee or lower leg may feel numb, weak, or cold; tingle; or look pale or blue. Reference:

Knee Pain Treatment That’s Right For You

When you’re looking for a knee pain specialist nearby, you’ll want to find one that understands many different types of knee pain, and appropriate treatment for each. Among the things you’ll want to consider:

  • What kind of experience does your knee pain specialist have?
  • How will treatment fit into your schedule?
  • How soon can you return to regular activities? A training schedule?
  • What sort of follow-up treatment and support can you expect?

Knee pain and injuries can be very frustrating, and they can have long-term ramifications for your overall health. Look for a physical therapist who understands, and can help you through the initial recovery as well as find ways to manage your activity (no matter how competitive you are), so that knee pain doesn’t become a regular part of your life.

If you are experiencing knee pain the Physical Therapists at Vital Care Rehabilitation can help. Give us a call today at (623) 544-0300.