By Matthew Enright AP, DOM (AP1711) – Palm Beach Gardens – If you’ve ever experienced knee pain or are going through it right now, then you are familiar with how agonizing the experience can be. There are many approaches to relieving the discomfort, with acupuncture being one of the most popular and effective ones. Chinese medicine, specifically acupuncture treatment, helps facilitate circulation to the area of the knee. When blood flow is increased, fluid build up that can increase inflammation can be resolved. Swelling that was once apparent will decrease at a quickened pace. Acupuncture also relaxes “knots” or “trigger points” that create pain in the muscle layer. Acupuncture works by allowing the body’s own healing and pain remedying processes to help resolve knee pain naturally.
Clinical studies have proven acupuncture to garner significant results for many types of knee pain, including pain that’s associated with arthritis and runner’s knee. Other studies have shown that acupuncture is effective in reducing pain in patients waiting for knee surgery and can even be used as an alternative to surgery in some patients.
Let’s examine the most common reasons people suffer knee pain and the popular treatments used to treat it.
An injury to the meniscus can cause tearing and ultimately a great deal of pain to the knee. Usually, the injury happens due to the person having overworked the knee. As a result of the injury, the affected knee can lock at one position. Alternatively, the knee keeps clicking when you attempt to move it. As a result of the disturbance of the inner tissues around the knee, swelling follows.
Rupturing of the tendons
The two tendons found in the knee known as patella and quadriceps can rupture, causing severe knee pain. This rupturing can be either partial or complete. Patella tendon rupturing is most common among people aged below 40 years old, while older people tend to suffer rupturing of the quadriceps tendons. Following the injury, the patient finds it very painful to stretch their leg. In the case of patella rupturing, the affected part moves visibly upward or downward from its former position.
The dislocation of the knee cap
If you are a sportsperson, then may have experienced this injury at some point in your career. That’s because dislocated knee caps are rather common among this group. Other people more at risk of the injury include women, and individuals that are obese or have knock-knees. During this injury, one’s leg becomes forcefully straightened and experiences some trauma. The resulting knee pain can be very severe, making it quite difficult to stretch your leg.
Knee dislocation is among the most serious injuries one can go through. It’s an injury that causes a separation between the upper limb and the lower one, threatening total disability. Not only are the person’s ligaments torn, but their veins and arteries become affected too. As you can imagine, the pain that follows is absolute, with the knee itself becoming visibly deformed.
Knee Ligament Injuries
A person’s knee ligaments are impressively strong, but they can still be injured through spraining and rupturing. This rupturing can either be partial or total, depending on how severe the injury was. If the ligaments have just been sprained, which is more common than rupturing, then they should heal easily. If, on the other hand, you have ruptured your knee ligaments, then you need to see a doctor right away.
Some of the commonest knee injuries include:
- Medial collateral ligament (MCL) injury – this type of injury takes place as a result of tearing or spraining the MCL, which is basically a band of tissue located in your knee. The tissue connects your thigh bone with the bone found on your lower to prevent your knee from bending forwards.
- Lateral collateral ligament (LCL) injury – less common than the MCL injury, the LCL injury occurs inside the knee. The lateral collateral ligament connects the thigh bone to the fibular bone, offering stability to the knee’s outer part.
- Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury –is typically caused by landing on one’s leg after falling, causing the knee to be twisted awkwardly in the reverse direction.
- Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) injury – this injury is less common than the ACL injury. It usually takes place after a car collision where a person injures their knees after they hit the seat in front or the vehicle’s dashboard.
Symptoms of knee ligament injuries:
- Searing pain
- Swelling on the injured part
- Movement problems
- Popping sounds on the knee
Western Medical Treatments for knee pain
Knee pain must never be ignored. When it happens, you need to see a doctor who will then test and evaluate the knee to diagnose the root cause of the pain. Once they’ve established the cause and the condition of the injury, they’ll usually advise that you undergo one of the following treatments:
- Tendon rupture- treatment for this type of injury is surgery so as to repair the affected tendons.
- Meniscal injuries –the commonest treatment for injury to the meniscus is arthroscopic surgical repair.
- For kneecap dislocation– although it may sound menacing, kneecap dislocation isn’t considered that serious. Your doctor will usually pop the dislocated knee back to its position, although they may also X-ray the knee to find out whether you suffered a fracture. To aid the recovery of the surrounding parts of the knee, you may require splinting.
- Knee dislocation– this is the injury you need to worry about as it is limb threatening. Typically, you’ll need to stay in the hospital a while as the doctor does tests and evaluation to determine the extent of the damage. After a period of treatment, your knee should be back to normal, hoping everything goes well.
- For knee ligament injuries- where the injury is serious, your physician will typically recommend surgery to repair your torn ligaments. With some pain relieving tablets, you should get back to normal after a while.
Acupuncture for Knee Pain
Acupuncture is a widely renowned Chinese treatment technique that is over 3,000 years old. This technique has been proven, both in science and experience, to be very effective in relieving a wide variety of pain, knee pain included. The treatment is especially sought by people suffering from lower back and neck pain too. Acupuncture quickly and effectively eases inflammation, pain and spasms, while at the same time boosting circulation in the affected area.
One of the research reports published in the popular Archives of Internal Medicine attests to the effectiveness of acupuncture as a treatment for pain. These claims have also been backed by Dr. Chen, a leading anesthesiologist and practitioner of acupuncture at Massachusetts General Hospital. In fact, Dr. Chen says that acupuncture is more effective in the treatment of pain as compared to medication.
At our facility here in Palm Beach Gardens Florida, our experienced physicians take you through a comprehensive initial evaluation to accurately diagnose the cause of your pain. We then come up with a plan to help relieve your pain within the shortest time possible. Why not contact us for a free consultation today? We are confident that we can help!