Post Traumatic Knee Arthritis Treatment in NYC

What is post traumatic arthritis in the knee?

Arthritis is defined as an inflammation of the joint caused by the wearing of cartilage between the bones. The most common form of knee arthritis is osteoarthritis of the knee, a potentially debilitating joint disease characterized by joint inflammation, pain, and limited range of motion in the knee. Post traumatic knee arthritis is another form of knee arthritis, which causes the same symptoms as osteoarthritis, but is characterized by damage to the knee’s cartilage that develops following a traumatic injury, such as a fracture or tear.

Even though a knee injury may heal and seem to go away, it can cause the joint to move differently and cause more wear on the cartilage and bones. When this happens, the prior injury often resurfaces in the form of post traumatic knee arthritis later in life.

What causes post traumatic knee arthritis?

Post traumatic arthritis of the knee may be caused by events such as:

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Sports injuries
  • Falls
  • Other forms of physical trauma, such as knee surgery

These types of injuries or events can cause significant damage to the knee cartilage as well as knee bone, which changes the way the knee moves. Over time, the cartilage and bone will wear differently and more quickly than before the injury. Other factors that may accelerate the development of post traumatic knee arthritis include:

  • Being overweight
  • Experiencing repeated injuries to the knee
  • Lack of exercise

What are the symptoms of post traumatic knee arthritis?

The following symptoms of post traumatic knee arthritis may warrant a consultation with Dr. Peter K. Sculco, board-certified orthopedic surgeon and knee specialist:

  • Joint tenderness
  • Joint swelling
  • Joint redness
  • Warmth in the knee
  • Knee pain, especially when weight is applied
  • Decreased range of motion
  • A “crunching” sensation when moving the knee joint
  • Weakness or buckling in the knee
  • Increased pain with movement and activity

How is post traumatic knee arthritis diagnosed?

Methods that are commonly used to help diagnose post traumatic knee arthritis include:

Physical Examinations for Post Traumatic Knee Arthritis Diagnosis

Diagnosis begins with your doctor conducting a thorough physical exam, which includes examining the range of motion and function of the knee. In addition, your doctor will analyze your personal and family medical history to help make an accurate diagnosis.

X-Rays for Post Traumatic Knee Arthritis Diagnosis

Often, your doctor will use x-ray imaging to evaluate your knee cartilage and bones and to determine the extent of deterioration and damage.

MRI or CT Scans for Post Traumatic Knee Arthritis Diagnosis

In cases where an x-ray is not detailed enough or your doctor finds it is necessary for further testing, an MRI or CT imaging scan may be used to evaluate the knee more closely.

How is post traumatic knee arthritis treated?

Treatment for post traumatic knee arthritis will vary depending on each patient’s unique needs and the severity of the condition. Treatments can also help prevent further damage to the knee joint over time. Treatment options range from conservative approaches to surgical procedures.

Some of the possible conservative treatment options for knee arthritis may include:

  • Rest
  • Abstaining from activities that cause significant stress on the knees
  • Physical therapy
  • Exercise (low impact)
  • Knee injections
  • Medication prescribed by a doctor
  • Weight loss

If conservative treatments fail to improve knee function and discomfort, you may be a candidate for a surgical treatment. Dr. Peter K. Sculco is dedicated to providing patients with advanced post traumatic arthritis pain treatment options using the highest quality implants and advanced surgical techniques.

Dr. Sculco specializes in the following post traumatic knee arthritis surgery treatment options:

If you’re suffering from knee pain caused by post traumatic knee arthritis, the first step to restoring your mobility and quality of life is scheduling an evaluation with an experienced orthopedic knee specialist. Dr. Peter K. Sculco provides personalized care paired with world-class orthopedic training. Call 212.606.1771 today or fill out the form on this page to request an appointment.

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