A new way of managing / treating knee pain
If you’ve started to experience knee pain you’re not alone, more that 17.6% of the Australian adult population aged over 45 experience knee pain at least on a weekly basis. It is possible that for some people such pain may be the early stages of osteoarthritis.
The symptoms associated with knee pain:
- Occasional joint pain: you might experience this as mild, intermittent or just uncomfortable pain and may signify the breakdown of the flexible joint tissue known as the cartilage. At this stage the pain usually reduces over time when the knee is rested or the leg elevated.
- Increasingly persistent pain: as the joint continues to deteriorate knee pain may persist, become painful at night and even cause insomnia or other sleep difficulties.
- Stiffness and difficulty maintaining a normal full range of motion and flexibility in the knee: at this stage of cartilage deterioration knee pain really starts to interfere with quality of life and can limit participation in normal daily activities.
So, what are the options for daily relief of knee pain?
If the symptoms I’ve written about sound a bit like your experience, what are your options for managing your knee pain or osteoarthritis?
It may sound contradictory to recommend that you keep moving the knee, especially when standing, walking and bending your knee causes pain and swelling. It might be difficult at first but over time, continuing to be active will reduce the pain, improve joint mobility and may even help maintain the cartilage of the knee. We sometimes forget that the human body is made to move and be active rather than being sedentary. Exercise will improve and strengthen the muscles around the knee which will slow the progression of the osteoporosis.
What about pain relief? Currently most sufferers of knee pain and osteoarthritis use over the counter paracetamol (panadol) to help manage the pain on an ‘as needed’ basis. While using paracetamol is a reasonable medium term strategy, regular long term use is generally not recommended as even mild analgesics can have negative effects when used over a long period.
Alternatives to commonly uses analgesics
With our research group, I am currently investigating and trialling a new analgesic (pain relief) medication that works directly on the nervous system to reduce pain and improve sleep at the same time.
This medication is being tested as an alternative to the paracetamol, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen, as it is safer to use long term that currently available analgesics.
Trialling the new medication
If you suffer from knee pain or have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis would like to see if this new medication works for you and alleviates your symptoms you can trial the medication free.
Over the next 8 weeks we are running a fully funded clinical trial evaluating the potential of this new pain relief medication for the management of mild to moderate knee pain in men and women aged between 40 and 75. If you think this may be for you and you’re interested in taking part, or just want to know a little more about it, simply fill in the form below and I’ll be in touch to answer any questions you have and if you fit the criteria and want to test the medication, enrol you in the trial.
Dr Beth Steels
PS: if you want to know more about me, click here.
Knee Pain Enquiry Form