What Are the Symptoms of Arthritis in the Knee?

Knee arthritis, particularly osteoarthritis, is among the most common and debilitating conditions among adults over 50. Osteoarthritis is characterized by the age-related degeneration of cartilage that cushions the body’s joints and facilitates smooth, fluid movement.

The symptoms of knee arthritis can vary, but often include:

  • Knee pain and stiffness that tends to be worse in the morning and after long periods of inactivity
  • Reduced range of motion
  • Swelling and tenderness around the knee
  • A grating sensation caused by bone-on-bone contact in the knee joint

Osteoarthritis in any joint can be frustrating to deal with and negatively impact your quality of life, but it can be especially debilitating when it affects one or both knees. The knee is the largest and arguably most complex joint in the body, and it facilitates basic movements like walking, standing up, and sitting down. If you begin to notice any of the above symptoms, it’s important to promptly speak with an orthopedic physician about your options.

How is knee arthritis treated?

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that cannot be reversed. However, there are plenty of steps you can take to slow the progression of the disease, help preserve joint health, and effectively manage your symptoms. With your physician’s guidance, try:

  • Engaging in low impact exercise. Staying active while dealing with knee pain may seem counterintuitive, but low-impact exercises like swimming and walking in comfortable shoes can help strengthen the muscles that support the knee and promote overall joint health.
  • Losing excess weight. Being overweight places undue strain on your joints. Consider speaking with your doctor about safe ways to lose weight.
  • Taking medication. There are several prescription and over-the-counter medications available that can help reduce pain from arthritis.
  • Using hot/cold therapy. Placing an ice pack on your knee can numb pain and reduce inflammation, while using a heating pad or taking a warm bath can relax tensed muscles and soothe achy joints.

Our approach to knee arthritis treatment

Tampa Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Group – a division of Florida Medical Clinic and the longest-running orthopedic practice in the Tampa area – is proud to provide a full spectrum of knee arthritis treatment to our patients. Our clinic is led by board-certified orthopedic sports medicine surgeon Dr. Daniel Murphy and sports medicine physician Dr. Arnold Ramirez, two renowned specialists who leverage the latest advancements in musculoskeletal care to help achieve the best possible outcomes.

Some of our leading-edge arthritis treatment options include knee gel injections (viscosupplementation), PRP therapy, custom bracing, and various minimally invasive procedures. Dr. Murphy also specializes in total knee replacement – a viable treatment option for some patients with severe arthritis that does not respond to conservative approaches.

Contact Tampa Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Group today to learn more about our approach to knee arthritis and how we can help you get back on the move. You can reserve an appointment over the phone or online at your convenience. Our center in South Tampa accepts most major health insurance plans.