Knee Pain? Knee Surgery? Premier Physical Therapy can Help.
The knee is a relatively simple joint, however, it performs a complicated task. The knee needs to function properly to provide flexible mobility while bearing considerable weight. While walking down the street, our knees bear three to five times our body weight. When climbing stairs, that force can multiply to seven times our body weight. The compact structures, bone, and cartilage, of the knee, bear the weight, and the joint is supported by muscles and ligaments.
Knee Pain & Knee Injuries
Knee pain can be caused by disease or injury. The most common disease affecting the knee is osteoarthritis. Knee injuries can occur as the result of a direct blow or sudden movement that strains the knee beyond its normal range of movement. Knee pain caused by an injury is most often associated with knee cartilage tears, such as meniscal tears, or ligament tears, such as anterior cruciate ligament tears.
Knee injuries can occur as the result of a direct blow or sudden movement that strains the knee beyond its normal range of motion, as can happen in sports, recreational activities, a fall, or a motor vehicle accident. Knee pain caused by an injury often is associated with tears in the knee cartilage or ligaments. Knee pain also can be the result of repeated stress, as often occurs with the kneecap, also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome. Very rarely, with extreme trauma, a bone may break at the knee.
How Can a Premier Physical Therapist Help Before & After Knee Surgery?
Your Omaha physical therapist at Premier Physical Therapy in consultation with your surgeon will be able to tell you how much activity you can do depending on the type of knee surgery you undergo. Your therapist and surgeon also might have you participate in physical therapy prior to surgery to increase your strength and motion. This can sometimes help with recovery after surgery.
Following surgery, your physical therapist will design a personalized rehabilitation program for you and help you gain the strength, movement, and endurance you need to return to performing the daily activities you did before.
To help diagnose your condition, your physical therapist may ask you questions like:
- Where exactly on your knee is the pain?
- Did you twist your knee?
- Did you feel a “tearing” sensation at the time of injury?
- Do you notice swelling?
- Have you ever felt like your knee joint is “catching,” “locking,” or will give way?
- Do you have difficulty walking up and down stairs?
- Do you have difficulty sitting with your knee bent for long periods, as on an airplane or at the movies?
- Does your pain increase when you straighten or bend your knee?
- Does your knee hurt if you have to twist or turn quickly?
The physical therapist will perform tests to find out whether you have:
The physical therapist also is concerned about how well you are able to use your injured knee in daily life. To assess this, the therapist may use such tests as a single-limb hop test, a 6-minute walk test, or a timed up-and-go test.
- Tenderness at the knee joint
- Limited motion in your knee
- Weakness in the muscles around your knee
- Difficulty putting weight on your knee when standing or walking
- Pain or discomfort with bending or straightening your knee
Knee Pain: Research has shown hip strengthening will improve your leg alignment and mechanics with daily and recreational activities which can help to alleviate your knee pain. The link provides an article from The Journal of Sport and Orthopaedic Physical Therapy explaining this.