Hi all, today I want to talk to you about osteoarthritis of the knee.
Osteoarthritis is something many people live with. The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners have recently released their recommendations for the management of knee and hip osteoarthritis. A panel of experts look at a range of treatment approaches and came up with the best treatment interventions that had good evidence behind them. I thought them worth sharing with you.
The recommendations included physical and psychological interventions as well as medication. I will briefly discuss the physical interventions that were recommended for knee osteoarthritis and examine the hip in next week’s blog.
Essentially, of all the physical interventions, land-based exercise for all people with knee osteoarthritis (OA) was strongly recommended regardless of their age, severity of the OA, functional status and pain levels. Also, exercise has been found to be beneficial for health generally. People with knee OA should seek advice from a clinician to prescribe an individualized progressive exercise program, and this advice should consider the persons capacity and availability to exercise, their preferences and other medical issues they may have.
Activities including walking and Tai Chi were highly recommended. Stationary cycling, yoga, hydrotherapy, heat and massage have also been found to be appropriate. The other strong recommendation was weight management achieved through dietary modification and exercises.
So, in summary if you have osteoarthritis of the knee, try the following:
1. Land – based exercises to improve strength of the muscles supporting the knee. This may be in a class setting or done individually.
2. Try walking regularly, cycling, hydrotherapy, Yoga or Tai Chi
3. Try a short course of massage
4. Use a heat pack or hot water bottle to help relieve the pain
5. If you are carrying too much weight try dietary modifications to reduce your weight
Hope this helps, and have a great week, Deb