Knee Pain

Most people have knee pain because of injuries, overuse, or as a side-effect of the aging process. In order to heal and/or manage this pain, acupuncturists attempt to restore the proper flow of Qi and Blood. Every part of your body must be reached by the flow of Qi and Blood through the meridians and vessels in order to function properly. One of the most basic and famous maxims in Chinese medicine is this: “Where there is flow, there is no pain. Where there is no flow, there is pain.” That applies to emotions, as well. Many times, people have physical pain just because of emotions or thoughts that their body is not processing.

Acupuncture for Knee Pain

Studies have shown that acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine are great for all kinds of chronic or acute pain. If you have knee pain, stop thinking about it and give it a shot. With regular acupuncture for knee pain, you may be able to avoid costly, potentially dangerous surgeries, as well as medications with negative side-effects. However, if you cannot avoid getting surgery, consider Traditional Chinese Medicine to speed up and fine-tune your healing process to get the most out of your procedure.

What often winds up happening is that a weakness in one of the meridians leaves a person vulnerable to having an injury heal incorrectly or incompletely. Getting regular acupuncture for knee pain (or really any kind of pain) improves nerve communication in that area, increases blood flow, reduces inflammation, and can even re-write areas of the brain associated with that area. This breaks the chronic pain cycle, turns off the inflammatory response, and allows things to return to a normal state of flow.

In addition to getting acupuncture for knee pain, we also use lots of auxiliary treatment modalities to amplify and extend the effectiveness of treatments, such as cupping, gua sha, moxibustion, herbal remedies, tui na massage, and meditation. We also advise all of our patients on various other lifestyle modifications they can employ to maximize their results.

Physical Therapy for Knee Pain

There are many causes of knee pain, and pain can often be associated with issues related to other body parts entirely, such as the hip or low back. Localized tendonitis is common, as is the softening of the cartilage. Many maturing adults suffer from Sinding-Larsen-Johansson or Osgood-Schlatter. Young athletes, especially those participating in jumping sports, can put a significant load on the kneecap and attached tendons and ligaments. Overuse and poor hip strength often lead to pain, tenderness, and swelling. Knee pain can be managed with taping and bracing, with stabilization and strengthening exercises, and a personalized program from a physical therapist. 

Tears in the Knee

There are four ligament tears that can occur in the knee, an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear, a posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) tear, a medial collateral ligament (MCL) tear, and a lateral collateral ligament (LCL) tear. Some tears are more common than others, and often impact athletes. Signs and symptoms may include pain, swelling, a “pop” sensation, or sudden instability. Physical therapy can help prevent and treat ligament tears with progressive strengthening and functional exercise. Meniscal Tears can also occur. The menisci (plural for meniscus) are cartilage pads that cushion the compressive loads in the knee. One or both of these pads can be torn, often when the lower leg is forcefully bent and twisted. Signs and symptoms include joint line pain, locking, and swelling of the knee. 

Iliotibial Band Friction Syndrome (ITBS)

The iliotibial band (IT band) is a long, flat, and strong tendinous structure that spans from the buttocks and hip, runs down the outside of the thigh, and inserts into the shin bone, just below the knee joint. The IT band can become inflamed and irritated, causing patients pain. Symptoms are typically the result of repetitive bending and straightening of the knee and are common in long-distance runners or cyclists. Physical therapists can evaluate walking and running patterns (gait), bike fit, body mechanics, flexibility, and strength. With proper education, stretching, and strengthening, patients can be relieved of this painful syndrome. 

Osteoarthritis of the Knee

Osteoarthritis of the knee occurs when the cartilage coverings on the femur and tibia wear out. When the cartilage flattens, bone spurs form, and the joint becomes inflamed. Range of motion can be lost, and patients experience weakness and pain. It is often difficult to walk, climb stairs, and get in and out of chairs. Physical therapy can help to recover range of motion, strengthen the knee, improve walking skills, and manage pain. 

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