Knowing When You Need Knee Surgery

Knee pain is caused by a number of different things, including injuries and degenerative conditions like arthritis. In most cases, conservative treatments like rest and anti-inflammatory medications help you ease the pain and get back to your normal activities. However, sometimes these treatments just aren’t enough. So how do you know if the next step to relieving your knee pain is surgery?

At University of Toledo Physicians, our team is well-versed in the causes and treatments of knee pain. Our board-certified orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Nabil Ebraheim, helps you to determine the next course of treatment for your knee problems. Whether it’s something more conservative, or you’re ready for surgery, Dr. Ebraheim helps you stop the pain for good.

Causes of knee pain

Knee pain can arise from a number of different conditions, involving not only your muscles and ligaments, but also your knee cap. Injuries are a very common reason for knee pain, especially if you play sports or live an active lifestyle. 

However, there are other reasons you could be suffering from discomfort, especially as you age, such as being genetically predisposed to certain conditions. Some of the underlying problems that could be causing your knee pain include:

Osteoarthritis is the most common cause of chronic knee pain in older adults, so if you can’t remember injuring your knee, that could be the culprit. No matter what the cause, if your knee pain lasts for more than a few days without relief from home care, you should come in to see Dr. Ebraheim. 

Are you a candidate for surgery?

One of the more common reasons you might need knee surgery is an injury, such as an ACL tear or a meniscal tear. Sometimes these injuries can be treated non-surgically, but if your pain doesn’t get better, and if it’s affecting your daily activities, Dr. Ebraheim may recommend surgical intervention.

Another reason you might need knee surgery is due to degenerative arthritis where your pain isn’t resolved with more conservative measures, like over-the-counter medications or injections. In this case, Dr. Ebraheim may discuss either a partial or total knee replacement to help get rid of your pain.

You would likely be a good candidate for surgery if your knee troubles affect your daily activities, such as walking or climbing stairs. If these small tasks seem just about impossible due to the pain and stiffness in your knee, Dr. Ebraheim suggests surgical repair.

Before he discusses surgery though, Dr. Ebraheim goes over your medical history and any imaging studies you’ve had done on your knee. Once he gets a clear picture of where your pain is coming from and how long it's been bothering you, he can determine if surgery is the right avenue of treatment.

What surgeries are available?

The type of surgery Dr. Ebraheim recommends is highly dependent on the cause of your pain. At University of Toledo Physicians, we offer several types of knee surgery solutions, including:

Some of these surgeries are able to be performed arthroscopically, meaning smaller incisions and a faster recovery time. For this type of procedure, Dr. Ebraheim uses a specialized instrument called an arthroscope that has a tiny camera and light attached to it.

Once the arthroscope is in your knee, Dr. Ebraheim is able to visualize the inside of your joint on a large screen in the operating room. He then uses tiny, special instruments to repair the damaged tissue. 

If you need a knee replacement, Dr. Ebraheim may be able to do some, or all, of the replacement arthroscopically. This is dependent on how bad the damage in your knee is, along with factors such as your age and the condition of other knee structures.

If you’re out of options and think that knee surgery could help, call our office at 419-383-3761, or book a consultation online today. You can get more information about knee surgery on our YouTube channel.

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