Knee arthritis changes how people walk, keep their balance, and enjoy the smooth movement of their lower extremities. Impacting mostly adults, arthritis comes in 100 different varieties. If you exhibit symptoms of knee arthritis, get an examination by a qualified orthopedic surgeon.
Let’s talk about the surprising causes of this common musculoskeletal problem and where you can go for the treatment of knee arthritis in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.
Symptoms of Knee Arthritis
The most frequently-occurring type of knee arthritis is osteoarthritis, or, as it is sometimes known, wear and tear arthritis. OA impacts the cartilage and bone ends in the knee joint. It can develop with age, repetitive motion, and other health and lifestyle factors.
Another common kind is rheumatoid arthritis. This inflammatory condition degrades the synovium, or joint lining, in the knee and other targeted joints. Researchers believe RA is autoimmune, meaning that the body attacks its healthy tissue for somewhat mysterious reasons.
Additionally, many individuals–some of them no older than middle-aged–suffer knee arthritis which results from a sports injury, car accident, or other hard impacts. This kind of arthritis is termed post-traumatic.
Whatever the causes, knee arthritis manifests itself gradually over time. As knee cartilage deteriorates, many symptoms develop, including:
- Stiffness which impacts ordinary movements, such as climbing stairs, walking, squatting, pivoting, and keeping an efficient gait and balance
- Joint warmth, tenderness, and swelling
- Joint locking or buckling (instability)
- Knee deformity
- Crackling, popping sounds when the knee bends
- Growth of bony spurs in the knee joint
The Surprising Causes of Knee Arthritis
Besides age, repetitive motion, autoimmune factors, and trauma, doctors cite other somewhat surprising causes for knee arthritis. Interestingly, researchers believe that these surprising causes and their resultant knee arthritis were absent in American populations–both urban and rural–even a century ago.
However, today’s modern, technology-centered lifestyles likely have given rise to these causes of knee arthritis.
Since the 1950s, American obesity has increased sharply. Not only are body mass indexes (BMIs) significantly higher, but they are on the rise at earlier and earlier ages due to poor diet and lack of physical activity.
Consistently walking in narrow-toed, high-heeled shoes (2-½ inches or higher) places tremendous pressure on the forefoot, knees, and hips. As such, osteoarthritis develops in women who consistently wear high heels during workday routines.
Adding to obesity and high heels are the forces placed on the lower extremities by jobs requiring heaving lifting and long periods of standing on hard surfaces, such as concrete. Walking and running on hard pavement also increase the risk of developing knee arthritis.
Diseases such as diabetes and hemochromatosis (high blood levels of iron) seem to contribute to knee arthritis.
Treatment Options for KneeArthritis in Ft. Lauderdale, FL
At Paul Meli Orthopedics, we see many patients who have symptoms of arthritis in their knees, shoulders, hips, and more. Dr. Meli is a highly experienced board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon who uses both surgical and non-operative treatments to manage arthritis. You and he can work together to determine the right treatment in your case.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Meli, call us today at (954) 324-7711 or fill out our online appointment request form. We look forward to helping you get your knee back!