How Some Knee Injuries Increase Your Risk for Osteoarthritis

Knee, Joint Replacement, Surgery, Nerve, Injection, Brace

Your risk for knee injuries increases if you’re physically active, overweight, and as you get older. With certain types of injuries to the knee, you may also be unknowingly increasing your risk for a specific type of arthritis, known as osteoarthritis.

Steven E. Nolan, MD, offers comprehensive care for various knee injuries with a goal to prevent the complications associated with osteoarthritis. By properly caring for a knee injury and preventing future joint damage, you can reduce the likelihood you’ll end up with long-term joint pain and other issues common with osteoarthritis.

Understanding osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a common disease affecting the joints. The condition involves the degeneration of the cartilage, ligaments, and bones of the knee joint, which can lead to chronic inflammation and pain in the joint.

Other common symptoms of osteoarthritis include:

The side effects of osteoarthritis can limit your mobility and reduce the functionality of your knee joint. As a result, you may struggle to stay physically active and find it difficult to move without persistent pain.

Increasing your osteoarthritis risk through injury

When you injure a knee, you may be prematurely breaking down the components of the joint, increasing your risk for developing osteoarthritis.

Common types of knee injuries include:

In many cases, highly active people and those who participate in high-impact sports are at increased risk for injuries that can lead to osteoarthritis.

That’s why it’s important to have Dr. Nolan fully evaluate any knee injury or unexplained knee pain. With prompt treatment, you can often return to your usual activities without increasing your risk for osteoarthritis and other long-term health issues.

Other risk factors for osteoarthritis

In addition to a history of knee injuries and an active lifestyle, other factors can come into play for developing osteoarthritis. For many people, age-related changes in the knee joint can lead to osteoarthritis-related inflammation and pain.

Other factors for osteoarthritis include:

If you work at a job or engage in activities that require repetitive movements, your risk for knee osteoarthritis can also increase.

Tips for preventing knee osteoarthritis

While many factors can determine your risk for osteoarthritis, there are things you can do to keep your knee joints as healthy as possible.

Dr. Nolan can work closely with you to modify physical activity to ensure you stay healthy without damaging your knee. You may need to avoid high-impact activities, like running or certain sports, and stay active with less traumatic activities, like walking and swimming.

You should also focus on maintaining a healthy weight to prevent excess pressure on the knee joints. A healthy diet and proper hydration also help to nourish the cartilage, ligaments, and muscles that support your knee joints.

If you suffer a direct impact or other injury to the knee, an evaluation with Dr. Nolan makes sure the injury is properly treated and allowed to heal. He offers several on-site treatments, including knee arthroscopy, to repair damage in the knee joint and increase your overall functionality.

Delaying treatment for a knee injury can cause lifelong pain and complications, including osteoarthritis, that can take away from a high quality of life.

Find out more about your options for treating knee injuries today by scheduling an appointment with Dr. Nolan online or by phone.

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