Pain in and around the knee may be a sign of knee calcification. Knee osteoarthritis treatment is a problem that should not be delayed. Anesthesiology and Reanimation Specialist Prof. Dr. Serbulent Gökhan Beyaz gave important information about the subject.
Knee osteoarthritis, also known as knee calcification, is a common and age-related condition characterized by regional cartilage loss in the joint, associated with various degrees of bony prominence formations, involving the entire joint, such as articular cartilage, membrane bordering the joint, and bone changes under the cartilage. It is an associated disease.
Direct radiographs, namely x-ray films, are the most commonly used methods in diagnosing knee osteoarthritis and in planning treatment. However, the x-ray of the structures forming the joint reflects the two-dimensional shadow of the disease, not the real image. With this radiological method, it is difficult to interpret the detailed changes in the joint during the disease process and it is insufficient to show the early stage changes. When necessary, MRI and more detailed evaluation of the structures in the knee are important in the selection of treatment.
Clinical findings in knee osteoarthritis may not always be associated with the severity of pain and X-ray findings. In addition, pain in knee calcification can be caused not only by the joint, but also by other structures around the joint. According to the 2012 data of the Turkish Statistical Institute, 6% of the population has a joint disorder called arthritis. Joint calcifications are also included in this group. The World Health Organization, on the other hand, estimates that up to 60% of women over the age of 18 suffer from joint calcification.
In fact, it is wrong to call this condition just calcification because it is not just a bone tissue condition, but it is customary in this way. Supportive connective tissues around the joint, loss of function of muscles or deterioration of intra-articular ligaments are also causes of knee pain and knee calcification. Aims in the treatment of knee calcification; Reducing pain, preserving the function of the joint and reducing the progression of the disease as a result of daily work can be done more comfortably. When patients need to lose weight, thermal waters at different temperatures such as balneotherapy can be beneficial.
Among the most current treatments, the method of blunting the nerves that cause knee joint pain with radiofrequency treatment is very effective. One of the most important advantages of this method is that it can be used in patients who have not benefited from injection treatments, as well as in patients who have had prosthetic surgery to treat pain. As we have shown in our scientific research published this year, even after arthroscopy operations with very small incisions, post-operative pain can be seen at a rate of 30%, while this rate is much higher after knee prosthesis surgeries. Therefore, the method of blunting the knee joint nerves with radiofrequency is effective in pain that does not go away after prosthesis surgery.
Another current method is related to regenerative medicine. This is actually known as stem cell therapy in the community. This method is not a PRP treatment. It is the method of injecting the stem cells obtained from the fat cells taken from the navel area with various tools and devices into the knee joint. This method, which can be discharged on the same day, is completed in about 30 minutes. After the procedure, our patients should be careful not to use painkillers. I can say that many of our patients, to whom we applied mesenchymal stem cells 5 years ago, continue their lives without pain.
This situation, which leads to severe limitation of the quality of daily life in elderly patients, can be slowed down, loss of function can be corrected, and pain can be reduced. In this process, which extends to surgical knee prosthesis when necessary, it is very important for people not to postpone this health problem after their complaints begin and to consult a specialist physician.