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What Kind Of Doctor Do I See For Knee Pain

Pressing On The Knee Doesnt Hurt

What type of doctor should I see for my knee injury?

If youre unable to increase your pain level by touching or pushing on your knee, the source of the pain may actually be caused by problems elsewhere in the body. For example, sciatica a condition in which a disc in the lower back presses on a nerve can cause pain down the leg and through the knee. Hip injuries may also cause knee pain. So if you push around in your knee and it doesnt hurt, consult a doctor to figure out whats really going on.

What Kind Of Doctor Do I Need

Some health insurance plans allow you to refer yourself to a doctorthat is, if you know what is wrong, you can go see a medical specialist without having to be referred by your regular doctor. In other plans, you have to be referred to a specialist by your primary care physician . If you are trying to figure out what kind of doctor you need for your health problem or symptoms youre having, then this list will help you out. It tells you what kind of doctor treats what. Then you can find the name of a specialist by calling your local hospital, asking friends or family if they know a good doctor, or asking your primary care doctor to recommend someone.

What Type Of Doctor Do You See For Knee Pain

Often knee pain can be evaluated and treated by your primary care doctor. If the knee pain requires surgery or the cause of the pain needs further evaluation, an orthopedic surgeon will usually be consulted. With arthritis, gout, or inflammatory joint problems a rheumatologist may be consulted.

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When It’s Time To See A Knee Doctor

Being aware of certain symptoms is important because if a knee issue can be diagnosed and treated early on, it will help to avoid further knee damage and pain in the future. Sharing this information with your doctor allows them to provide you with the best knee care. If any of the following symptoms sound familiar, you may have damaged your knee joint or the surrounding tissues:

  • Knee is unable to support your weight and buckles when you attempt to use it
  • Knee locks up
  • Knee looks misshapen or deformed
  • Knee pain or swelling that gets worse after an injury
  • Popping sound at the time of the knee injury
  • Range of motion decreases over time
  • Tingling or numbness in the lower leg
  • Unable to bend or straighten the knee without pain

These symptoms often correspond to a more serious knee condition, such as:

  • Anterior cruciate ligament tears
  • Arthritis
  • Posterior cruciate ligament trauma
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

Our orthopedic doctors understand that knee pain can have a major effect on your lifestyle and keep you from performing routine, everyday activities. To schedule an appointment with one of our knee doctors, please call 788-9220 or request an appointment online.

Our knee specialists also understand that some injuries occurs when least expected, which is why we are proud to offer our Orthopedic Urgent Care to treat patients who are suffering from acute orthopedic injuries and conditions. Walk-ins are welcome, and no appointment is necessary.

Your Primary Care Doctor Has Recommended You See A Spine Specialist

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If youre like most people, when you first develop a medical concern, you make an appointment with your primary care doctor. And this is a good first step. Your primary care physician can perform a physical exam, order imaging studies, and diagnose and treat sciatica. But if your case is more complex, you may be referred to a spine surgeon. Keep in mind, seeing a surgeon doesnt mean you will definitely require surgery. Its just the next step in the process of finding the best treatment plan for you.

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Can You Prevent Knee Pain

There can be many reasons for knee pain. Therefore, there are different strategies to prevent the pain depending on the underlying cause. Running on soft surfaces or decreasing the amount of running can help if the pain is due to overuse. Avoiding any direct injuries to the knee including wearing a seatbelt can prevent traumatic injuries. Weight loss can be helpful for many different forms of knee pain.

What Treatments Does A Knee Specialist Recommend

Most causes of anterior knee pain are due to biomechanical factors that require a comprehensive rehab program incorporating other disciplines including physiotherapy, podiatry, and strength and conditioning.

Sometimes, anterior knee pain may be due to kneecap arthritis or fat pad impingement. Generally, both of these conditions need specialised treatment.

In addition, Dr Masci is a specialist in the management of a common knee complaint called patellar tendinopathy or jumpers knee. Patellar tendinopathy occurs in younger individuals who participate in jumping or change of direction sports including football, rugby, and athletics. Managing patellar tendinopathy or jumpers knee is challenging and requires a comprehensive rehab program such as heavy loading at the gym and extras to exercise including shockwave therapy, GTN patches or an ultrasound-guided injection. Dr Masci has published a paper on stem cell and PRP injections in patellar tendinopathy. Often, an MSK ultrasound is useful to confirm the diagnosis of patellar tendinopathy or jumpers knee.

Another common knee complaint is arthritis of the knee joint most cases of knee arthritis do not need surgery and improve with exercise therapy combined with other treatments including medication and/or injections. Dr Masci has expertise in the non-surgical treatment of arthritis of the knee such as PRP injections. This recent blog discusses evidence for PRP injections in knee osteoarthritis.

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What Is A Knee Specialist Called

First and foremost, you need to know what type of doctor to see for you knee pain. If you were to go to your general practitioner about your knee pain, he or she would most likely refer you to an orthopedic doctor.

The University of Utah explains in general terms that, Orthopedic doctors are doctors who focus on caring for your bones, joints, ligament, nerves, and tendons . As such, a knee pain specialist is called an orthopedic knee specialist.

Keep in mind that many orthopedic doctors specialize in just one or two parts of the musculoskeletal system, so it is important to verify with any new doctor that he or she specializes in knees before making an appointment.

Knee Pain Treatment At Home

The ultimate guide to knee pain | Types, causes, home remedies, when to see a doctor

If you develop knee pain that was not caused by a , and there is no visible deformity of the knee joint, you can try treating it at home. To care for your knee pain at home:

  • Apply ice to the top of the knee for 15 minutes at a time, alternating with 15 minutes of no ice. Be sure to place a towel or other barrier between your skin and the ice pack to avoid injuring your skin.

  • Elevate the knee on cushions to reduce any minor swelling. You also can sleep with a pillow under your knees to see if it helps the pain.

  • Rest the knee by avoiding any activities that cause pain including bearing weight. If you think the pain is from repetitive activity, try alternating your activities, such as swimming for a few weeks instead of running.

  • Take an over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium .

  • Wear a compression sleeve for a few days to provide support to the knee joint.

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What Does A Rheumatologist Do

Rheumatology studies the causes, impact, and treatments of inflammatory autoimmune disorders on the human body. In an autoimmune disorder, a patients own immune system malfunctions and turns its attack on his own healthy body tissue, rather than on invading or external disease agents.

Rheumatologists can be internists or pediatricians who have additional training and qualifications. They have the experience to diagnose and treat many of the over 100 systemic forms of adult, juvenile, and temporal arthritis. They treat mechanical joint, bone, muscle, and soft and connective tissue diseases.

Often referred to as arthritis doctors, rheumatologists treat many other diseases too.

Do Orthopedic Surgeons Work On Knees

Orthopedic doctors focus on joints, muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons, and how they interact across the body. Orthopedic doctors choose from a wide array of specialties like Joints and often are the ones who treat injured knees and hips caused by arthritis or another joint limiting condition. Two of our care providers, Dr. Nauman Akhtar and Dr. Matthew Gavin, specialize in joint surgery.

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Knee Pain: Should You See A Doctor Or Just Wait It Out

by HealthStar Clinic | Mar 21, 2016 | Blog, Joint Pain, Knee Pain |

Four out of every five knee pain cases resolve by themselves. But sometimes its important to see a doctor. Lets look at why knee pain is so common and four aspects of your symptoms that mean you should see a doctor.

Most knee pain goes away

Everyone has aches and pains that they occasionally experience. Sometimes they arent cause for alarm and in fact, thats true in the vast majority of cases. Eighty percent of the knee problems people have will resolve by themselves within a period of time, explains Robert Gotlin, DO, of Beth Israel Medical Center. When certain symptoms are present, though, it is important to go to the doctor.

Lets look at why knee injury statistics are so high and four times your knee pain symptoms require a doctor.

Why knee pain is so common

Knee pain is incredibly common among American adults. In fact, it is the second most diagnosed pain condition , according to data from the CDC.

The reason the knees are so frequently injured is that, in the general course of life, they are made subject to a huge amount of force: multiple times your full weight. When you walk down the sidewalk or through a room, the amount of pressure on your knees is 1.5 times your weight, according to Harvard Medical School. When you go up or down stairs, they experience 2-3 times your weight when you squat, they are sustaining 4-5 times your weight.

#1 Difficulty walking

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Placental Tissue Matrix Injections

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Placental tissue matrices are derived from the placenta, an organ that develops during pregnancy to provide oxygen and nutrients to a developing fetus. The placenta sends nutrients to the growing baby via the umbilical cord and it is delivered from the body during childbirth, along with the baby.

  • The placental tissue is obtained from a healthy mother who had a normal labor and delivery without complications.
  • Once harvested, the placental tissue is cleansed and preserved.
  • The placental cells contain a large amount of growth factors that promote healing.

Similar to PRP injections, injections of placental tissue matrix have been shown to help heal damaged cartilage cells and delay changes to the cartilage in osteoarthritis.

You may experience decreased pain and improved use of your knee within two to six weeks after receiving prolotherapy injections, with effects lasting up to one year.

Neither injections of PRP or PTM are recommended for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis by the American College of Rheumatology and Arthritis Foundation guidelines because there is limited evidence demonstrating overall effectiveness and there is a lack of standardization of treatment protocols.

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What Is The Outlook For People With Neuropathic Pain

Neuropathic pain is difficult to treat completely but is usually not life-threatening. Youll get the best results from combining rehabilitation with support for your emotional, social and mental wellbeing. You will be able to manage your pain to a level that improves your quality of life with the help of a pain specialist in using some or most of the methods mentioned above.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/07/2020.

References

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Schedule An Appointment With Your Doctor

Pain Treatment Specialists has some of the best knee doctors in the country. Our knee pain doctors Dr. George Hanna, Dr. Namrata Khimani, and Dr. Michael Nguyen are board-certified interventional pain specialists who have graduated from Ivy League universities. They diagnose the root cause of your knee pain using X-Rays, CT Scans, and MRIs and then they treat it using the latest minimally invasive knee pain treatments. For more information, please schedule an appointment with your doctor today.

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Rheumatologists: For Knee Pain With Systemic Symptoms

A rheumatologist is an internist or pediatrician with further training in joint pain. But, they often focus on treating systemic autoimmune diseases.

These are medical conditions where your immune system attacks your own body. These cause joint pain and swelling. But, they also affect other organs, like the skin, eyes, or liver.

Also, rheumatologists dont perform surgery. Their treatments focus on medications and other strategies.

Swelling That’s Worsening After 48 Hours

What type of doctor should I see for my knee injury?

The first thing that can happen after an acute injury is swelling around the site of the injury.

When the knee is injured, it can swell as a result of inflammation or possibly bleeding into the knee joint. This swelling can causes pain and loss of motion, which limits the use of the knee.

Swelling is usually obvious and can be seen, but occasionally you may just feel as though something is swollen even though it looks normal. Often swelling peaks around 24 to 48 hours after an injury. If swelling is still getting worse after 48 hours, you should seek medical attention.

Swelling within a joint can also cause pain and stiffness. It may sometimes lead to a clicking sound as the tendons snap over one another after having been pushed into a new position from the swelling.

If the knee looks deformed or misaligned, don’t delay in seeking treatment. It could be a sign of a fracture or dislocation. These injuries should be evaluated and addressed in a timely fashion to address the source of injury and prevent long term effects.

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You Feel Like Your Knee Will Give Out

Instability in the knee or the feeling that your knee will collapse if you put pressure on it often indicates a ligament injury. Injuries to one or more of the knee ligaments, which are the structures that connect the bones, can lead to the bones not being held tightly enough in position. If they are stretched or torn due to an injury, instability is one of the most obvious warning signs. While it is also possible for people to experience instability symptoms from less severe knee injuries, the only way to tell the difference is by having your knee examined by a doctor.

Will Surgery Treat And Cure Knee Pain

Surgery

Knee operations range from arthroscopic knee surgery to total knee replacement. Arthroscopic knee surgery is a very common surgical procedure that allows the physician look inside your knee through a few small holes and a fiberoptic camera. The surgeon can repair many of the injuries and remove small pieces of loose bones or cartilage. This is a common outpatient procedure.

Partial knee replacement: The surgeon replaces the damaged portions of the knee with plastic and metal parts. Because only part of the knee joint is replaced, this procedure has a shorter recovery then a total knee replacement.

Total knee replacement: In this procedure, the knee is replaced with an artificial joint.

Other therapies

Acupuncture has shown some relieve of knee pain, especially in patients with osteoarthritis. Glucosamine and chondroitin supplements have shown mixed results in research studies.

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Reasons To See A Doctor For Knee Pain

Not everyone will need to see a doctor for knee pain because the truth is, nearly everyones knees will give them some sort of trouble eventually, and most athletes will experience some knee pain from time to time. So when knee pain occurs, it can be difficult to know whether the problem will resolve itself. Here are 6 warning signs that may indicate a more serious knee injury and warrant a trip to the doctor.

Do You Need To See An Orthopedic Physician Or A Rheumatologist

types of knee injections

Patients should use the guidelines below to help determine if they should choose an orthopedic physician or rheumatologist for their arthritis and joint pain.

Patients might need an orthopedic physician if they have:

  • Joint or musculoskeletal pain that began after an injury
  • Gradually progressive hip or knee pain that is worse with weight bearing
  • Joint pain that is severe and interfering with function
  • Moderate or advanced arthritis of the knee or hip
  • Previous unsuccessful treatment for joint pain
  • Been told by their doctor they might need a joint replacement

Patients might need a rheumatologist if they have:

  • Pain involving many joints
  • New joint pain not associated with any injury
  • Joint or musculoskeletal pain associated with morning stiffness, fever, fatigue, rash or chest pain
  • Joint pain that followed a tick bite
  • Joint pain associated with back pain
  • Joint pain and psoriasis
  • Muscular pain with or without any other symptoms
  • New headaches or muscle aches and are over the age of 50
  • Back pain with or without pain in the legs
  • Unexplained, ongoing symptoms such as fever, sweats or weight loss

A patients’ medical needs are important and unique, that is why UMass Memorial Medical Center offers specialty trained physicians that have devoted their education and career to treating specific medical conditions to serve you.

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