Knee Osteoarthritis Treatment in Nutley, NJ
What Is Knee Osteoarthritis?
Knee Osteoarthritis is also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD) or simply put “wear & tear” of the knee joints. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis affecting approximately 27 million people in the United States and has an approximate age onset of about 65 years of age but, can begin in your 20’s or 30’s due to acquired injuries, congenital defects, or in cases of long term obesity
Normal Knee vs. Osteoarthritic Knee
How Does A Normal Knee Become Osteoarthritic?
In a normal healthy knee the articular cartilage is smooth and slippery which allows the knee joint to glide without friction when bending and straightening of the knee. The articular cartilage tissue covers, cushions, and protects the ends of the bones of the femur and tibia which make up the knee joint. The knee joint also has an invisible sac, known as a bursa, which is filled with synovial fluid, a natural lubricant found in every joint of the body, which promotes the gliding of the knee joint. Over time the synovial fluid dries up and the articular cartilage begins to rub on each other eventually grinding away at the surfaces. The slow grinding of cartilage leads to pain and inflammation of the knee joint and begins to restrict the range of motion of the knee affecting every day activities like walking and climbing stairs. Many people also become sedentary leading to obesity and depression complicating the situation even more.
Visco-Supplementation – The Secret Sauce…
Today research sheds light on visco-supplementation injections made from the extraction and purification of hyaluronic acid of rooster combs used to lubricate knee joints and serving as a means of decreasing pain and inflammation while preventing knee replacement surgery as best as possible. These FDA approved treatments are safe and effective and have been widely used in the United States for many years now. Most brands of injections are given at a frequency of 1 x per week for a total of 3 to 5 weeks depending on the product being used. According to research the pain relief from the injections can last up to 6 months at which point they may be repeated to attempt to get another 6 months relief. In our office, we have patients staying away from knee replacement surgery for years now thanks to these injections.
Not All Knee Injections Are Created Equal
The Nutley knee doctors at Options Rehab use a state of the art piece of medical equipment called a video-fluoroscopy This revolutionary technology allows our doctors to see exactly where the lubricating material needs to be placed for maximum results. The video guidance also allows for the injections to be quick and painless because the doctors can see exactly where they are going and don’t have to poke around guessing whether or not they are within the joint. Studies have shown that when injecting these lubricants into the knees blindly without the use of video guidance it reduces the accuracy to only 71%, with video-fluoroscopy that accuracy percentage increases into the high 90%.
Click on video below to see Luis Citarelli, MD demonstrating how easy and precise an injection is done in our office using video-fluoroscopy.
Why Do You Need Physical Therapy?
At Options Rehab we emphasize physical therapy before, during, and after your injection program has finished. Physical therapy should be the first line of defense against developing osteoarthritis of the knees. In fact, most insurance companies now have it written into their policy for coverage that a three-month course of conservative treatment which includes physical therapy, a trial of cortisone, and over the counter NSAID’s, are to be utilized before any viscosupplementation. That’s not a bad thing… Look we get it… we are all busy and have things to do but when it comes to your health you need to prioritize and pay attention to your body so you don’t have to suffer the consequences of possible surgery later.
Physical therapy during viscosupplementation is equivocally important because just simply injecting and lubricating the knee is not addressing the cause but just the symptom. Knees become bad because of loss of function and range of motion. Specifically prescribed exercises that address your knees’ deficits are extremely important in not only the rehabilitation of your knees but also in achieving longevity and avoiding knee replacement at all costs.
Physical therapy after you’ve completed the viscosupplementation program is also very important in the maintenance of your knees. At Options Rehab our therapists will teach you very specific exercises to continue at home while in the office we will be aiming in progressing you up the ladder of function. Some patients say they don’t need physical therapy but we beg to differ, because most patients go to the gym and unfortunately do more harm than good. Please understand that a licensed professional like a chiropractor or physical therapist have doctorate level degrees in rehabilitation. This means we live and breathe this stuff every day and we understand the importance of something as easy as getting in and out of a chair or being able to stand up without assistance from a cane or a walker. Our main focus is always on improving the quality of your life so you are able to do the things you enjoy doing well into your golden years.
Why Is Knee Bracing Important For Osteoarthritis?
The doctors and therapists at Options Rehab understand the importance of good knee support. Years of experience treating countless patients with osteoarthritis we have seen a huge improvement with patients who use support braces for their knees. We specifically use a highly patient compliant universal range of motion knee brace built for optimal support and patient comfort. This brace uses a breathable advanced fabric to make it extremely lightweight and breathable. Our patients are advised to use them in and out of the treatment area so they can become comfortable wearing them while building their confidence in doing more difficult exercise while wearing the braces. The straps on the brace also have a rubber tab at each end making it easier for our patients to put the brace on and take the brace off. These braces are not only extremely supportive but they also have a cool design that patients won’t mind wearing.
Is This Knee Program Covered By Insurance?
The first question most patients ask us: “Is this treatment program covered by insurance?”.
The short answer is Yes, most insurances, including Medicare, cover the entire program of viscosupplementation, physical therapy, and even the knee braces.
We offer a complimentary insurance benefits check for all our patients when they come into our office so they are aware of what is covered and what is not.
The Viscosupplementation program is covered because it is an FDA approved treatment program for knee pain due to osteoarthritis. The truth is that insurance companies know it works so well at reducing pain and many times eliminating the need for knee replacement surgery that they allow the program to be done twice per year. That’s correct… every six months if you complete the program and it was successful in alleviating knee pain from osteoarthritis for six months or more then you qualify to repeat the program in six months time again.
Is Our Knee Program Right For You?
If you are unsure if our knee program is right for you we welcome you to come in for a FREE SCREENING with one of our doctors and we’ll also perform a Complimentary Insurance Benefits Check while you are in with the doctor. You have nothing to lose and no strings attached. Just call us at 973-542-2022 or email us at info@Optionsrehab.com and we’ll take care of the rest.
Please don’t forget to mention to ask when you call us for a FREE SCREENING & Complimentary Insurance Benefits Check.