General Knee Aches and Pains

Knee pain can be caused by a wide range of things:

  • Direct trauma
  • Repetitive strain
  • Poor mechanics or problems with the lower back, hip, ankle or foot
  • Osteoarthritis of the hip, which can sometimes present itself purely as knee pain with no other symptoms (please see General Hip Aches and Pains for more details)

How can we help?

People do not automatically think of seeing a chiropractor or osteopath when they have knee pain, as most people assume we 'just do backs'; however, with every patient we examine that is presenting with back pain, we will also assess their hips, knees, ankles and feet, as our focus is not just to treat the pain, but also to find and eliminate the cause to stop the problem from reoccurring.

Symptoms we can treat include:

  • Pain: Acute, sharp or severe pain may be in a tendon, bursa or ligament (often an indication of inflammation)
  • Aches: Most commonly associated with muscular problems including tightness or overuse
  • Restriction: If the joint is locked in position and therefore severely restricted, you need to check for meniscal damage; stiffness or tightness can occur with muscular or ligamentous dysfunction
  • Weakness: This can occur secondary to pain, trauma or nerve damage and needs to be examined to determine the cause
  • Swelling: This will occur secondary to trauma (most commonly) or may be associated with a bursa or baker's cyst

Our practitioners are highly trained and experienced at examining, diagnosing and treating knee problems, whether they are associated with knee pain or not.

You will be involved in any decisions about your care, and your practitioner will give you advice on appropriate pain management strategies.

Your treatment is likely to be a package of care that may include: 

  • Expert advice
  • Self-management
  • Manual therapies (including manipulation, mobilisation and soft tissue work)
  • Dry needling/medical acupuncture
  • Tailored exercise approaches
  • Psychologically informed care

You can also expect to receive advice on the appropriateness of undertaking exercises, being physically active and continuing normal daily activities as far as possible, as well as remaining in work, graded return and fit notes.

Please see the top left-hand corner of this page for a list of other causes of knee pain.

How long will it take until I feel better?

This is very much down to the individual. As a rough guide, young, fit and healthy patients with more recent problems will probably take fewer adjustments; however, older, less fit or indeed the less healthy individual will probably take a few more.

Different conditions take different lengths of time to heal as well (for example, a facet joint sprain will heal a lot more quickly than a disc herniation).

At your Report of Findings (RoF) appointment, your practitioner will give you an informed estimate as to how long you can expect the course of care to take. They will keep you up to date with your prognosis throughout your care, and you will undergo a review appointment every six sessions; however, following your practitioner's advice is strongly recommended to help you to get better more quickly.

Also, 'better' means different things to different people. Some people come to see us merely to get out of pain, whereas the majority of people come to see us to get well and stay well. Some people with chronic conditions recognise the fact that they may always have some discomfort, but derive a huge amount of benefit from regular adjustments - keeping them functioning at their very best.

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