When dealing with knee pain, there are so many variables. It is easy to assume
that an injury is just a sore or swollen knee. However, many people take a wait
and see approach with a new knee injury. They assume that the injury will heal
on its own. Many times this is the case, but others the injury is far more severe.
Some people actually tear a ligament such as an ACL. These types of injuries are
far more dangerous to leave unattended by a medical professional. Leaving these
damaged ligaments untreated can lead to early onset arthritis.
The knee has a very important role in our body function. It helps distribute our
body weight when we walk and helps absorb this pressure. Think of shocks on a
car or bicycle, very similar roles.
Inflammation is the most common reason for knee pain and discomfort. When
the tissue becomes inflamed, many of the symptoms are pain, redness, and
Many times it is difficult to know if the knee injury is minor and will heal on its
own or if medical attention is necessary.
Early on it is very important to follow a few recommended steps to help
determine the severity of the injury.
Elevate – propping the knee with pillows or other comfortable objects above the
heart is very important to increase blood flow back to the heart. This allows
blood to leave the knee area and facilitates recirculation.
Ice – this will help reduce the swelling, redness and pain by slowing blood flow
around the injury.
Rest – this is vital to help determine if the injury is minor or more severe. Proper
rest after several days of elevation and ice will let us know if the injury is
improving or if medical attention is the next step.
Medicine – OTC pain relievers and anti-inflammatories are a good start early on
while getting rest, icing the knee and elevating it. However, these should only be
used for a few days and should also be an important determining factor for seeing
a medical professional.
Knee injuries are common and very hard to diagnose the severity without seeing a
medical professional. So give these recommendations several days to help
improve the injury but don’t go too long untreated. This is especially true if you
hear a pop, crack or possibly feel a tear. If this is the case, seek immediate
medical attention with a specialist in knee pain.
If the pain persists, Dr. Aust Interventional Pain is here to help. We have offices in
Slidell, Metairie, and Thibodaux. Call us today, schedule an appointment and start your journey to achieve optimal pain relief!
“We believe most patients can achieve optimal pain management with little to no
chronic oral opioids, and use interventions to reduce or eliminate oral opioid
Dr. Tod Aust