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How is knee arthritis treated?

Knee arthritis treatment is broken down into two general categories: Nonsurgical treatment and surgery.

Nonsurgical treatment options that can improve arthritis pain include:

  • anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen, naproxen or acetaminophen
  • weight loss
  • aerobic and strengthening exercises
  • walking (gait) assistance
  • cortisone injections and viscosupplementation
  • custom-fit unloader braces, in some cases

Nonsurgical treatment options are temporary solutions that are meant to improve arthritis symptoms. They do not change the disease process. We start with these options and continue with them until they no longer work. Surgery involves joint replacement surgery.  Arthroscopic debridement is no longer indicated for the treatment of arthritis.

Peggy Brill
Physical Therapy Specialist

To treat knee arthritis, you have to manage inflammation, build mobility and target the root of the issue; medication and joint replacement are also options. Watch physical therapist Peggy Brill explain why stretching and increasing mobility is key.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.