Treatment for knee pain

How does physiotherapy treat knee pain?

Your physiotherapist will carry out a thorough assessment to find out what component(s) of your knee is the primary cause of your problem. 


PRICE guidelines (Protection, Rest, ICE) may be utilised initially and this might be in the form of crutches, a knee support or the use of ice therapy.

As your range of movement increases and your pain settles, your physiotherapist will advance your exercises, working on your strength and balance, ensuring that you get back to full fitness.

Tiger Woods is a great example of a professional player who had recurrent surgery on his knee following damage to his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL).

If your pain is not settling or is worsening over a period of 2-3 weeks, and is stopping you from doing your normal activities, then you should seek further advice from your GP/physiotherapist. Equally, if the pain persists but isn’t interfering with your normal activity, but goes on for more than 6 weeks, you should seek advice.

Physiotherapists are specialists in the care of muscle, bone and joint conditions and will be able to offer sensible advice and treatment where needed, and will be tailored to your needs and based on the best evidence we have.

What type of medication should I take for knee pain?

There are a number of different tablets and creams available. Painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen may help and you should use them if you need to. It’s important that you take them regularly and at the recommended dose to help you control the pain and allow you to continue exercising. Don’t wait until your pain is severe before taking painkillers.

You shouldn’t take ibuprofen or aspirin if you’re pregnant or have asthma, indigestion or an ulcer until you’ve spoken to your doctor or pharmacist. Medication can have side-effects so you should read the label carefully and check with your pharmacist if you have any queries.

If over-the-counter medication doesn’t work, your doctor may prescribe stronger painkillers or capsaicin cream, which you can rub directly onto the knee.

Can surgery an option for my knee pain?

Surgery may be recommended if your pain is very severe or you have mobility problems. Your doctor will discuss with you what the surgery may involve.

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