Osteoarthritis (Arthritis) of the Knee & Medical Acupuncture
The two basic forms of Arthritis infecting the knee is the Osteoarthritis (OA) and the Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). However, there are more than 100 different types of conditions that can cause joint changes (uric, psoriatic, microbial and others).Over the last few years, more than 50.000.000 people were diagnosed with some form of Arthritis in the USA.
Osteoarthritis of the Knee: What is it?
Osteoarthritis (Arthritis) of the Knee is the deterioration – damage of the cartilage, a smooth and slippery stratum that decreases the friction between the touching spots of the femoral bones, the tibia and the kneecap.
The knee is a complex joint that allows the leg to bend, extend and slightly tilt sideways. As the cartilage degrades, the layers underneath it show hardening and a new bone as well as a new cartilage develop at the edges of the joint (osteophytes). Simultaneously, calcium deposition can be detected in the joints.
The friction between the bones, which are not anymore protected by the cartilage, causes discomfort for the patient while moving (pain) – for instance, when ascending stairs or even while walking mildly. In chronic conditions, it leads to swelling (the joint may be drooping, due to inflammation in the tissues surrounding it) as well as to a limitation of movement.
Osteoarthritis of the Knee: What are the factors of its occurrence?
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of Arthritis which due to the increase of life expectancy is very prevalent. It usually infects people over 45 years old.
Other factors related to the appearance of Osteoarthritis are:
- The sex (women over 55 years old are more vulnerable).
- The weight (increased weight contributes to the joints being traumatized and the inflammation deteriorating).
- The heredity.
- Deficiencies in vitamins and minerals: vitamins (D3, K2, C), minerals (magnesium, zinc, chromium), Omega-3 fats, amino acids (lysine, proline, glycine, glutamine), probiotics and antioxidants.
- Repeated injuries that stress the joint either because of work (e.g. dancers) or because of sport activities.
- Other coexisting forms of Arthritis (e.g. Rheumatoid Arthritis) or several metabolic disorders (such as Diabetes and the resistance to the insulin that increase the risk of developing Osteoporosis.)
Osteoarthritis of the Knee: Symptoms
Osteoarthritis of the Knee appears along with symptoms such as:
- Accumulation of fluid in the joint (swelling)
- Incapability of extending or bending the knee
- Increased pain when weather conditions change, mainly when there is humidity.
Osteoarthritis of the Knee: Its Treatment with Medical Acupuncture
When treating Osteoarthritis of the Knee with Acupuncture and once it is practiced by specialized Doctor -Acupuncturists, it can reduce the pain and also improve the mobility of the joint of the knee.
Acupuncture is an ancient treating method with accumulated experience being practiced for more than 2.500 years in a great number of people. It is a completely safe, bloodless and painless method. It can either coexist with other treatments that the patient possibly follows (pharmaceutical, herbal, homeopathic, physiotherapeutic) or act autonomously. It may have excellent results where conventional treatments have no success.
As it has already been demonstrated by studies in prestigious international universities (with specialized blood tests and MRI examinations), Acupuncture promotes self-treatment through complex mechanisms. This can be achieved by choosing the appropriate combination of fine needles which result in the production of endorphins (endogenous morphines with analgesic action), muscle relaxants, sedatives and other substances.
Depending on the nature of the Knee Arthritis problem (acute or chronic), 6-8 and up to 12-15 Acupuncture treatments are needed (in chronic cases).
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