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Post-traumatic Arthritis

In cases when there is an injury where the bone and cartilage of the knee do not heal properly post-traumatic arthritis may develop. These abnormalities may lead to extra wear on the joint surface and even the development of osteoarthritis.

Causes of post-traumatic arthritis

More times than not post-traumatic arthritis develops after a serious fracture, torn ligament or a tear to the meniscus. Any traumatic injury to the joint, its ligaments or supporting muscles makes the joint unstable. The increased stress on the joint cartilage may lead to arthritis.

Symptoms of post-traumatic arthritis

Oftentimes the signs are pain in the knee joint, stiffness and swelling with pain and swelling being worse in the morning or after a period of inactivity. As the cartilage wears and the bones of the joint rub against each other, the pain can become more severe and constant, interfering with daily activities. Also, pain may increase after walking, climbing stairs or kneeling along with a feeling of weakness or “buckling” of the knee.

Treatment options for post-traumatic arthritis

You and your physician may try non-surgical measures to relieve the pain and inflammation. These may include a weight loss and exercise program, physical therapy, glucosine and chondroitin supplements and anti-inflammatory medications. Your physician may try joint fluid therapy to lubricate the knee and reduce pain.

In cases where non-surgical treatment is unsuccessful, you and your physician may decide that knee surgery is the best option to help you regain your quality of life.

The information listed on this site is for informational and educational purposes and is not meant as medical advice. Every patient's case is unique and each patient should follow his or her doctor's specific instructions. Please discuss nutrition, medication and treatment options with your doctor to make sure you are getting the proper care for your particular situation. The information on this site does not replace your doctor's specific instructions.