You’ve likely experienced some knee pain in your lifetime. Some forms of knee pain can arise from normal day-to-day activities. It can also develop due to chronic stress, severe injuries, and even certain diseases.
For your doctor to provide you with a correct diagnosis, you need to describe the sensation accurately. Your doctor will ask you detailed questions about your pain, and it helps to provide as much information as possible. Here’s how you can precisely communicate your symptoms to a knee doctor.
Rate Your Pain
A knee doctor may ask you to use a pain scale to assess the severity of the aching in your knee. Different clinics have different measures. However, you are likely to encounter any of the following standardized scales:
- Verbal rating scales (VRS): Rate pain according to mild, moderate, or severe
- Visual analog scales (VAS): Rate pain according to faces with verbal descriptors
- Numerical rating scales (NRS): Rate pain between 0-10
These scales can help determine the urgency of your treatment. For mild pain, your doctor may recommend physical therapy, while for severe cases, they may recommend a minimally invasive treatment or prescription medicine.
Pain scales also help your doctor determine how well your body responds to treatment. They’ll compare the severity of your pain over time to see if your condition is improving.
Declare Other Symptoms
Knee pain can come with other symptoms. Examples include:
- Weakness and instability
- Unusual appearance or deformity
- Swelling and stiffness
- Popping or creaking noises
- Gait issues
Pain with swelling and gait issues usually result from sprained or strained muscles and ligaments. Torn cartilages can also cause pain with swelling and difficulty walking. If your painful knee also has an unusual appearance, you may have a dislocated kneecap. To remedy this condition, your orthopedic doctor may prescribe physical therapy and supportive devices. Severe injuries may warrant orthopedic surgery.
Meanwhile, knee pain accompanied by fever may indicate an infection. If this is the case, an orthopedic doctor may recommend antibiotics as part of your treatment. Lastly, if you have chronic pain with swelling and immobility, you may have arthritis. Advanced stages of arthritis may call for orthopedic surgery. Be sure to mention these additional symptoms to your knee doctor, so they can narrow down on the correct diagnosis.
Share Frequency And History
Make it a point to share the history of your symptoms with your orthopedic doctor. Most knee injuries arise from traumatic events like vehicular accidents or sports injuries. However, some knee injuries can develop due to gradual and repetitive stress.
Also, make sure you tell your doctor about the history of your symptoms. Talk about when you first noticed the pain and when it hurts the most. Certain situations and movements can trigger your symptoms. These details are worth mentioning to your knee doctor.
If you’ve been experiencing these symptoms for a long time, your doctor may recommend advanced pain management options. Once conservative treatments no longer work, they may recommend orthopedic surgery.
Identify Movement Triggers
Some activities may trigger your pain, especially high-impact sports and other athletic activities. Inform your knee doctor if you feel pain while:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Running or jogging
Labor-intensive occupations like construction and farming can inflict repetitive stress on the knees. Be sure to discuss what sorts of positions or actions trigger your knee pain. Your doctor can make a better diagnosis and treatment plan by knowing all of these factors.
Furthermore, medical conditions like arthritis have different triggers. If environmental or lifestyle factors cause or affect your knee pain, share this information with your knee doctor. Some examples include:
- Cold weather
- Humid weather
- Weight gain
Knee Doctor In Little Rock, AR
Several conditions and injuries can contribute to knee pain. It is vital to accurately describe your pain to your orthopedic doctor. You should rate your pain, enumerate symptoms, note down the frequency, and remember specific triggers.
If you’re looking for an orthopedic doctor in Little Rock, visit Bowen Hefley Orthopedics. Dr. William Hefley, a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon, leads our team of healthcare professionals. To help you stay active, Dr. Hefley prefers to use minimally invasive procedures for the knees, hips, and shoulders.
If your condition requires it, you can rest easy knowing your orthopedic surgery will be performed by a highly experienced surgeon. Furthermore, our team of physiotherapists and clinicians will design a rehabilitation plan to speed up your recovery.
To schedule a consultation, you may request an appointment online or call us at (800) 336-2412. We look forward to helping you get back on your feet!