Non-Surgical Solutions For Chronic Knee Pain

Everyone gets a sore knee now and then. Maybe you overdid it during a round of tennis, or you slept wrong and tweaked something. For some people, however, knee pain is a daily occurrence. Knee pain is often caused by arthritis, bursitis, or even just wear and tear from years of use.

If you're dealing with chronic knee pain, you may be looking for relief. You may have even considered surgery. There are many non-surgical options, however, that you can pursue that can provide relief. From physical therapy to steroid supplement injections, there are non-surgical options to discuss with your doctor before jumping into surgery.

Physical therapy

One of the most common non-surgical options for chronic knee pain, and one that many people try first, is physical therapy. A physical therapist can help you strengthen the muscles around your knee, taking some of the pressure off the joint and ease any pain you may be experiencing. Your physical therapist may also use electrical stimulation or other methods to help reduce inflammation around the joint.

Weight loss

Most Americans could stand to lose a pound or two. The National Institutes of Health states that over 82 percent are either overweight, obese, or have severe obesity. Fortunately, losing weight can help take the pressure off chronically sore knees. In fact, the Arthritis Foundation reports an equally shocking yet motivating statistic: "losing just 10 pounds would relieve 40 pounds of pressure from your knees."


There are many options for injections, including:

  • Steroid supplemental injections. While the word steroids may trigger a negative reaction, these injections differ from their negative counterparts. Steroid supplemental injections help to reduce inflammation and pain around the knee joint.
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections. These injections use your own blood to help promote healing in the knee joint.
  • Hyaluronic acid (HA) injections. Sometimes called 'gel shots' or viscosupplementation, hyaluronic acid injections are a thick, gel-like substance that naturally occurs throughout your body. HA injections help to supplement the low levels of hyaluronic acid in your knees that may be causing you pain.
  • Hyaluronate sodium injections. While the words hyaluronic acid and hyaluronate sodium are often used interchangeably, they are slightly different products for chronic knee pain. Hyaluronate sodium is an ingredient extracted from HA for use in treatment.

Surgery should always be a last resort for chronic knee pain. With so many non-surgical options available, be sure to discuss all of your options with your doctor before making a decision.