This blog post was updated on May 4, 2020. Previous comments have not been removed or edited.
Without joints – in the fingers, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles - the human body would be incapable of the fluid movement so critical to daily life.
A basic understanding of a joint’s anatomy
Cartilage is a smooth, rubbery connective tissue at the end of bones that allows for the perfect sliding between the bones. The main role of the synovial membrane that frames the joint is to secrete the hyaluronic acid of the synovial fluid, which fills the small space in the joint between the two bones.That fluid provides lubrication for movement as well as nutrition to the cartilage on either end of the bones of the joint.
However, decades of wear and tear can cause cartilage to break down - or osteoarthritis - which results in pain, swelling and difficulty with movement. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting about 27 million Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – and making it one of the leading causes of disability. Weight-bearing joints, along with joints in the hands, feet and spine, are most commonly impacted, and about half of all people age 60 and older will experience symptoms of OA in the knee.
OA can progress. Bones may develop growths called spurs. Pieces of bone or cartilage may chip off. The body’s inflammatory process, which signals the release of proteins and enzymes, will cause further cartilage damage in the process. Ultimately, the cartilage wears away and bone rubs against bone - leading to joint damage and even more pain.
Although age is commonly linked to OA, other factors include:
- Excess weight
- Gender: Before age 45, men are more likely to develop osteoarthritis; after 50, it’s women. At about age 80, one in four people have symptoms of OA, regardless of gender.
Is surgery the only option after a bone-on-bone diagnosis?
Dr. Paul Mogannam, medical director of Flexogenix®, says they have listened to their patients and agree that there are other options with a bone-on-bone diagnosis:
- Heat/cold therapy
- Low-impact exercises, such as swimming, yoga and cycling, to strengthen muscles and improve joint mobility.
- Assistive devices such as braces and splints
- Weight loss – even losing as little as five pounds can help decrease the symptoms of osteoarthritis – especially in large joints such as the knees and hips
Viscosupplementation is a procedure during which fluid is injected into the joint, as an effective knee pain treatment.
“Hyaluronic acid is a normal component of the cartilage and fluid in the joint,” says Dr. Mogannam.
Because the weight-bearing knee joint is particularly prone to injury – and osteoarthritis - Flexogenix® has created the Knee-Flex 5-Step protocol that offers nonsurgical knee pain treatment:1. First, we provide immediate pain relief.
Our day 1 priority is to help you experience life without knee pain. Using our advanced imaging techniques, we map the sensory nerves around the knee. Next, utilizing innovative procedures to reduce nerve pain around the joints, the nerves are prevented from continuing to transmit pain signals. This replaces the use of steroids and protects patients from the long-term damage often associated with steroid injections. While the pain relief is significant, it is temporary and we must remind patients that it does not replace the reconditioning necessary in steps two through five of the Knee-Flex 5-Step protocol.
2. Next, we lubricate and protect the knee joint.
Using the latest image-guidance technology, our medical team administers the injection of hyaluronic acid (HA) with pinpoint precision. The HA provides lubrication and tempers the friction within the joint to reduce cartilage wear and tear, diminish bone-on-bone pain, and increase mobility. The precision and accuracy of the image-guided injection ensures the gel-like fluid is injected directly into the joint capsule for optimal results.
3. Then, we initiate Kineti-Flex®.
With the knee pain controlled and mobility restored, the process begins to research the true health, strength, and integrity of your joints, and design your individualized medically supervised reconditioning program. This is the step where we assess the many contributing factors that actually caused your knee/joint pain, and develop a detailed conditioning prescription to correct the problems, and prevent the pain from returning again.
4. Next, we correct the knee alignment with bracing.
In concert with Kineti-Flex®, our medical team carefully examines the alignment of the joint, and whether it can benefit from either short-term or long-term bracing. As with every aspect of Flexogenix® treatments, we have extensively researched the latest innovations and advancements in bracing. When prescribed correctly, bracing can be extremely effective in unloading and redistributing pressure off the worn areas of the joint. Again, our goal is long-term joint pain relief. Effective bracing and alignment can be a key to this success.
5. Finally, we continuously promote healing.
Our final step is an advanced injection protocol to stop any further degradation of the knee joint and cartilage by promoting the body’s natural healing response with Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP). This step is essential and introduces growth factors that create a strong foundation to restore the integrity of the joint. Together with Kineti-Flex® and bracing, PRP completes a comprehensive treatment plan that has helped thousands avoid surgery. With a continued commitment to your Kineti-Flex® regimen, you can achieve a level of health and success that you never thought was possible.
Dr. Mogannam points to research indicating that nearly half of all knee-replacement surgeries might not even be warranted in the first place. One Flexogenix® patient, a triathlete, for example, was told 20 years ago that he needed need replacement surgery. Today, he’s still active and has not had surgery.
“Not only is there tremendous financial savings for the system – a knee replacement typically only lasts 10-15 years - but more importantly our protocol is safer and more effective for the patient,” he says. “And we avoid opiates.”
Take advantage of a free, no-obligation consultation at Flexogenix® today to learn if a non-surgical approach is the right approach for you!