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Viscosupplementation For The Knee

Here’s another blog in our guest series, from Dr. Steven Konkle.  Dr. Konkle is a chiropractor with 12 years experience, who currently practices in Ottawa at Remedy Chiropractic and Sports Injury Centre.  Here he provides some information on viscosupplementation for the knee.  If you’re interested in learning more about viscosupplementation, speak to your sports medicine/orthopedic physician about what options may be available to you.

As a chiropractor, my recommendation for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee is always going to include activity modifications and exercise.

However, after trying conservative care, some patients continue to look for other treatment options. Viscosupplementation is another option, which some patients refer to as "an oil change for the joints". It refers to injecting a lubricant called hyaluronic acid (HA) into the joint. Your body naturally makes HA in the joints, which decreases friction in the joints by coating the surfaces of the bones and also improves shock absorption. Over time our natural HA molecules break down, and joints with osteoarthritis tend to produce less HA. Viscosupplementation aims to improve the quality of the joint fluids, and can be performed on knees as well as other joints such as the hips, shoulders, and ankles. The benefit to viscosupplementation is temporary, but another injection can be given when symptoms return. As with all procedures, there are risks with viscosupplementation which should be discussed with the doctor providing the procedure.

Some patients find viscosupplementation to be helpful in reducing their arthritis symptoms and allowing them to return to an active lifestyle. This can also help them to perform exercises to strengthen the muscles around the joint without having the associated pain.

Dr. Stephen Konkle is a chiropractor in downtown Ottawa where he owns and operates Remedy Chiropracic & Sports Injury Centre. Dr. Konkle studied at Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College alongside Dr. Kuehnel and Dr. Lewis.

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