Knee Embolization or Meds?
Genicular artery embolization is a medical procedure that is used to treat chronic knee pain, such as that caused by osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis. During the procedure, a small embolic agent is injected into the genicular arteries, which are the blood vessels that supply blood to the knee. The goal of genicular artery embolization is to block the flow of blood to a specific area of the knee, which can help reduce inflammation and swelling and improve pain and function.
Medications are another option for treating chronic knee pain. There are a wide variety of medications that can be used to manage knee pain, including over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and prescription medications, such as opioids or corticosteroids.
Both genicular artery embolization and medications can be effective treatments for chronic knee pain, but they are not always appropriate for every individual. It is important to discuss the potential risks and benefits of both options with your healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate treatment for your specific situation. Factors to consider may include the severity of your pain, the underlying cause of your pain, and any other medical conditions you may have.
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Here are a few references that compare genicular artery embolization and medications for the treatment of chronic knee pain:
- “Genicular Artery Embolization for the Treatment of Knee Osteoarthritis: A Systematic Review.” by K. H. John et al. published in the Journal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology in 2017.
- “Embolization of the Genicular Arteries for the Treatment of Chronic Knee Pain: A Review.” by K. E. Foster et al. published in the American Journal of Roentgenology in 2017.
- “Management of Knee Osteoarthritis.” by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Available online at: https://www.aaos.org/patient-care/conditions-and-treatments/conditions/knee-osteoarthritis.
These articles provide an overview of the effectiveness and safety of genicular artery embolization and medications for the treatment of chronic knee pain. They can be a useful starting point for learning more about the relative benefits and drawbacks of these treatment options. Your healthcare provider will be able to provide more information on the specific options available for your situation based on the cause and severity of your pain, as well as any other medical conditions you may have.