Diagnosis of knee arthritis
When you first see your doctor at Circle, they will talk with you about your medical history and what you have done to manage the knee pain up to now. If you have previously seen you GP about your knee pain, your Circle doctor will be able to refer to these, along with any previous X-rays you may have had done.
They will carry out a series of tests on your knees to assess your range of movement in the joint and the extent of any problems. Knee pain can sometimes occur due to a problem in your back or hips, so these will also be thoroughly examined in order to rule out the possibility of referred pain.
Depending on your medical history and the knee tests, your doctor may arrange for you to have one of a number of diagnostic tests to help confirm a diagnosis or arthritis and/or treatment options. All these tests can easily be carried out at your Circle hospital, often on the same day as your consultation, and may include:
- X-ray: Where arthritis in the knee is suspected, your doctor will usually arrange for you to have an X-ray of your knee if you haven’t had one previously. Often, an X-ray of the knee will show evidence of moderate to advanced arthritis in the joint and no further tests will be needed.
- MRI scan: An MRI scanner uses strong magnets rather than ionising radiation. Standing for ‘magnetic resonance imaging’, an MRI scan provides your doctor with high-quality images of your knee joint. It is particularly good for showing subtle changes in the joint, which can be useful where the arthritis is not at an advanced stage.