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When the joint develops osteoarthritis (wear and tear arthritis) of a joint, there is a wearing down of the joint cartilage (lining of the joint surface); also found is a decrease of joint lubricating fluid which can cause pain and grinding in the joint.
Viscosupplementation (Injection Therapy) may be a therapeutic option for individuals with osteoarthritis of the knee.
The viscous supplementation injects a preparation called hyaluronic acid into the knee joint, a substance which is found in normal joint fluid. It is a gel like substance and can help lubricate the joint to enable bones to smoothly over each other and as a shock absorber for joint loads.
Although viscosupplementation will not cure arthritis, treatment can decrease symptoms of pain, stiffness, aching and improve overall function and effects may last for several months or longer. Treatment is most effective in patients with arthritis in the early stages (mild to moderate); however, some patients obtain relief even with advanced osteoarthritis.