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What Can I do About My Knee Pain Management in Wilmington, NC

What Can I do About My Knee Pain Management in Wilmington, NC

This template is not meant to be an exhaustive or all-encompassing discussion regarding the risks vs. benefits, or success rates of one therapy over another. I am hoping that it will allow you to consider all of your treatment options more carefully, and then figure out what works best for you!
Ask questions!

Treatment Option Tests needed Pros Cons Cost
Do Nothing No Best to leave it alone unless it is impacting your quality of life in a significant way Potentially missing out on activities previously enjoyed
Inability to exercise
Inability to sleep well
“Opportunity Cost” of staying on the sidelines and not doing the things you want
Steroid Shots Point-of-Care X-ray or Ultrasound
(i.e. part of treatment)
“Quick fix” and may last for months to years (best-case scenario).
Ultra-Low dose steroids (certain types) may actually protect cartilage.
As long as no more than 1-2 per year it’s probably OK, depending on age and health.
Repeated steroid doses are very unhealthy to the cartilage of the joint, and to the body as a whole. Certain types of local anesthetics can also be harmful to cartilage.
May accelerate arthritis.
Usually covered by insurance.
Cash price $200-$1000++ depending on office vs. hospital.
Lubricant Shots- Supartz, Synvisc, GelOne, etc. Point-of-Care X-ray or Ultrasound
(i.e. part of treatment)
May help pain and function. Does not involve steroid risk.
May help to normalize unhealthy chemical environment within the knee.
Usually require multiple treatments to achieve desired effect (up to 5 sessions)
Effects wear off and treatment is needed every 6-18 months for most.
Usually covered by insurance.
They will pay for treatment every 6 mos.
Cash price $200-$1000++ depending on office vs. hospital.
Dextrose Prolotherapy Point-of-Care X-ray or Ultrasound
(i.e. part of treatment)
May help pain and function.
No steroid risk.
May help to normalize unhealthy chemical environment within the knee.
Well-studied @ University of Wisconsin
Multiple treatments to achieve desired effect (up to 4 sessions)
Effects wear off over time.
NOT covered by insurance
Dextrose (sugar) load is less than
10 grams total.
$200-$300 per treatment, regardless of 1 or 2 knees.
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Point-of-Care X-ray or Ultrasound
(i.e. part of treatment)
MRI not mandatory but may help to better guide precision PRP placement
No chemicals.
The substance injected (PRP) comes from you.
Platelets obtained from venous blood (blood draw)
Growth factors and anti-inflammatory substances in platelets may help to normalize unhealthy chemical environment in knee and improve pain/function.
Multiple treatments may be needed to achieve desired effect.
Effects wear off over time.
NOT covered by insurance
Effect usually takes weeks months.
PRP is NOT “Stem Cells”!!
$750-$1500 depending on:
-1 or 2 knees
-Technology used
-Amount of blood processed.
-If multiple structures in knee being targeted simultaneously. (i.e. meniscus, MCL, LCL)
Bone Marrow Aspirate (BMA) and
Bone Marrow Concentrate (BMC)
(“Stem Cells”)
Point-of-Care X-ray or Ultrasound
(i.e. part of treatment)MRI is recommended, to help guide precision BMA/BMC placement
No chemicals.
The substance injected (BMA/BMC) comes from you.
Cells obtained from Iliac Crest (posterior “hip bone”)
Growth factors and anti-inflammatory substances in BMA/BMC may help to normalize unhealthy chemical environment in knee and improve pain/function.
Cells in BMA/BMC have potential to differentiate into other cells (cartilage and ligaments)
BMA/BMC does not grow new joints.
(Studies show that improvement in MRI appearance does not correlate to treatment outcome)
Two procedures involved
1= getting BMA from hip and
2= doing injection into knee
NOT covered by insurance
Effect usually takes weeks months.
$4000-$7000 depending on:
-1 or 2 knees
-Technology used
-Amount of blood processed.
-If multiple structures in knee being targeted simultaneously. (i.e. meniscus, MCL, LCL, ACL)
Surgery (TKA) X-rays and MRI recommended Fixes problem permanently (Best-case scenario) Requires anesthesia and hospitalization.
Longer downtime.
Covered by insurance

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1602 Physicians Drive, Suite 103.
Wilmington, NC 28401