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Choosing GAE Knee Procedure Over Surgery

Posted on November 18, 2023

As you age, your knees may wear down. In other words, the older you are, the more likely it is that you've sustained damage to your cartilage (smooth tissue located between your bones.) This allows osteoarthritis to attack your knees, leading to pain, stiffness and mobility limits.

Once, knee surgery was the only way to relieve osteoarthritis-related knee pain. Today, however, patients can find relief without undergoing knee replacement surgery.

How can you treat osteoarthritis of the knee without surgery? After exhausting options like over-the-counter medications fail, patients can now find relief from the GAE knee procedure we offer at the Texas Knee Institute, also known as genicular artery embolization.

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Understanding the GAE Knee Procedure

Instead of targeting your cartilage, like older arthritis treatments, GAE addresses inflammation surrounding your knee joint.

But how does it fight inflammation? It's because the knees are lined by synovium, a kind of connective tissue that receives blood supply from six genicular arteries. So, we can reduce that inflammation by reducing blood flow to the synovium with GAE.

Put simply, our interventional radiologists use guided 3D imaging to find inflammation areas of the synovium. Then, they insert a small catheter into the artery, guiding it to those spots. Next, they inject small particles that reduce arterial blood flow, in turn reducing inflammation to provide pain relief.

Plus, when you choose the GAE knee procedure, you can avoid an overnight hospital stay. While you will have to reduce activity levels for several days following your procedure, the recovery is easier than post-surgical recoveries. In fact, most patients resume normal activity levels just days after genicular artery embolization.

Additional Benefits

GAE recovery does not usually leave patients requiring serious pain medications. However, it is not a cure for osteoarthritis, as it does not restore or repair knee cartilage. Instead, it may delay osteoarthritis progression while providing effective pain relief and improving mobility. As such, this procedure helps many patients delay or avoid knee replacement surgery entirely.

Ready to see if genicular artery embolization is your ideal alternative to knee replacement surgery? Click here to request an appointmentClick here to request an appointmentClick here to request an appointment at our Texas Knee Institute. When you come in, we will determine the extent of your osteoarthritis and determine if you're a candidate for GAE.

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