Non SurgicalTreatments

Musculoskeletal injuries do not always require surgery. As a general rule, surgery should be the option of last resort.

Surgery should only be undertaken if

  • Surgery essential to prevent ongoing damage.
  • Symptoms persist despite non-surgical treatment.
Knee ligament injury

Urgent Surgery: Conditions Requiring No Trial of Non-Surgical Treatment

These conditions are uncommon but include:

  • Mechanical blockage in the knee, like a torn cartilage causing locking. Surgery might be needed to prevent further damage
  • If a ligament is torn so badly that if left in its torn position, it will not heal up with non surgical treatment
Mechanical blockage in the kneeThe torn meniscus is jammed in the knee, blocking motion. Surgery is necessary to improve the condition
ligament TornThe ruptured ligament is folded in the knee joint and won't heal without surgery

What Non Surgical treatment options are there?

These can include some or all of:

rest IllustrationRest
analgesics IllustrationAnalgesia
Injections IllustrationInjections
Taping or bracing the knee IllustrationTaping or bracing the knee
Weight reduction IllustrationWeight reduction
activity modifications IllustrationLifestyle or activity modifications
physiotherapy IllustrationStructured physiotherapy

For how long should I persist with non surgical treatment?

Provided there is no urgent indication to undergo surgery there is no limitation on the duration of non surgical treatment. As a general rule I would recommend at least 3 to 4 weeks.

The focus is on progress, not time. Non-surgical treatment continues if symptoms improve, regardless of speed. Consider surgery if symptoms worsen, plateau, or affect life, and if accepting surgical risks.

Health Illustration
Knee background

Do you need a

Knee replacement?

Dr Seeto in affiliation with Medibank Private and East Sydney Private hospital, offers a program for eligible Medibank Private Members, to eliminate medical out of pocket costs for your Knee Replacement.

The program includes a pre-surgery preparation program, spending the minimal time necessary in hospital, as well as home rehabilitation if necessary.


Out Of Pocket

Knee operation

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