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Back Pain Center

Back Pain Caused by Arthritis in the Knee

author image Graham Ulmer
Graham Ulmer began writing professionally in 2006 and has been published in the "Military Medicine" journal. He is a certified strength-and-conditioning specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Ulmer holds a Master of Science in exercise science from the University of Idaho and a Bachelor of Science in psychology from Washington State University.
Back Pain Caused by Arthritis in the Knee
Back pain related to knee arthritis is a result of favoring one side of the body. Photo Credit human anatomy showing the skeleton from the back image by patrimonio designs from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

According to the book "Joint Structure and Function: A Comprehensive Analysis," arthritis can lead to several symptoms that affect the rest of the body, mostly compensatory in nature. Back pain is likely the result of a domino effect from the individual favoring the non-affected knee.

Potential Causes

Arthritis is often originally caused by poor walking biomechanics. Any pain in the affected knee can cause an individual to favor the less painful side, further exacerbating the poor biomechanics and leading to more pain. Favoring one side will cause poor posture and thus unusual strain on joints, muscles and tendons.

Effects on Joints

This favoring of one side could result in a twisting of the femur, and thus the hip. A twisting of the femur can put the hip joint out of alignment and place excessive stress on the lumbar spine. Pain likely begins in the lower back and then works its way up to the thoracic and even cervical spine.

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Effects on Muscles

Any strain on a joint will result in excessive pulling on the tendons, which attach muscles to bones. This pulling on the tendons can lead to muscle aches and pains, especially near joints. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, poor biomechanics and arthritis can affect the rest of the body. One postural deficiency can throw the entire body out of alignment.

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  • "Joint Structure and Function: A comprehensive Analysis"; Pamela K. Levangie and Cynthia C. Norkin; 2000
  • "Resources for the Personal Trainer"; American College of Sports Medicine; 2010
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