According to the Arthritis Association, studies have shown that for people who are overweight, even a modest amount of weight loss can have a significant effect on osteoarthritis pain, which is characterized by pain at the knee on beginning motion, such as arising from a chair, and increased pain with prolonged use.
In the early stages of osteoarthritis, the pain is relieved by rest, but as the disease progresses, the pain can persist after activity and even interfere with sleep.
But for those who have more than a modest amount of weight to lose or for whom excessive weight is taking a toll on more than the knees, a growing body of research shows weight loss surgery can help relieve the pain of osteoarthritis as well as some of the health problems that often accompany the disease.
Weight loss surgery reduces knee pain in obese people, and the results are similar to those seen in patients who have a knee replacement, according to a new 2014 study.
The study included 20 obese patients who had weight-loss surgery and 40 patients who had total knee replacement due to arthritis. One year after their procedure, the patients who had weight loss surgery reported significant improvements in knee pain. Their results were comparable to the patients who had a knee replacement.