At a certain point it seems like no one is exempt from a certain amount of knee pain. Whether you're older, younger, an athlete, or just a regular Joe-- you'll likely have an issue with your knees at some point in your life. The damage can be from a sports related accident, even stepping down the stairs wrong could do it, or the damage could be unavoidable degenerative effects of your day to day activities. The question then becomes: To operate or not to operate? Ultimately the decision is one you should carefully ponder with your specialist, but we do have a solid argument for physical therapy sans surgery to consider as you're weighing your options.