Pain can originate in any of the bone elements that compromise the knee joint (femur, tibia, fibula), the kneecap (patella), or the ligaments, tendons, and cartilage (meniscus). Knee pain can be increased by physical activity, obesity, and the surrounding muscles and their movements, as well as being provoked by other issues (such as a foot injury). Knee pain can afflict people of all ages, and unless it becomes severe, home remedies can assist.
Knee pain can be of varying degrees of severity. Some people may only feel a minor twinge, while others may suffer from debilitating knee pain that prevents them from going about their daily lives. Self-care practices can usually help you manage knee pain.
Causes of Knee Pain
Knee pain can either be caused by an injury to the knee structures, medical conditions, or overuse conditions. Below is a list of some of the more common causes of knee pain
- Knee bursitis (inflammation of fluid-filled sacs in the knee joint)
- Gout (arthritis related to excess uric acid)
- Patellar tendinitis
- Avascular necrosis (death of bone tissue due to limited blood flow)
- Patellofemoral pain syndrome
- Osteoarthritis (disease-causing the breakdown of joints)
- Iliotibial band syndrome
- Medial collateral ligament injury
- Baker’s cyst
- Referred pain from the hip area
- Posterior cruciate ligament injury
- Osteomyelitis (a bone infection)
- Osgood-Schlatter disease
- ACL injury (tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament in your knee)
- Broken leg
- Osteochondritis dissecans
- Collateral ligament injury
- Septic arthritis
- Torn meniscus
Associated Symptoms of Knee Pain
Some symptoms associated with knee pain include:
- inability to extend the knee, and
- limping due to discomfort,
- difficulty walking up or down steps due to ligament damage (sprain),
- locking of the knee (unable to bend the knee),
- redness and swelling,
- difficulty weight-bearing or walking due to instability of the knee,
- shifting weight to the opposite knee and foot.
When To See The Doctor
Any discomfort that does not go away after a few days or does not respond to rest should be checked by a doctor. Swelling, inability to bend, deformity, difficulty to walk or discomfort when walking, considerable pain, and fever are all symptoms and indicators that should be evaluated by a doctor.
Diagnosis of Knee Pain
A health care practitioner will first inquire about the person’s general health before focusing on the nature of the knee discomfort (how long, how severe, does anything make it feel better or worse, etc.).
Following that, a knee examination will be performed. This will entail bending the knee through its full range of motion, inspecting the ligaments for stability, and assessing any soreness or edema. Comparing the results of the sore knee examination with the results of the other knee examination is frequently beneficial. This is frequently all that is needed to make a diagnosis and begin treatment.
The doctor may wish to do further tests some of which include radiological tests, blood tests, and arthrocentesis.
Treatment of Knee Pain
Treatments for knee pain are as varied as the conditions that can cause the pain.
Medications may be provided to alleviate discomfort or treat an underlying medical problem.
If you take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain relievers for your knee discomfort on a regular basis, you should consult your doctor.
Physical treatment sessions to strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee can sometimes help it become more stable and ensure the best mechanical movements. Working with a physical therapist can help you avoid becoming hurt or making an issue worse.
In some cases, injecting drugs directly into your knee may be beneficial. Corticosteroids and lubricants are the two most common injections. Injections of corticosteroids can help with arthritis and other knee inflammations. They normally have to be done every few months or so. Lubricants that are similar to the fluid that already exists in your knee joint can aid movement and reduce pain.