When you bend your knee do large clicks and cracks resonate around you? Do you frequently stop because your knee locks or feels like it just is not bending correctly? Ahh the grinding you say!
You are not alone. Many people struggle with long standing knee pain and discomfort. It is far to common and yet many people learn to live with it. Unfortunately is not until the pain inhibits them from doing the activities they love, before many people begin to look for solutions that will return them back to where pain and discomfort are no longer associated with their daily lives.
The First Step is Understanding
First we must understand that there are a variety of causes for the knee pain inclusive of: injury, overuse, or underlying conditions like arthritis. For the best proper treatment the cause of the pain needs to be determined before any treatment can be offered. The treatments often include getting to the root of the stiffness and inflammation.
It is crucial that the cause of the pain be diagnosed in order to offer the best treatment. Here are a number of very common diagnoses:
- Arthritis – Generally tends to be the most widespread cause of knee pain and there is a selection of treatments on offer.
- Ligament Injuries – These can be caused or exacerbated during sports or athletic activities leading to discomfort and instability.
- Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury
- Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) Injury
- Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) Injury
- Cartilage Injuries | Meniscal Tear – This is a common knee pain cause in young and old.
- Patellar Tendonitis – Tendonitis around the joint is most commonly of the patellar tendon, the large tendon over the front of the knee.
- Chondromalacia Patella – Chondromalacia is a softening of the cartilage which leads to under the kneecap, this is common among the 15-35 year old age group.
- Dislocating Kneecap – This causes acute symptoms during the dislocation, but can also lead to chronic knee pain.
- Baker’s Cyst – This is a swelling in the rear of the joint, and is usually a sign of another underlying problem such as a meniscus tear.
- Bursitis – The most common bursa affected around the joint is that just above the kneecap, commonly this is found in people that kneel during their work.
- Plica Syndrome – This is an uncommon cause of knee pain, and can be tricky to diagnose, diagnosis is usually made at the time of arthroscopy.
- Osgood-Schlatter Disease – This is a condition seen in adolescents and is due to irritation of the growth plate just at the front of the joint.
- Osteochondritis Dissecans – (OCD) is another condition seen in adolescents due to the growth of the bone around the joint.
- Gout – This is not a common cause for knee pain but patients with a history of this condition may find it is the cause of knee pain.
The Greatest Step
The first pain free step is to schedule an appointment with our office. Our expert team will run thorough examinations to help get to the root cause of your discomfort and set you on the path with the best recommendations for getting you back into life without knee pain!
For Your Health,
Dr. Scott Van Dam