Our knees bear the brunt of the weight of our bodies. They help get us to where we are going, whether it be upstairs, downstairs or just walking straight ahead. When pain sets in, it can be crippling. Knowing what might be causing the pain is crucial to the proper treatment of it.
Although arthritis is probably the most common cause of knee pain, there are many other reasons for this common complaint. To properly treat the pain, it is important to accurately diagnose the cause of it.
For example, ligament injuries - Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL); Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL), and Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) commonly occur during athletic activities and cause discomfort and instability.
- Cartilage injuries or meniscal tears are seen in both younger and older patients and are extremely painful.
- Patellar Tendonitis is most commonly the patellar tendon, the large tendon over the front of the knee.
- Chondromalacia Patella causes knee pain under the knee cap and is a result of softening cartilage. We usually see this condition in patients 15-35 years old.
- Bursitis is common in people who spend a lot of time kneeling - gardeners, carpet layers, etc.
- Baker's cyst is swelling in the back of the joint. This is usually a sign of another problem, such as a meniscus tear.
There are dozens more causes of knee pain, but these are the most common that our patients present. If you or a loved one is experiencing knee pain, the most important thing you can do is see your doctor immediately. The cause of your pain will almost always become more exacerbated, causing increased discomfort – a "wait and see" attitude can be truly detrimental and should not be an option for you.