The Pain Gets Worse Instead Of Better
If you iced the knee, put it up for a few hours, and took some ibuprofen and the knee hurts even worse a few hours later, that can be an indication that home treatments arent going to cut it in this case. Maybe you have a more serious injury than you thought at first that a professional needs to diagnose.
These are five situations where the practical and safe thing to do is to seek immediate medical attention. But whether you decide on an emergency room visit or stick with urgent care, remember to let someone else drive. Driving with undiagnosed knee pain is unsafe, especially if its in the leg you use to drive with.
Additional Services You May Need
What Is The Long
Some knee pain, especially pain caused by osteoarthritis, will likely be permanent. Thats because the structure of the knee is damaged. Without surgery or another type of extensive treatment, youll continue to feel pain, inflammation, and swelling in your knee.
The long-term outlook for chronic knee pain involves managing pain, preventing flare-ups, and working to reduce irritation to the knee.
You Participate In High
Its important to stay active, and maintaining an exercise routine can actually help knee pain. But high-impact activities can make knee pain worse. Exercise like running, kickboxing, or high intensity interval training can jar your joints and make your knee pain worse. Some stretching exercises, like squats and lunges, can put extra pressure on your knees as well.
Whatever the cause of your knee pain, we can help. Dr. Shults and the team at Coastal Empire Orthopedics offer a range of knee pain treatments for patients. From physical therapy and bracing to reconstruction or knee replacement surgery, were committed to getting you back to your active lifestyle.
You shouldnt have to live with knee pain. Dr. Shults and his team can help diagnose your pain and find a treatment plan that works for you. Get back to enjoying your life with compassionate care at Coastal Empire Orthopedics. Call our Savannah, Georgia, office today or book your first appointment online and start finding relief from your knee pain.
You May Like: What Is Good For Knee Pain
Pressing On The Knee Doesnt Hurt
Sometimes, knee pain can be caused by problems elsewhere in the body. Sciatica which generally refers to pain that travels from the lower back into the lower legs can cause pain down the leg through the knee, for example. Hip problems can also cause pain in the knee area, Gotlin says. If youre unable to increase your pain level by pressing or touching your knee, your knee might not be injured at all and you should consult your doctor to figure out whats going on. If you cant make it hurt, its possible that the injury may have come from somewhere else, Gotlin explains.
Change The Way You Walk To Ease Knee Pain With Osteoarthritis
Overloaded or unevenly loaded knee joints can cause osteoarthritis , or cause your OA to get worse. Learning how to walk differently may be able to correct the loading problem and reduce your knee pain. This approach is being studied in people with medial, or inner, compartment OA which is 10 times more common than other forms of knee OA.
The medial knee compartment bears a much higher load than the lateral compartment, says Pete Shull, PhD, assistant professor in the School of Mechanical Engineering at Shanghai Jiao Tong University in Shanghai, China. Thats just the way our bodies are structured. The inside knee compartment experiences loading thats two to three times higher than the outside.
Researchers are looking for ways to shift some of the medial compartments load to the lateral one. The lateral compartment almost always has healthy cartilage, says Shull. The compartments are like brake pads on a bike, unevenly worn. So by changing the way someone walks, we can get the cartilage in the compartments to wear more evenly.
Don’t Miss: How Can I Get My Knee To Stop Hurting
Causes Of Pain Behind The Knee
There are a number of causes of pain behind the knee, which include:
- your knee joint wearing down as you get older for example, you may have osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis
- a benign or cancerous growth
You can access a range of treatments on a pay as you go basis, including physiotherapy. Find out more about physiotherapy >
How Does Walking Help The Knees
The knee is a very intricately designed joint comprised of a series of tendons, ligaments, and meniscus . Unlike muscles, cartilage doesnt get its nourishment from blood, but instead relies on synovial fluid within the joint. Movement causes the release of synovial fluid into the joint, walking can lubricate the knee, reduce stiffness and provide nutrients to the cartilage.
Recommended Reading: Outside Knee Pain When Bending
Musculoskeletal Walking Difficulty Causes
Walking difficulty may be the result of musculoskeletal abnormalities or ailments.
- Mechanical: Problems in alignment and orientation of the parts of the leg such as the hips, the knee, and the ankle can result in gait abnormalities. Furthermore, lack of flexibility and strength in the muscles of the leg can also affect alignment and gait. These mechanical causes can affect how you walk and result in associated walking difficulty symptoms.
- Destructive: There are conditions that cause direct damage and injury to the muscles of the lower extremities that result in weakness that makes it physically difficult to walk. Muscular dystrophy is a common condition that results in this type of muscular weakening that often presents in young age.
When Should I Be Concerned About Not Being Able To Straighten Knee
A single episode where you cant straighten the knee that is not associated with other symptoms typically does not warrant concern or further evaluation. Multiple episodes of not being able to straighten your knee warrant further evaluation. Who should evaluate the clicking in your knee? Bypass your surgeon and schedule a consultation with a physician trained in Interventional Orthopedics. Surgeons provide surgical solutions that are not always in your best interest. What is Interventional Orthopedics? It is a board-certified physician in PM& R or anesthesia with advanced orthopedic training with nonsurgical treatment options. They use orthobiologics to heal injured orthopedic tissue. Orthobioligcs are biological substances naturally found in the body that are used to promote quicker healing of muscle, tendon, and bone injuries. To learn more please click on the video below.
Recommended Reading: How Much Is Knee Surgery Without Insurance
What You Need To Know
- The most common causes of knee pain are related to aging, injury or repeated stress on the knee.
- Common knee problems include sprained or strained ligaments, cartilage tears, tendonitis and arthritis.
- Diagnosing a knee injury or problem includes a medical examination and usually the use of a diagnostic procedure such as an x-ray, MRI, CT scan or arthroscopy.
- Both non-operative and surgical treatment options are available to treat knee pain and problems depending on the type and severity of the condition.
How To Help Prevent Knee Pain
And if you want to help prevent knee pain in the future? Exercise regularly so that youre strengthening your quadriceps, hamstrings and gluteal muscles, says Dr. White. Its also important to stretch to increase quadricep and hamstring flexibility.
Wearing shoes with sturdy soles and proper arch support can also help ease pain and issues you may already have, says Dr. White. I would say the top reasons people get into trouble with their knees are things they could prevent by changing lifestyle habits. This includes maintaining a healthy weight, as being overweight can also lead to increased wear and tear on the joints.
Want more advice from our experts? to receive a weekly email of our latest articles.
To learn more about your orthopedic condition or to find a provider, visit henryford.com/ortho.
Dr. Nancy White is a sports medicine physician at Henry Ford Health. She sees patients at Henry Ford Medical CenterNovi and Henry Ford Medical CenterBloomfield Township.
What You Can Do Now
Shull and colleagues at Stanford University in California are working to develop wearable equipment to enable real-time feedback about gait patterns that can be used in clinics.
For now, patients can get movement retraining by working with a physical therapist, says orthopedic surgeon Jason Dragoo, MD, associate professor in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Stanford, who has been working with Shull and others on gait retraining research. The physical therapist can help them to walk symmetrically and to spend equal time on both legs, making sure that the trunk is over the legs and not swaying side to side. When you limp, you lose efficiency and that can make knee pain worse.
Whats most important is to practice the new movement, says Dr. Dragoo: Once the physical therapist teaches you how to walk differently, you have to be committed to watching the way you walk.
You Sit For Long Periods Of Time
If your knee hurts, you might want to stay off of it. But resting too much makes your muscles weaken and often makes knee pain worse. Find a way to get moving without hurting your knee. Some good exercises for people with knee pain include walking, swimming, and water aerobics.
Exercise strengthens the muscles around your knee and helps support the joint. At Coastal Empire Orthopedics, we can help you find the best exercise to keep you moving, even with knee pain.
Don’t Miss: Can Gout Cause Knee Pain
How To Get Moving
Within the first 24 to 48 hours after your knee problem has started you should try to:
- reduce your activities but move as much as your symptoms allow
- put your leg in an elevated position, when resting
- move your knee gently for 10 to 20 seconds every hour when you’re awake
- avoid long periods on your feet
When using stairs it may help to:
- lead with your good leg when going upstairs to reduce the strain on your knee
- lead with your problem leg when going downstairs to reduce the strain on your knee
- use a handrail when going up and downstairs
After 48 hours:
- try to use your leg more – exercise really helps your knee and can relieve pain
- do whatever you normally would and stay at, or return to work – this is important and is the best way to get better
It’s beneficial to do specific exercises that can help in your recovery. They may be challenging at the beginning so just do what you can and try to build it up over time.
Keeping active’s the single best thing you can do for your general health.
Being physically active can:
- maintain your current levels of fitness even if you have to modify what you normally do, any activity is better than none
- keep your other muscles and joints strong and flexible
- prevent a recurrence of the problem
Avoid sports or heavy lifting until you have less discomfort and good movement. Remember to warm up fully before you start sporting activities.
Is Your Knee Pain Making Daily Activities A Chore
Knee pain can make daily activities a chore. Walking becomes a love/hate activity. Walking is recommended to help reduce symptoms by maintaining muscle mass, reducing blood pressure and also as a way to stay functional by maintaining joint mobility. Many people are tentative to start a walking program because they think it will create more knee pain!
Contrary to popular belief, walking doesnt make symptoms worse. Daily structured walking programs reduce stiffness and inflammation. Walking is definitely an exercise that is preferred for people with osteoarthritis, it is always recommended to discuss any forms of exercise with your physician when you have a chronic condition. Walking not only helps with reducing pain and increasing joint flexibility it also helps with bone density, increased speed and a better quality of life.
Walking can help to decrease overall health risks. According to the Arthritis Foundation Walking lowers the risk of blood clots, since the calf acts as a venous muscle pump, contracting and pumping blood from the feet and legs back to the heart, reducing the load on the heart.
Recommended Reading: How Long Should You Wait Between Knee Replacements
Can Someone With Pfp Syndrome Play Sports
Most people with PFP syndrome need to cut back or stop sports for some time. Follow the health care provider’s instructions on when it’s safe for you to go back to sports. This usually is when:
- Hip, leg, and core strength is near normal.
- Flexibility, especially in the hamstring muscle, has improved.
- There’s no pain with everyday activities, such as walking and going up/down stairs.
- Any pain with activity is very mild and goes away within a few minutes of starting the activity.
Professional Help For Knee Injuries
- Aspiration if the knee joint is grossly swollen, the doctor may release the pressure by drawing off some of the fluid with a fine needle.
- Physiotherapy including techniques to reduce pain, kneecap taping, exercises for increased mobility and strength, and associated rehabilitation techniques.
- Arthroscopic surgery or keyhole surgery, where the knee operation is performed by inserting slender instruments through small incisions . Cartilage tears are often treated with arthroscopic surgery.
- Open surgery required when the injuries are more severe and the entire joint needs to be laid open for repair.
Also Check: Why Does My Knee Hurt Going Down Stairs
It Hurts To Walk Up Stairs
After a strenuous workout, it can be difficult to move around. Your legs may be sore, and even simple tasks like walking may feel like a challenge. Knee injuries are a little different, though. Instead of soreness, it may feel like dull to sharp pain especially when taking the stairs. This often happens when the cartilage underneath your kneecap is damaged. While osteoarthritis can be the leading cause of this, chondromalacia patellae also plays a role. In addition to your knee hurting while taking the stairs, other signs of runners knee include:
- Grinding or cracking sensations when bending or extending your knee
- Pain that worsens after prolonged periods of sitting, standing, or exercising
- Swelling or tenderness
Knee Braces And Other Supports
Orthotic inserts in your shoes might help too. It might not eliminate the noise, but a cane might help you get around a little easier, too.
Read Also: Pain In Back Of The Knee When Bending
Prevention Tips For Knee Injuries
- Warm up joints and muscles by gently going through the motions of your sport or activity and stretching muscles.
- Wear appropriate footwear.
- Avoid sudden jarring motions.
- Try to turn on the balls of your feet when youre changing direction, rather than twisting through your knees.
- Cool down after exercise by performing light, easy and sustained stretches
- Build up an exercise program slowly over time.
Are You Confused When To Seek Medical For Your Knee Pain Read Our Article Below For More Information Call Us Or Schedule An Appointment Online We Serve Patients From Coral Springs Fl Parkland Fl Tamarac Fl Margate Fl North Lauderdale Fl Coconut Creek Fl
If you have a profusely bleeding leg or a broken bone, you probably will call 911. But if your knee pain isnt quite that dramatic, how do you make the distinction between something that a doctor should definitely look at right now and a minor strain that just needs to be iced?
Here are five situations in which you should seek medical attention for your knee pain.
Read Also: What Is Good For Your Knees
When Difficulty Walking Is An Emergency
Seek medical attention immediately if you experience, walking difficulty symptoms such as:
- Sudden-onset numbness or weakness that impedes your ability to stand up or get up from a chair
- New bladder or bowel dysfunction
- Sudden-onset sexual dysfunction: These could be signs of serious, life-threatening conditions such as stroke and spinal injury
Your Knee Is Moving Or Shifting
Changing direction suddenly while your foot is planted on the ground can result in a dislocated knee. While this typically isnt considered a serious injury, some rare cases are. A dislocated knee can often include torn ligaments, broken blood vessels, and damaged nerves. When this happens, your knee may feel like its moving or shifting when you walk. You may also experience:
- Inability to continue with day-to-day activities
Read Also: How To Lighten My Knees And Elbows
You Have Difficulty Walking
Its fairly obvious that many knee injuries can make it hard and very painful to walk.
If your pain is from a severe knee injury, it can be next to impossible to walk.
You will often need to be helped around the house or use crutches.
If your pain is to the point where you cant get around the house anymore, it is definitely serious, and it should be evaluated as soon as possible.
X-rays will be useful to rule out fractures if you cant put any weight on the knee.
You Ignore Pain Flare
If youre suffering from arthritis or a minor knee injury, you should take care to treat pain flare-ups. Treating the pain when it happens can help manage it. Follow the RICE procedure rest, ice, compression, elevation to calm your knee pain.
If your knee hurts, stop what youre doing and rest. Apply ice to reduce inflammation, consider wearing a compression bandage, and elevate your knee when resting.
You May Like: Why Do My Knees Get Stiff After Sitting