When To See A Doctor About Pain In Outer Side Of Knee
We recommend you see a doctor if you have any of the following:
- outer knee pain after trauma
- pain that has not settled after a few weeks with simple treatments such as ice and oral NSAIDs
- mechanical symptoms such as locking or giving way
- nerve symptoms such as numbness or tingling suggestive of nerve damage
What To Expect At Your Office Visit
Your provider will perform a physical exam, and look at your knees, hips, legs, and other joints.
Your provider may do the following tests:
- MRI of the knee if a ligament or meniscus tear could be the cause
- CT scan of the knee
- Joint fluid culture
Your provider may inject a steroid into your knee to reduce pain and inflammation.
You may need to learn stretching and strengthening exercises. You also may need to see a podiatrist to be fitted for orthotics.
In some cases, you may need surgery.
Investigation Of Pain Inside The Knee
Your doctor will ask you about the type of pain you are feeling, and also note the size of your affected knee compared to your unaffected knee. Any discolouration and warmth will be noted as will the range of movement you are able to effect. The doctor may need further investigation in the form of medical imaging to detect fluid or a possible fracture, and perhaps a blood test to identify any rheumatoid factor or antinuclear antibodies. Fluid may also be drawn from the knee to test for uric acid or bacteria if an infection or inflammation is suspected.
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How Is Iliotibial Band Syndrome Treated
Your healthcare provider might suggest several different treatment strategies to help ease your symptoms. These might include:
- Limiting activities that make your knee pain worse for a while , and returning to these activities slowly
- Icing the outside of your knee
- Taking over-the-counter pain medicines
- Getting corticosteroid shots to decrease inflammation
- Making changes to your activity, like lowering your bicycle seat for cycling or improving your running form
- Practicing special exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles around your hip and your knee
You may find it helpful to work with a physical therapist as well.
These changes help most people with iliotibial band syndrome. Your healthcare provider might advise surgery if you still have significant symptoms after 6 months of trying these other therapies. Several different surgical choices exist, including one that removes the part of the iliotibial band that moves over the femur. You can discuss all your surgical choices with your healthcare provider.
Knee Pain And Problems
Knee pain is a common complaint among adults and most often associated with general wear and tear from daily activities like walking, bending, standing and lifting. Athletes who run or play sports that involve jumping or quick pivoting are also more likely to experience knee pain and problems. But whether an individuals knee pain is caused by aging or injury, it can be a nuisance and even debilitating in some circumstances.
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What Painkiller Is Best For Knee Pain
Seeking interventional orthopedics treatments to address the source of your knee pain and injury should be the specific goal. If a painkiller is needed in the meantime, ditch the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for pain and swelling and all of their dangerous side effects and opt for supplements that have been shown to be effective for knee pain and swelling in the joint, including curcumin,glucosamine, and chondroitin .
What about steroid injections for knee pain and swelling? Just dont do it! There is a long list of toxic side effects associated with these drugs, including spinal fracture risk, vaginal bleeding, adrenal problems, joint cartilage loss , diminishing relief with each injection, and so much more .
The upshot? You can likely diagnose your own cause of side of knee pain. Just realize that almost everything Ive discussed above doesnt require a big surgery to fix. Instead, highly precise injections of our own platelets or stem cells can usually heal these problems with minimal downtime.
However, be cautious out there as youll find lots of clinics that know very little about treating these issues and that want to charge big bucks to inject magic amniotic or umbilical cord stem cells in this area and then often IV. This is not legit treatment as these are dead tissues being hawked as live stem cells. So buyer beware!
Ann Intern MedChris Centeno, MD
Possible Causes Of Pain
Quadriceps tendonitis this is caused by the irritation, strain or injury to the quadriceps tendon.
This affects the underside of the kneecap and the trochlear groove in the femur in which it moves. When the articular cartilage covering the surfaces of the bone wears away and becomes inflamed the bones come into contact with each other resulting in pain.
A plica is the fold in the thin synovial membrane that lines the knee joint. There were four of these folds in the knee joint originally, but they often become absorbed during foetal development. About 50% of the population is thought to have the remains of the embryonic plicae. When a plica becomes inflamed, perhaps because of repetitive knee movement, trauma or twisting, it causes pain and weakness in the knee.
Lateral patellar facet overload syndrome
This refers to dull aching pain underneath, around the sides or below kneecap. It is caused by increased pressure on the lateral facet of the patella. The reason for this is improper tracking, poor alignment or dislocation of the kneecap. The condition is often apparent during repetitive exercise such as climbing stairs.
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What Medical Conditions Cause Knee Pain
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that can affect any joint in the body. It can cause severe pain and disability, as well as swelling.
Gout is a form of arthritis that is most commonly found in the big toe, though it can also affect the knee. Gout tends to flare up and is extremely painful during the acute episodes. When there is no flare-up, the knee can be pain free.
With , the knee joint can become infected this leads to pain, swelling, and fever. This condition requires antibiotics and drainage treatments as soon as possible.
Chronic use/overuse conditions
Patellar tendinitis is an inflammation of the tendons connecting the kneecap to the shinbone . Patellar tendinitis is a chronic condition often found in individuals repeating the same motion during exercise .
Patellofemoral pain syndrome is caused by degeneration or stress under the kneecap where it meets the thighbone . Patellofemoral pain syndrome occurs in runners and cyclists.
Osteoarthritis: a wearing down of cartilage of the joint due to use and age
Prepatellar bursitis: Inflammation to the bursa in front of the kneecap may cause anterior knee pain.
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For Ligament Cartilage And Joint Tears
Ligament, cartilage and joint tears in your knee will need to be addressed by your doctor.
After imaging diagnostics and a clinical assessment, your doctor will let you know if your treatment will include physical therapy and anti-inflammatory medication, or if youll need to undergo surgery to repair the injury.
Recovery from knee surgery can take some time. It may take anywhere from 6 months to a year to resume your normal activities.
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Burning Pain On The Sides Of The Knee
If you have experienced a burning on the left or right side of your knee, you know that this type of pain is excruciating. Many have compared it to sticking a dagger into the knee joint.
What is generally going on in this situation is that your knee joint is pushing down on your meniscus, which is the knees shock absorber, and forcing it to squeeze out the sides of the knee. Just like if you were to put bubble gum between two bricks and press down, it can ooze out the sides. If there is excess tension in your knee, the meniscus will start to do the same thing and squeeze out the sides of your knee joint, causing the intense pain to emerge.
Many times this can cause the knee to feel unstable because that shock absorber that guided and cushioned the knees movements is dislocated. Fortunately for you, there is a pain free solution to this burning pain.
The first thing you need to do if you have this type of knee pain is to relax. If your knee is in a comfortable position and the tension is removed, the nerves in your knee will relax as well. The key here is to create space in your knee joint so that the meniscus can go back into its normal position. Once this happens, the relief is immediate.
The stretches you need for this condition are presented in my group coaching program called Knee Club. For info on that click here: Join Knee Club
Leave me some feedback and comments here on the page. I look forward to hearing from you.
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Common Peroneal Nerve Injury
This nerve passes from the back of the lower thigh and crosses the lateral knee before supplying the lower leg muscles.
Similar to LCL injury, common peroneal nerve damage can occur from a blow to the inside of the knee, stretching the knee outwards. This injury can pull or tear the nerve.
Generally, symptoms include pain, numbness, and tingling of the lower legs outer part and the foots top.
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Other Inner Knee Pain Treatments
If your inner knee pain worsens after several days, or if basic at-home remedies dont alleviate symptoms, you should go see your doctor.
Some treatment methods for more serious knee injuries include:
- Steroid injection. This injection is used to treat pes anserine bursitis.
- Physical therapy. Therapy often involves stretching, exercises, and ultrasound therapy.
Gas In The Digestive Tract
A buildup of gas in the colon can lead to pain on the left side of the body. The pain can also occur on the right side or on both sides.
Under normal circumstances, people pass gas through burping or passing it through the rectum. This is a routine process for the body. In fact, most people produce about 14 pints of gas per day and pass gas about 1423 times per day.
Sometimes, gas accumulates in the digestive tract from swallowing excess air while eating or drinking. It can also accumulate due to the breakdown of undigested foods by intestinal bacteria.
Foods that can cause excess gas include carbonated beverages, sugar substitutes, and fiber supplements.
Other symptoms include:
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons recommend similar treatments for sprains and strains. These are:
A person may also need to perform gentle exercises and take OTC medications such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or naproxen.
A ruptured ovarian cyst causes pain that typically occurs on one side of the body.
An ovarian cyst is a fluid-filled sac that can develop inside, or on, an ovary. The Office on Womens Health note that these are common and usually harmless.
Ovarian cysts can rupture. In some cases, they do not cause any symptoms, or they may cause mild symptoms. In other cases, the ruptured cyst can cause severe symptoms, such as sudden and severe pain in the lower belly. Bleeding can also occur.
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Common Causes Of Knee Pain Without Injury
Of all the joints, our knees are arguably the ones most likely to feel pain. Lots of injuries can cause knee pain. Car accidents, falls and sports accidents are some of the most common causes of knee injuries, like fractures, torn ligaments and sprains. Even though its never fun to experience knee pain, when it follows an injury, at least you have a pretty good idea whats causing your discomfort. And that can make it a little easier to seek and receive proper treatment.
Sometimes though, knee pain occurs without a preceding injury. In those cases, it can be tempting to ignore the pain at first to see if it subsides on its own. The problem is, even though you might not have had an accident, the issue causing your pain can still be serious. And delaying care can wind up prolonging your symptoms and even making them worse.
How Are Knee Problems Diagnosed
In addition to a complete medical history and physical exam, other tests for knee problems may include:
X-ray. This test uses invisible electromagnetic energy beams to make images of internal tissues, bones, and organs onto film.
Magnetic resonance imaging . This test uses large magnets, radiofrequencies, and a computer to make detailed images of organs and structures within the body can often determine damage or disease in a surrounding ligament or muscle.
Computed tomography scan . This test uses X-rays and computer technology to make horizontal, or axial, images of the body. A CT scan shows detailed images of any part of the body, including the bones, muscles, fat, and organs. CT scans are more detailed than general X-rays.
Arthroscopy. A minimally-invasive diagnostic and treatment procedure used for conditions of a joint. This procedure uses a small, lighted, optic tube , which is inserted into the joint through a small incision in the joint. Images of the inside of the joint are projected onto a screen used to evaluate any degenerative or arthritic changes in the joint to detect bone diseases and tumors to determine the cause of bone pain and inflammation.
Radionuclide bone scan. A nuclear imaging technique that uses a very small amount of radioactive material, which is injected into the patient’s bloodstream to be detected by a scanner. This test shows blood flow to the bone and cell activity within the bone.
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Key Points About Iliotibial Band Syndrome
- Iliotibial band syndrome causes pain on the outside of your knee.
- It often happens in athletes, especially distance runners. But anyone can get it.
- Using incorrect sporting equipment and having a poor running stance may increase your chance of having this condition.
- Most people respond to treatment such as pain medicines, ice, stretching, and strengthening exercises, and limiting the activity for a while.
- Some people may need surgery to treat the condition.
How Is Knee Pain On The Outside Of The Knee Diagnosed
When you see a doctor about lateral knee pain, theyll first ask you to describe the location and type of pain, for example is the pain sharp or aching? Theyll also ask you when the pain started and what activity you were doing when your symptoms began.
Theyll then perform a physical examination that will typically involve extending and flexing your knee, as well as moving it gently from side to side. This may reveal whether theres any swelling, areas of tenderness, or looseness in any of the ligaments.
Imaging tests may also be appropriate, including one or more of the following:
- X-ray to see bones
- Magnetic resonance imaging to get detailed images of ligaments, tendons, muscles, and cartilage
- Computed tomography scan provides a more detailed image of the bone than is possible with a standard X-ray
Based on your symptoms, the physical exam and imaging, a doctor should be able to diagnose the cause and severity of your knee injury and propose a treatment plan.
For minor lateral knee injuries, rest and conservative measures are all that are needed to allow them to heal. However, ligament tears, meniscus tears, and advanced arthritis may require surgery.
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What Can You Do For Pain In Hips And Knees
The first recommendation I make, if the pain is not chronic, is to exercise correctly. The saying No Pain, No Gain, does not hold true when it comes to hip and knee pain. Especially if the pain comes from arthritis. Switching to a low-impact exercise, like a stationary bike, stair stepper, rowing machine, or yoga are great options. Swimming is an excellent exercise that doesnt place weight on your hips and knees.
Sometimes the answer can be as simple as an orthotic insert in your shoe to help distribute weight away from your arthritic joint. Other non-intrusive solutions include oral anti-inflammatories, such as Tylenol or Motrin. Braces can also be helpful. In many cases, pain can also be controlled through corticosteroid or lubricant injections. Physical therapy can greatly improve the range of motion and strengthen the muscles around the joint to take pressure off of the joint.
You are in good hands with the surgeons of JOI. You can consult with your MD to see which procedure is the best option for YOU!
What Other Symptoms Might Occur With Behind Knee Pain
Behind knee pain often occurs along with other symptoms that vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. These symptoms include swelling or , inflammation and redness, soreness, or . If you are experiencing other symptoms along with your behind knee pain, be sure to tell your health care provider. This additional information can help your doctor make a diagnosis.
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What Is Causing The Pain On The Side Of My Knee
Knee pain is increasingly becoming a very common ailment in todays fast-paced and demanding living conditions. The knees support our entire body weight, and due to their complex structure and mechanics, they are prone to a number of ailments and injuries.
Pain or swelling in the knees can cause great discomfort, and can totally disrupt ones day-to-day activities. Side knee pain can result from a variety of reasons, depending upon the individuals age, lifestyle, and activity factors.