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What Are Different Types Of Knee Injuries

How Are Cruciate Ligaments Injured

Common Types of Knee Pain

The anterior cruciate ligament is one of the most common ligaments to be injured. The ACL is often stretched and/or torn during a sudden twisting motion . Skiing, basketball, and football are sports that have a higher risk of ACL injuries.

The posterior cruciate ligament is also a common ligament to become injured in the knee. However, the PCL injury usually occurs with sudden, direct impact, such as in a car accident or during a football tackle.

What Exercises Are Recommended And What Exercises Should Be Avoided During Rehabilitation For A Knee Injury

During physical therapy for rehabilitation of a knee injury, the patient will be given specific exercises by the physical therapist in order to strengthen and stabilize the knee joint. These exercises include strengthening the front of the thigh , back of the thigh , calf, and hip. Consult your doctor and your physical therapist before starting any exercise program. Your physical therapist should insure you perform the exercises properly before doing them on your own.

If you have any pain or discomfort while doing prescribed exercises, see your doctor or physical therapist.

Some exercises your physical therapist may recommend include the following:

  • Quad sets
  • Straight-leg raise to the front
  • Straight-leg raise to the back
  • Hamstring curls
  • Heel dig bridging
  • Shallow standing knee bends
  • The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons has an exercise guide that includes directions and pictures. Consult your doctor or physical therapist before trying any of these exercises on your own.

    Some exercises to avoid following knee injury include the following:

    • Full-arc knee extensions

    These exercises can further stress already damaged knee joints.

    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.

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    Type #: Ligament Injuries

    Torn ligaments fall under the acute knee injuries category. ACL injury is a common sports-related injury caused by a sudden change in direction. All other ligaments medial collateral ligament, lateral collateral ligament and posterior cruciate ligament are not as prone to injuries.

    Although ligaments are strong, you can stretch or tear them. This leads to other types of sprains. A ligament tear is normally caused by the application of extreme force on a joint. This may be due to a fall or any other high-impact event. Most ligament tears occur to the wrist, back, knee, or thumb.

    Common Knee Injuries And Their Symptoms

    Knee Injuries: What Are The Different Types Of Knee Injuries

    If youve never experienced knee pain before, then you probably take the largest joint in your body for granted at times. But anyone who has ever experienced knee pain knows just how big a problem it can be, and about the major disruptions it can cause to everyday life.

    The knee supports nearly the entire weight of the human body, and for that reason it is fortunate that it is the largest joint in the body. However, there are still many common problems to the knee, and even minor issues can substantially impact someones quality of life by limiting mobility.

    In this first posting for our new sports medicine blog, we here at the Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Institute want to take a look at five very common problems that often arise in the knee, as well as the symptoms that accompany these problems.

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    Treatment For The Different Types Of Knee Injuries

    The types of knee injuries mentioned above are among the most common knee injuries, but there are certainly others that can be experienced too. Depending on the type of knee injury someone has, many common problems can be overcome by bracing the knee alongside, or instead of, surgery. The option that people can take depends on the level and extent of the injury and the resultant disability.

    For sports people and those whose work involves high levels of activity, surgery is usually recommended. After this, a brace can be worn to support the weakened knee as it heals. Even if you do not undergo surgery, and your career and leisure activities do not depend upon having a perfect knee joint, bracing is commonly used to provide additional support and minimise the risk of further injury.

    There are different knee braces for different knee injuries, and its about finding the right knee brace for you. Some of the knee braces that we can provide are as follows:

    The CTi® Custom Knee Brace is the gold standard brace, endorsed by leading surgeons and experts in knee rehabilitation. Its designed to support any damage sustained to all ligaments whilst also providing extra control for people with rotation and instability issues. Its used by many professional sports people, and is made to measure.

    With all of these braces, professional assessment and fitting are required to ensure that the correct level of control is needed.

    Torn Meniscus Or Tendons

    The meniscus is the lining between the ends of the two long bones that connect at the knee joint. Again, these tears usually happen during sports when the athlete is tackling, twisting or pivoting. However, these tears can also result from aging and arthritis where the meniscus has become weakened. Even simple motions, such as twisting the knee when rising from a chair, can cause the injury. Tendon tears like tears in the tendons that connect the thigh quadriceps muscle or the patellar tendons in the knee can result from falls or other direct forces to the knee.

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    When Will You Use The Knee Brace

    Knee Cartilage Meniscus Injury Explained

    Your activity level also determines the best type of knee brace for you.

    Most knee braces are designed for physical activities. If you’ve had major knee surgery, such as reconstructive knee surgery, then your knee brace has a different purpose.

    A brace like a hinged Bledsoe brace, for example, exists to protect your knee. You wear it all the time rather than just during activity.

    Typical knee braces, though, exist specifically for physical activity. You should plan on taking the brace off at night to give your skin a break. Skin irritation is a common problem when you wear a knee brace, so you should plan on not wearing the brace all the time.

    The more activity you do, the more support you will need. So if you need a brace for light walking or basic mobility, you need a basic sleeve or strap. If you’re planning on summiting a 14-er, then you may want something more substantial.

    A knee brace makes the most difference when you’re on your feet because you bear the most weight on your leg at that time. Engineers design braces to support your knee and keep it in line as you put stress on it.

    If you’ve had an injury, your physical therapist or doctor may already have a brace in mind based on your level of activity. Follow their lead to make sure you fully recover from the injury and get your leg working properly again.

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    Knee Pain Behind The Knee

    Knee pain behind the knee isnt uncommon among active adults, but its important to monitor your symptoms, especially if you have a more sedentary lifestyle. According to Miho Tanaka, MD of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, keep an eye out for numbness of the leg, blood clots, and fever, as these can be signs your knee pain warrants a trip to the ER.

    But dont panic. Blood clots associated with pain behind the knee can be addressed quickly and arent the most common trigger. More likely, pain behind the knee is caused by one of the following factors.

    Common Causes of Pain Behind the Knee

    • Arthritis
    • Strains/cramps in calf or hamstring

    First Aid For Knee Injuries In The First 48 To 72 Hours

    • Stop your activity immediately. Dont work through the pain.
    • Rest the joint at first.
    • Reduce pain, swelling and internal bleeding with icepacks, applied for 15 minutes every couple of hours.
    • Bandage the knee firmly and extend the wrapping down the lower leg.
    • Elevate the injured leg.
    • Dont apply heat to the joint.
    • Avoid alcohol, as this encourages bleeding and swelling.
    • Dont massage the joint, as this encourages bleeding and swelling.

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    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.

    Grades Of Ligament Sprains

    The 3 most common knee injuries in athletes

    Ligament sprains are classified by the following grades:

    • Grade 1: Only mild damage or stretching of the structure is present.
    • Grade 2: Sprains or strains occur after a partial tear to the ligament or tendon.
    • Grade 3: Sprains or strains involve a complete tear and usually lead to the greatest amount of difficulty.

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    What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of A Knee Injury

    The signs and symptoms of a knee injury depend on the cause. Most knee injuries cause pain. A knee injury may also lead to the knee feeling weak, “giving way,” or “locking.” Someone with a knee injury might not be able to fully bend or straighten the knee. The injured knee may be swollen or bruised.

    Knee Pain From Sitting

    If you experience knee pain after sitting for long periods of time, the good news is its probably caused by sitting itself. Particularly for those who have to sit at a desk for work, knee pain can flare up simply because the joints begin to stiffen from lack of movement. Doing this for months or years can weaken the knee joint and even cause premature degeneration. Unless there is an underlying factor such as osteoarthritis or a knee injury, you can probably solve this problem with a little research into the best ergonomic chairs for knees. You can also try taking more breaks or buying a standing desk to keep the blood flowing to your knees during the work day.

    Common Causes of Knee Pain from Sitting

    • Lack of movement/sedentary lifestyle
    • Pre-existing knee injury

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    What Is The Recovery Time For A Knee Injury

    The recovery time for a knee injury depends on the type and severity of the injury. If the injury is significant enough to require surgery and/or physical therapy, the recovery time will be longer.

    Simple strains or sprains can last for one to two weeks. More extensive injuries requiring arthroscopic surgery may take one to three months to heal.

    Major traumatic injuries to the knee may take up to a year to heal.

    Following the doctor’s instructions for rest, immobilization, staying off your feet, and avoiding exercise that aggravates the injuries will help speed recovery.

    Physical therapy can also speed recovery time. It is important to follow directions of your physical therapist to insure you are doing the exercises correctly and attaining the best results.

    Chronic knee injuries that do not require surgery may flare up from time to time. Physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, and cortisone injections are used to provide temporary relief.

    When To Go To The Doctor For Knee Pain

    Decoding Knee Pain: What do Different Types of Pain Mean? – Amy Matthews []

    Make an appointment to see a doctor right away if:

    • You experience pain that significantly limits your range of motion.
    • You cannot fully bend or straighten your leg.
    • Your knee is locked.
    • Your knee pain is accompanied by a fever, redness, and swelling.
    • You have difficulty putting weight on your knee.
    • You have pain with an obvious deformity in the knee joint.
    • Your pain continues for more than two to three weeks.
    • Your pain does not get better or worsens over time.

    University of Utah Health has a walk-in Orthopaedic Injury Clinic with extended weekday hours if you need a same-day appointment and cannot get in to see one of our orthopedic doctors. Providers at the clinic can treat your immediate injury and refer you to an orthopedic specialist for follow-up care.

    Knee pain that is a result of a traumatic injury, such as a collision in sports, a fall, or a vehicle crash, should be treated immediately.

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    Type #: Knee Dislocation Pain

    Pain from a dislocated knee is excruciating. Besides the pain, the knee appears deformed and one may at times not experience any feeling below the knee. Should the knee relocate, it swells from the resulting fluid. With a dislocated knee, every movement of the affected leg is painful.

    A knee dislocation is rare. It often occurs as a result of severe trauma. This includes car crashes, falls and other high-speed, high-impact injuries. A dislocated knee appears angulated or deformed. If it goes back to its original position , there is still significant damage. Although the pain will persist for some time, it will subside with time.

    Type #: Meniscus Injury Knee Pain

    A meniscal tear is a type of knee pain injury caused by the twisting of the knee. The menisci is composed of cartilage and acts as a bone shock absorber. A meniscus injury is a result of a tear in the rubbery knee cartilage, which protects the shinbone. The tear can be a result of a forceful rotation or twisting of the knee.

    Some of the symptoms of knee pain caused by a meniscus injury include difficulty extending the knee, stiffness, and swelling. To treat this type of pain, you need rest, physiotherapy, ice therapy, and pain relievers.

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    Top 6 Types Of Knee Pain And Their Causes

    Before you can treat your knee pain with any hope of not just relief but correction, we need to understand the nature of your pain. To narrow things down, were highlighting the most common types of knee pain. Were covering everything from knee pain at night, to knee pain behind the knee, knee pain when running, etc. Odds are, your knee pain will fit into one of these categories. Remember that most knee pain is ultimately caused by:

    • Aging
    • Injury
    • Repeated stress on the knee

    No one can stop the aging process, but there are steps you can take to minimize your pain by leading a healthy lifestyle. As far as injuries go, be sure to speak with your doctor or chiropractor if you feel any of the below issues are caused by a specific injury.

    And finally, repeated stress on the knee may be due to the nature of your work or your exercise regimen. Be prepared to make a lifestyle change or slight adjustments to your workout in order to better deal with knee pain.

    Unable To Bear Weight

    Knee Injuries

    In some situations, you may be left unable to bear weight through your knee. Often times this is the case after a ligament sprain or a tendon strain.

    Because these structures add stability to the joint and prevent excessive movement, when they are damaged you may experience shifting in the knee or giving way when you try to put pressure on your leg. The severity of the issue may impact how frequently these sensations occur.

    In addition, some types of fractures can also make it very painful to put pressure through your leg. Regardless of the cause, imaging is usually appropriate to determine why bearing weight is so difficult.

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    Fractures Bursa Inflammation And Patellar Injuries


    Fractures of the bones of knee are relatively common. The patella, or kneecap, may fracture due to a fall directly onto it or in car accidents, when the knee is driven into the dashboard. If the bone is displaced , surgery may be required for repair, but if the bone is in good position, a knee immobilizer and watchful waiting may be all that is required.

    The head of the fibula on the lateral side of the knee joint can be fractured either by a direct blow or as part of an injury to the shin or ankle. This bone usually heals with little intervention, but fractures of this bone can have a major complication. The peroneal nerve wraps around the bone and can be damaged by the fracture. This will cause a foot drop, so do not be surprised if the physician examines your foot when you complain of knee problems.

    With jumping injuries, the surface of the tibia can be damaged, resulting in a fracture to the tibial plateau. The mechanism of injury is jumping and landing on a fully extended, straightened knee. Since the femoral condyle sits on the tibial plateau to make the knee joint, it is important that it heals with the most even joint surface as possible to prevent future arthritis and chronic pain. For that reason, after plain X-rays reveal this fracture, a CT scan may be done to make certain that there is no displacement of the bones. This type of fracture may require surgery for repair.

    Bursa Inflammation

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