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What Causes Sudden Knee Joint Pain

Causes Of Inner Knee Pain

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There is no single cause, but there are several reasons why you may have inner knee pain. Its more common in:

  • footballers, skiers, rugby players and those who play sports
  • other activities that involve sudden twisting or pivoting of the knees
  • those who suddenly increase the amount of activity they normally do
  • activities that result in over-use of the knee, such as cycling or swimming breaststroke
  • older people, due to falls or arthritis

Accompanying Symptoms Of Sudden Knee Pain

In the list above, we describe specific symptoms of issues that commonly cause sudden knee pain. But in general, one or more of the following tend to accompany this pain:

  • swelling
  • a clicking sound with the pain
  • pain when rising after sitting
  • pain climbing the stairs
  • the knee locking or not bending
  • the knee giving way

The exact location of the pain can help identify the cause and the best way to treat it. For example, pain between the kneecap and the shin can be a sign of a repetitive use injury, such as from running.

What Is Pain Behind The Knee

Since the knee is the largest and most complex joint in the body, it makes sense that it might hurt sometimes. Although knee pain is a common complaint, it is less common behind the knee.

Pain in the back of the knee is called posterior knee pain, and it can have a variety of causes. Occasionally, posterior knee pain is “referred” from the front of the knee or the spine.

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Sudden Joint Pain Causes And How To Treat It

Many types of joint pain associated with arthritis are slow to develop and get worse over time if an effective treatment strategy is not in place. However, other types of joint pain occur unexpectedly and are a major cause of concern among people who dont normally experience painful joints.

Here is some information about sudden joint pain all over, including what it feels like, sudden joint pain causes, and how to treat the pain when it strikes without warning.

Well address the areas of the body where sudden severe joint pain is commonly felt and when it may be time to consult a doctor about the joint pain symptoms.

Severe Pain With Obvious Deformity

Physical Therapist

If severe knee pain is accompanied by an obvious deformity there is most likely a fracture or dislocation on one of the knee bones. If this is the case, you will usually be able to pinpoint the time it happened there will have been a fairly major trauma such as a fall, hard tackle or RTA, and you will have excruciating knee pain. Bones dont just break or dislocate without you knowing it.

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Osteonecrosis Of The Knee

Osteonecrosis is a condition in which bone tissue dies due to a lack of adequate blood supply. People typically notice severe pain on the inside of the knee with tenderness and joint swelling as well as pain when bending or straightening the knee. These symptoms may cause a person to limp when walking.

Osteonecrosis in the knee is not common. It is most likely to occur after an injury, but it can also develop gradually in absence of a trauma. Older women who have osteoporosis are at the greatest risk for osteonecrosis.

Causes And Symptoms Of Knee Pains

Being the largest joint of the human body, the knee causes many different types of pains amongst all age groups. A few identified causes can include unexpected injury, overuse injury, or an underlying medical illness. The femur , fibula and Tibia holds the knee joint in place. Bone structures found in or around the knee joint comprises of discs , cartilage, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. General symptoms that may cause knee pain comprises of swelling, stiffness, redness, warmth, weakness, instability, popping or crunching noises, fever, and decreased the range of motion .

So here are the 10 most common origins for knee pain:

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How Is Infectious Arthritis Diagnosed

Your doctor will examine your joint and ask you questions about your symptoms. If they suspect you have infectious arthritis, they may order additional tests.

An arthrocentesis is a test frequently used to diagnose this condition. It involves inserting a needle into the affected joint to take a sample of synovial fluid. The sample is sent to the lab to be examined for color, consistency, and the presence of white blood cells and bacteria. The information from this test can tell your doctor if you have an infection in the joint and what is causing the infection.

Your doctor may also take a blood sample from you. This is another way to check your white blood cell count and to determine if any bacteria are present in your bloodstream. This information can help your doctor determine the severity of the infection.

Imaging tests may also be ordered to confirm the presence of infection. These tests can also help your doctor see if your joint has been damaged by the infection. Imaging tests used for infectious arthritis include:

  • X-rays

Causes Of Pain Behind The Knee

Sudden Joint Pain Causes and What You Can Do About It

Pain behind the knee can be simple or difficult to diagnose, depending upon the cause. Here are some of the most common causes of posterior knee pain:

Baker’s cyst

A lump-like swelling behind the knee is characteristic of Baker’s cyst, making it fairly easy to diagnose. This type of cyst is also called a popliteal cyst because it is located in the popliteal fossa, a small hollow at the back of the knee.

It forms when synovial fluid gathers at the back of the knee. Injury or stress from arthritis can trigger the accumulation of fluid.

Different forms of arthritis

Arthritis is the generic name given to diseases that affect the joint. Arthritis can cause pain anywhere in the knee joint, including the back.

Knee pain is most often associated with osteoarthritis, the type that is related to aging or overuse. Knee pain can also occur with rheumatoid arthritis, but it will occur in both knees at once.

Gout is a type of arthritis that first attacks the big toe, but later attacks may strike the knees. Septic or infectious arthritis is caused by an infection that lodges in a joint, usually a knee.


Besides infection in the knee joint , posterior knee pain could result from several other infections, including:

  • Infection in the bone
  • Infection of one of the fluid-filled sacs called bursae

These infections have different causes and symptoms, although pain, redness, heat, and swelling are typical of most infections.



Deep vein thrombosis

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Rheumatoid Arthritis Of The Knee

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition that causes the tissue around the joint to become inflamed and thickened. Chronic inflammation often leads to damage and loss of cartilage.

Rheumatoid arthritis occurs in about 0.6 percent of the U.S. population and is two to three times more common in women.

Symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis are similar to other types of arthritis in the knee:

  • stiffness

How To Treat Sudden Severe Joint Pain

To help treat sudden severe joint pain, try applying fast-acting JointFlex to the site of pain for immediate and long-lasting relief. It may help to increase physical activity after the sudden joint pain begins to stretch and mobilize the joints.4 Consuming more omega-3 fatty acids and getting a massage may help with the sudden pain as well. 12,13 If your sudden joint pain is severe, or youre unsure of the cause, seek medical attention.

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Injured Knees Continue Degenerating If Untreated

Often when the cause of bad knee pain is left untreated it can lead to further injury and serious complications.

Your knee may swell, become unstable, lock up, and/or develop a deformity. Unbearable knee pain will not go away until you finally seek treatment. By then, the damage could be much worse and treatment options more limited.

Whether the cause of your severe knee pain is an injury or progressive disease, dont put off getting a medical diagnosis. Find out what is causing your pain and get the relief you need now.

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What Does Knee Pain Feel Like

Knee Pain

Knee pain can take many different forms. You might experience burning knee pain at night as an uncomfortable, steady warmth in the joint. You may also have throbbing knee pain at night, no matter what position you lie in.

Some people have pain that is sharp when they switch positions after being still. Other forms are not pain at all but can consist of tenderness or swelling inside the joint.

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How To Relieve Knee Pain At Night

When you finally lay yourself down to sleep after a busy day, the last thing you want to experience is pain that keeps you awake. When knee pain at night sends you tossing and turning, though, there are ways to care for yourself during the day to make it better. Heres your guide to managing and preventing knee pain at night.

What Causes Sudden Joint Pain

Youre out and about, your body feels great from head to toe, and then seemingly out of nowhere lightning strikes. Or, at least it feels that way. Sudden joint pain can not only ruin your day, but become a cause for concern, especially if youve never experienced it before.

Unlike arthritis, which tends to worsen gradually over time, sudden joint pain can seemingly happen out of nowhere. It can affect one joint or all of them, and is often described as sharp and acute. But if you havent noticed anything starting to ache a little or knowingly injured yourself, where could the pain be coming from?

Heres a look at some of the most common causes of sudden joint pain, how to treat them, and when to see a doctor.

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Treating Knee Pain From Arthritis

Knee pain usually becomes worse as arthritis progresses. Many people with severe pain from arthritis choose to have surgery to relieve their symptoms and help repair the joint.

But surgery isnt right for everyone. Some of the more conservative options for treating knee pain from arthritis include medication and at-home strategies like exercise.

The exact treatment plan thats recommended for your knee pain will depend on factors such as severity of your pain, your age, your activity levels, and any other medical conditions you have.

Typically, your doctor will try the least invasive type of treatment, such as weight loss and medication, and then move down the line to consider surgery.

Because there are many considerations before turning to surgery, its crucial to discuss and explore all treatment options with your doctor.

When Should I See A Doctor For Knee Pain At Night

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In the days after knee replacement surgery or another type of injury, it is normal to expect a little pain at night. A few nights of lost sleep are not anything to worry about.

However, there are times when you should see a doctor for knee pain at night. Schedule a regular appointment if you experience the following symptoms:

  • Unusual or significant swelling

There are also symptoms that warrant emergency treatment for knee pain. These include:

  • Deformed appearance of the joint
  • Pain that makes weight-bearing impossible
  • Injury that causes your knee to make a popping sound
  • Swelling that occurs suddenly

If your knee pain at night consistently interferes with sleep it could make pain during the day worse, too. When it comes to knee replacement surgery, poor sleep can also slow healing times. If pain is steady for three or four days, or intermittent for a week or two, best to schedule a follow-up with your doctor.

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Alternative Treatment For Knee Pain

Normally, knee pain can be treated with anti-inflammatories prescribed by the orthopaedist, such as Diclofenaco or Ibuprofen, or surgery for replacement of damaged portions of the knee. However, an alternative treatment for knee pain can be adopted, especially by who has an anti-inflammatory sensitive stomach and includes:

  • Homeopathy: use of homeopathic remedies, such as Reumamed or Homeoflan, prescribed by the orthopaedist, to treat inflammation of the knee caused by arthritis or tendinitis, for example
  • Acupuncture: this technique can help with arthritis-related knee pain relief, osteoarthtrose or traumas, for example
  • Compresses: put up hot compresses with 3 drops of essential oil from sage or rosemary 2 times a day, from the 3º day of emergence of the symptoms
  • Relanding of the knee: it consists of banding the knee, mainly when it is necessary to stay long standing.

In addition, one must avoid running or walking whenever the pain in the knee is present, not to take in weight and sit in high chairs, to not force the knees by lifting.

The alternative treatment for pain in the knee should not replace the treatment indicated by the doctor, as it may worsen the problem that caused the pain in the knee.

What Does A Knee Injury Feel Like

Obviously, it hurts! But the type of pain and where you feel it can vary, depending on what the problem is. You may have:

  • Pain, usually when you bend or straighten the knee
  • Swelling
  • Trouble putting weight on the knee
  • Problems moving your knee
  • Knee buckling or âlockingâ

If you have these symptoms, see your doctor. They will check your knee. You may also need X-rays or an MRI to see more detail of the joint.

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What Is The Treatment For Knee Pain

Treatments for knee pain are as varied as the conditions that can cause the pain.


Medications might be prescribed to treat an underlying medical condition or for pain relief.

If you are taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory pain medications regularly for your knee pain, you should see your doctor to be evaluated.

Physical therapy

Sometimes physical therapy sessions to strengthen the muscles around the knee will make it more stable and help guarantee the best mechanical movements. Working with a physical therapist can help avoid injuries or further worsening of an injury.


Injecting medications directly into your knee might help in certain situations. The two most common injections are corticosteroids and lubricants. Corticosteroid injections can help arthritis and other inflammations of the knee. They usually need to be repeated every few months. Lubricants that are similar to the fluid already in your knee joint can help with movement and pain.

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Injury To The Meniscus

10 Common Causes of Knee Pain

The pain in the knee by bending the leg, pain in the inner part of the knee, pain climbing up the ladder, pain to the agachar or pain inside the knee, for example, can be indicative of injury to the meniscus that is a disc that works like a cushion or damper inside the knee. Generally, injuries to the meniscus are caused by physical activities such as judo, jiu-jitsu, or by natural degeneration, which is the aging of the meniscus and which can start at around 40 years of age.

What to do: must do rest and avoid activities that move a lot of the knee, plus physiotherapy to strengthen the musculature of the knee. In some cases, the doctor can also make corticoid injections or hyaluronic acid in the knee. In the most serious cases the surgery can be indicated.

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What Causes Knee Pain In Young Adults

Knee pain in your 20s is often associated with overuse injuries. When the muscles, ligaments or tendons are overworked, pain, stiffness and other symptoms can develop pretty quickly. Tendonitis and bursitis are a couple of overuse injuries that are most commonly associated with strenuous activity. But they can also occur in relatively inactive people who ramp up their activity too quickly. Still, while these types of injuries are fairly common in young adults, theyre not the only causes of knee pain.

Burning Pain In Knee When Kneeling

Many people immediately believe they have knee arthritis when they feel pain as they kneel. However, sharp burning pain in knee areas when kneeling does not mean you have to acquiesce to a lifetime of painful arthritis.

Sharp, burning pain in your knee might just mean you have sore muscles.

Picture the anatomy of your knee. The thigh muscles and lower-leg muscles are both attached to your patella or knee cap with tendons.

When you strain your muscles, they fill up with lactic acid, giving them that painful tight sensation after you exercise. Tight muscles d not flex. So as you attempt to flex your knee and muscles do not respond with proper stretching, you may feel a burning sensation in your knees.

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The Following Measures Can Be Taken To Ease The Pain At Home:

Icing with an ice pack or directly with the ice. This helps in reducing the pain and swelling. After few days of the injury or after any activity that causes knee pain, use ice, a cold gel pack, a bag of frozen vegetables on the affected areas for 15 minutes with a 1-2-hour gap in between every application. Do not directly use them, instead cover the ice or ice pack with a cloth or towel and then put it on the affected knee. To reduce the swelling, perform this remedy while keeping your leg raised above the heart level. Rest for a while and reduce the movements that may enhance the pain in the knee. Forget about squat, too much kneeling and running for some days. Do not use exercise machines like stair-steppers and rowing machines, instead go for a walk or swimming. Pain killers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen may give relief in the painful condition of the knee joint.


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