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Why My Knee Hurts When I Bend It

Coping Strategies For Runners With Anterior Knee Pain:

Why Is My Knee In Pain When Bending It?
  • A shorter stride: a shorter stride allows you to control your pelvic drop better.
  • A higher cadence : This also minimizes your pelvic drop and other gait abnormalities.
  • Avoiding hilly terrain until the pain has lessened.
  • Progressive, intelligent training. Consider using apps such as HRV4Training, Training Peaks or TrainAsOne.
  • Patella taping: See the video at the end of this post.
  • Orthotics or shoe inserts: These have been shown to work in some of you.
  • Prevention: Keep your glutes/ hip abductors / core strong. See the exercise videos at the end of this post.

What Can You Do For The Pain

Your plan will depend on your specific injury. Mild to moderate issues will often get better on their own. To speed the healing, you can:

  • Rest your knee. Take a few days off from intense activity.
  • Ice it to curb pain and swelling. Do it for 15 to 20 minutes every 3 to 4 hours. Keep doing it for 2 to 3 days or until the pain is gone.
  • Compress your knee. Use an elastic bandage, straps, or sleeves to wrap the joint. It will keep down swelling or add support.
  • Elevate your knee with a pillow under your heel when you’re sitting or lying down to cut down on swelling.
  • Take anti-inflammatorymedications. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen will help with pain and swelling. Follow the instructions on the label. These drugs can have side effects, so you should only use them now and then unless your doctor says otherwise.
  • Practice stretching and strengthening exercises if your doctor recommends them. You may want to do physical therapy, too.

Make an appointment with a doctor if you still have pain after 2 weeks of home treatment, if the knee becomes warm, or if you have fever along with a painful, swollen knee.

Some people with knee pain need more help. For instance, if you have bursitis, your doctor may need to draw out extra fluid from the bursa in your knee. If you have arthritis, you may need an occasional corticosteroid shot to settle down inflammation. And if you have a torn ligament or certain knee injuries, you may need surgery.

When Do I See A Doctor

If you have unexplained cold knees, you should see a doctor. This means that if you feel a cold sensation on your knees but do not know why you feel this, make an appointment.

Cold knees can result from a variety of illnesses and even infections. A doctor’s visit could lead to instant relief. It could also lead to a more serious diagnosis and overall cure for your problems.

If your knees ache when cold, you can mitigate the pain in a few different ways.

Keep Warm

If exposure to cold causes your knee pain, it only makes sense then to try to keep those joints warm. Take a warm shower or bath, and use an electric mattress pad or electric blanket to stay warm at night.

Dress warm if you’re going to spend some time outside. Layers are your friend in cold weather, so use them. Begin with a base layer of long underwear or tights under your clothes to keep the heat in.

Then use warmer, thick, windproof outerwear.

Lose Weight

Extra weight can cause undue stress on your joints. If you lose weight, your joints will have less stress and you will experience less joint pain. Your knees may still ache a bit in the cold weather, but they will not hurt as much as when you were carrying around extra weight.

Ease Into And Out of Movement

If you’re exercising outside do not just start running. Do some warm-up exercises in the warm indoors before you head outside and exercise.

Stay Hydrated

Lube Up

Beef Up

Get Colder

Eat Smart

Stay Inside

See a Doctor

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Other Causes Of Knee Pain When Bending

Other less common causes of knee pain when bending include:

  • Patellar Tendonitis:Inflammation and micro-tears in the patellar tendon just below the kneecap, usually after prolonged jumping or kicking movements resulting in bending knee pain. The most defining feature of patellar tendonitis is that it is painful if you press on the tendon
  • Iliotibial Band Syndrome : Irritation and inflammation of a thick fibrous band on the outer side of the thigh and knee. It usually develops from overuse and most frequently affects runners. Sending bending knee pain from ITBS tends to be on the outer side of the knee and there may be a popping/grinding sensation as you bend the knee
  • Osgood Schlatters: A common cause of bending knee pain in teenagers usually associated with sudden growth spurts where the bones grow quicker than the soft tissues leading to excessive tension through the patellar tendon which damages the underlying bone.
  • What Is Hamstring Tendonitis

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    The hamstring muscle group includes two inner, or medial, muscles. These muscles are known as the semitendinosus and semimembranosus. Theres also an outer, or lateral, muscle the bicep femoris. Tendons, a type of connective tissue, attach these muscles to the pelvis, knee, and shinbones, and allow the knee to flex and the hip to extend.

    When hamstring tendons are overused or misused, tiny tears occur, causing inflammation and pain.

    Cases of hamstring tendonitis can be lateral or medial depending on the muscles involved. They can also be described as distal, involving the tendons around the:

    • knee
    • back thigh
    • calf

    Tendon inflammation is technically called tendinitis, but popular use of tendonitis has made the terms interchangeable. Tendonitis is often confused with tendinosis, a chronic condition caused by repetitive overuse or injury.

    The most common symptoms of hamstring tendonitis include:

    • sharp, burning pain

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    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 knee injury
    • a benign or cancerous growth
    • an infection

    You can access a range of treatments on a pay as you go basis, including physiotherapy. Find out more about physiotherapy >

    Getting Rid Of Your Knee Pain

    If you are lucky, your knee pain may get better on its own with rest. However, more than likely you will need to engage in rehab exercises to overcome the injury. Physiotherapists specialize in providing specific exercises and treatment regimes that increase the strength, stability, and mobility of your joint.

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    Two Serious Reasons Why Your Knee Feels Tight When Bending

    Understanding the anatomy of the knee would naturally come to anyone going through chronic pain, swelling or tightness in the major joints. But it doesnt need for the knee problems to manifest before you take the necessary precautions to ensure your joints remain healthy. There are conditions that pave the way for the problems such as osteoarthritis and meniscal tear to arise. You can prevent them simply by knowing the reasons that cause these joint problems to come about to guide you in reversing the symptoms.

    Reasons Why Your Knee Feels Tight When Bending Could Be Osteoarthritis

  • If you are an elderly person or someone who is exposed to high levels of physical activity, you are at a higher risk of having osteoarthritis. This is a condition thats borne from overuse and old age. The common symptoms of osteoarthritis include degeneration in the cartilage, the knee feels tight when bending and physical manifestations of swelling.
  • If you have had an acute injury or have undergone some knee trauma, the usual effect is a damaged or torn articular cartilage. As the affected knee heals and produce new cartilage, the new bone spurs or bone growths that come out as irregular can cause alignment issues and restrict certain movements. The knee feels tight when bending and causes chronic pain.
  • Reasons Why Your Knee Feels Tight When Bending Could Be Meniscal Tear

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    Recovery Time And Immediate Treatment Exercises

    How to Help Knee Pain when Bending, Sitting, Standing or Walking if you’re Overweight

    When injured tissues are forced into use too soon they often dont entirely recover. Weakened tendons are far more likely to become reinjured. The more times the same tissue is damaged, the greater the chances of developing long-term damage.

    It generally takes people several days to start to feel major relief, and six weeks or more to feel entirely better.

    Avoid anything that activates the tendon for the first 48 hours. After that, exercises should only be done if they dont cause additional pain.

    In the first week after injury you can start reintroducing slow, steady movements that focus on maintaining general strength. A good starting exercise is isometric knee flexes, where the injured hamstring is placed over the opposite leg and contracted at 30, 60, and 90-degree angles, as comfortable.

    Its usually safe to begin range of motion, lengthening, and strengthening exercises after a week or so. An easy starting point is a single leg windmill. To do this exercise:

  • Rest the uninjured leg on a chair while keeping the other straight.
  • Reach downward with a flat back.
  • Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
  • You can add handheld weights to make the stretch more difficult.

    The Nordic hamstring exercise is another useful stretch:

  • Kneel and bend forward as far as comfortable with a neutral hip.
  • Have a helper restrain your feet.
  • Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
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    Brief Anatomy Of The Knee

    The knee is a vulnerable joint that bears a great deal of stress from everyday activities, such as lifting and kneeling, and from high-impact activities, such as jogging and aerobics.

    The knee is formed by the following parts:

    • Tibia. This is the shin bone or larger bone of the lower leg.

    • Femur. This is the thighbone or upper leg bone.

    • Patella. This is the kneecap.

    Each bone end is covered with a layer of cartilage that absorbs shock and protects the knee. Basically, the knee is 2 long leg bones held together by muscles, ligaments, and tendons.

    There are 2 groups of muscles involved in the knee, including the quadriceps muscles , which straighten the legs, and the hamstring muscles , which bend the leg at the knee.

    Tendons are tough cords of tissue that connect muscles to bones. Ligaments are elastic bands of tissue that connect bone to bone. Some ligaments on the knee provide stability and protection of the joints, while other ligaments limit forward and backward movement of the tibia .

    Treating Knee Pain When Bending

    Conditions that result in knee pain when bending may be initially treated at home with rest/ice/compression/elevation and self-care. However, more severe injuries or arthritis will require a comprehensive evaluation with one of The Orthopaedic Institutes specialty physicians. Request your appointment online today or call 309-1437 to begin your comprehensive diagnosis and treatment plan. We are here to help get rid of your knee pain, and get you back to having fun and enjoying your activities again!

    Dr. Duke is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon who specializes in adult reconstructive surgery, total and partial knee resurfacing, anterior lateral approach total hip replacement, knee arthroscopy and sports medicine.

    Dr. Duke became an orthopedic surgeon because he was mentored by a wonderful hometown orthopedic surgeon who allowed him to observe surgery. As he went through his medical school rotations, Dr. Duke was drawn to orthopedics and felt that it was the best specialty for him to utilize his talents in caring for patients.

    What sets Dr. Duke apart is how he listens and communicates. He treats all of his patients like family. Dr. Duke has practiced medicine in the same location for 28 years and has performed over 10,000 total joint replacements. He and his caring staff want the absolute best for their patients.

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    What Causes Pfp Syndrome

    Patellofemoral pain syndrome is an overuse disorder. These happen when someone does the same movements that stress the knee over and over again.

    In PFP syndrome, repeated bending and straightening the knee stresses the kneecap. It’s most common in athletes.

    Some people with PFP syndrome have a kneecap that is out of line with the thighbone . The kneecap can get out of line, or wiggle as it moves along the thighbone, because of muscle weakness, trauma, or another problem. If this happens, the kneecap doesn’t glide smoothly over the thighbone when the knee bends and straightens. The kneecap gets injured and this causes the pain of PFP syndrome.

    Who Gets Pfp Syndrome

    Why does it hurt to bend my knees?

    Patellofemoral pain syndrome usually happens in people who do sports that involve a lot of knee bending and straightening, such as running, biking, and skiing. It also can happen to people, particularly young women, who do not do a lot of sports.

    PFP syndrome is more common in women and happens most often to teens and young adults.

    Tight or weak leg muscles or flat feet can make someone more likely to get PFP syndrome.

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    Potential Reasons Your Knee Hurts When Straight But Not When Bent

    When you have knee pain when your leg is straight, it is usually related to one of the following:

    • Patellofemoral pain syndrome More commonly known as runners knee, this condition develops when the kneecap shifts out of its natural position. This can occur as the result of misalignment of the patellar groove, which is the track of tendons that keep the kneecap in its right place. Tension or weakness in the tendons can cause the misalignment, or it may be the result of a traumatic injury.When you have runners knee, it can be difficult to straighten the knee without pain.
    • Patellar tendinitis More commonly known as jumpers knee, this condition is the result of irritation and inflammation along the patellar tendon. The patellar tendon connects the bottom of your kneecap to the top of your shinbone. Frequent physical activities, especially those that involve jumping, can exert great amounts of force on the knee, which causes pain when trying to straighten the knee.

    If you suspect you have knee pain from one of these conditions, please dont hesitate to reach out to a health care professional for assistance.

    Knee Crackles When Bending

    Have you ever been surprised when your knee crackles? Maybe you were stretching at the time or just standing up after a long time sitting. Perhaps you were climbing stairs or walking down the street. No matter the case, you may be wondering why it happens and if there is anything you can do to prevent it. You might also be asking yourself if it is something you need to worry about or it is just a part of life.

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    Preventing Pain Above Your Knee

    Many causes of pain above your knee can be prevented by proper stretching before exercise and preventing overexertion or poor form during physical activity.

    Other causes like arthritis or knee bursitis are not as easily preventable. However, your doctor or other healthcare provider may have recommendations for relieving symptoms and preventing further injury.

    What You Need To Know

    Why Does My Knee Cap Hurt & How Do I Fix This? (5 minute in-home routine included!)
    • 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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    Painful Knee: Where Does It Hurt

    The exact location of your knee pain is an indicator of the cause. Your doctor will ask you to describe in detail the exact location and type of pain you experience in the knee. This can help the doctor determine the type of condition or injury responsible for your symptoms. Below are some possible causes of knee pain.

    Patellar Tendonitis Usually, pain in the front of the knee is caused by a problem with the patellar tendon. Patellar tendonitis is a type of overuse injury. Running, jumping, a sudden increase in the intensity of an activity, muscular tightness, and imbalance can contribute to this injury. With this condition, it can hurt to bend the knee, kneel, and squat.

    Iliotibial Band Syndrome Pain on the outside or lateral side of the knee usually indicates a problem with the iliotibial band or the lateral meniscus . Iliotibial band syndrome is common in long-distance runners, as well as cyclists and rock climbers. The repetitive bending of the knee can lead to this condition. Meniscus tears, on the other hand, are caused by sudden twisting movements of the knee, which is common in basketball, football, soccer, and tennis players.

    Other Causes Pain in the back of the knee could mean different things: a cartilage injury, a ligament injury, a hamstring injury, Bakerâs cyst , and arthritis. There are many possible causes of pain in the back of the knee, which is why it should be evaluated by an experienced medical professional.

    There Is No Easy Surgical Solution For Anterior Knee Pain

    The mere fact that there are likely to be ten or more described surgical techniques to try and treat pain in the front of your knee should give you pause. That usually means that none have been very successful, so we keep trying new ones. Surgery for anterior knee pain has not been proven to be more effective than a proper exercise program.

    Drilling:

    Some procedures have drilled holes into the patella, thinking that excess pressure may have been the cause of pain. Did it work for some people? Maybe but with that pesky placebo thing, we always hear about, we dont know because this procedure was never tested against control or sham. Besides having holes drilled through your patella might cause it to break if you fall on it or if you are hit in front of your knee.

    Burning:

    One prolific Spanish author wrote about burning the tissues around the patella. We call that a denervation procedure. Thats because when you heat the tissues, you will fry the nerves to that region. The thought behind this procedure was that the patella is fed by nerves that could easily be burned using an arthroscopic approach. This procedure was also never evaluated against a control group or a sham group- so we just dont know if it works.

    Cutting:

    Moving:

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