From the moment you get out of bed each day, you rely on your knees to get you to where you need to go. When you injure one of these major joints, you’re not only in considerable pain, but your ability to perform most minor tasks, such as fetching a glass of water, becomes a challenge.
Given the pressure your knees are under, it’s little wonder that knee injuries are fairly common, especially if you count yourself among the more active population.
Here at Pain Medicine Consultants, our team of board-certified doctors has seen the many ways in which knee pain can develop after an injury. We review the top five here.
Your knee joints are formed by three bones: your tibia (shinbone), your femur (thighbone), and your patella (kneecap). If any of these bones are forced out of position, it falls under the general category of a dislocated knee, which can cause pain and inflammation.
Torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)
If you’re surrounded by athletes, the odds are good that you know at least one person who has torn their ACL. These ligaments crisscross the interior of your knee, and they’re responsible for your joint’s stability, especially when it comes to back-and-forth movement.
In most cases, a torn ACL occurs after twisting or landing badly. The result can leave you with pain, inflammation, and instability in your knee.
In each of your knees, you have two wedge-shaped pieces of cartilage that provide cushioning between your shinbone and thighbone. If you overstress these soft tissues or tear them during an acute twist or trauma, you can be left with mild to moderate knee pain.
When it comes to fractures in your knee, the most common type occurs in your kneecap, which is designed to protect the joint. If your patella sustains a direct hit, it can break, which can lead to significant knee pain.
Your tendons are the soft tissues that connect bone to muscle. Each of your knees features two major tendons:
- Quadriceps tendon, which connects the muscles in your thigh to your kneecap
- Patellar tendon, which connects your kneecap to your shinbone
If you tear one of these tendons, either partially or fully, you can experience pain, as well as limited movement.
Treating your knee pain
As pain management specialists, our goal is to remedy your knee pain, while also treating the underlying problem. After an extensive evaluation of your knee injury, we tailor a plan to meet your needs, which may include:
- Anti-inflammatory medications
- Corticosteroid injections
- Physical therapy
- Stem cell therapy
- Platelet-rich plasma therapy
If we feel that the damage in your knee warrants surgical intervention, we may also recommend this option.
If you’re struggling with knee pain, please contact one of our locations in Pleasant Hill, Pleasanton, or Corte Madera, California, so that we can get you back on your feet.