Causes of knee pain and effective treatment of the disease

Knee pain picture 1

Knee pain is one of the most common symptoms patients turn to orthopedists and other specialists. Many people completely ignore the appearance of unpleasant feelings, believing them to be age-related and almost natural. But knee pain has many prerequisites because of its complex structure and is affected by many external and internal damaging factors. Some illnesses are serious and require emergency treatment.

Who is more prone to knee injuries?

The knee is made up of several bones that are connected by muscles, ligaments, and tendons. There are also 5 synovial bags - cavities surrounded by membranes designed to protect the joint. Between the skeletal joints is the interarticular cartilage - the meniscus, which helps the knee move freely. Violation of work on even one part of the knee joint can lead to unpleasant symptoms.

People with flat feet, in particular, often experience knee pain. It is a foot lesion that destroys the shock absorbing ability of the extremities. With age, the increased load on joints can lead to their destruction and the development of inflammation - a pain syndrome. Similar consequences have various types of deformation of the feet and lower legs.

Knee pain occurs more frequently due to several factors:

  • overweight;
  • passive lifestyle;
  • high exercise load;
  • diabetes;
  • vascular disease;
  • old age;
  • Knee surgery and injuries;
  • Increase leg load.
knee pain check

The causes and treatments of knee pain vary widely, as does the severity of the sensation. If the knee hurts badly, the cause may be an advanced stage of the injury or joint disease, which is a severe inflammatory process. Sometimes, even at rest, symptoms become permanent, with swelling, redness, and tightening of the skin. All of these signs should alert a person and compel him to see a doctor.

Pain from a bruised knee

Among the traumatic causes of joint dysfunction, bruising is the most common. Why does the knee hurt if there is only a slight bruise before the symptoms? Even minor injuries can be accompanied by bleeding of the soft tissues around the joints, their swelling. As a result, the nerve roots suffer and soreness occurs.

In more severe cases, knee pain increases with flexion and extension of the leg, and the person stops moving due to a sharp feeling in the joint. On palpation, the leg may be swollen and hot to the touch. How to treat such an injury? You should contact your trauma doctor, get an X-ray, follow all recommendations and make sure your leg is safe.

Often, traumatic hemoarthrosis becomes the cause of knee pain after a common bruise. This is the flow of blood into the joint cavity, causing the synovial membrane to swell and swell. As a result, the joint fills with blood, and inflammation begins in it. Without proper treatment, damage can lead to the development of chronic joint disease even at a young age.

Doctor examines knee for injury

Other types of knee injuries

If the leg in the knee is injured, and the trauma causes these sensations, the cause may be various damage to the joint components. The following are the main ones:

  • Meniscal disease. This is a flattening or tearing of the meniscus. This injury is frequently observed in professional athletes, extreme sports participants, and family injuries in particular. A person feels very sick in the knee, the nature of the sensation is harsh, dagger-like, and the joint is temporarily incapacitated.
  • Ligament injury. A torn ligament (sprain) occurs when the leg twists and the limb stretches in an unnatural position after a jump. There is severe pain, the legs swell, and the joints change position and become loose.
  • Cruciate ligament rupture. Because these ligaments are located within the joint, injuries often cause blood to flow into the knee joint cavity. Only a puncture can help draw blood and make an accurate diagnosis.

Knee pain is sometimes accompanied by chronic dislocation of the patella. If the acute injury in many patients is not treated, the dislocation can become chronic and recur periodically. In children, this lesion can cause an X-shaped bend in the leg and severely impair its function. Sometimes pathology can affect the knees of both legs.

Knee pain picture 2

Knee inflammatory disease

Standard treatments for knee pain are often ineffective. In this case, it is not the joint itself that may be affected, but the surrounding soft tissue. Therefore, tendonitis, or inflammation of the tendon, can be triggered by increased pressure on the extremity, past leg injuries, allergies, drug reactions, and more. The knee joint is sore from this disease, usually during the day or night, and the pain subsides at night. In the acute phase, the range of motion of the joints is severely limited, the syndrome persists, and ointment and cream are not suitable for treatment. A sharp sensation was also observed when palpating the lateral part of the knee.

If the knee is frequently injured and symptoms worsen after hypothermia, the cause may be synovitis - inflammation of the synovial membrane. An inflammatory exudate develops within the joint, causing a bursting and painful sensation. Pathological causes vary:

  • autoimmune disease;
  • metabolic disease;
  • Injured in the past;
  • joint.

Another "popular" disease of knee injuries is bursitis. It occurs when the bursa (the joint pocket) becomes inflamed. In addition to the pain syndrome, there is redness, swelling, and increased sensitivity in the patellar area. If you don't clarify how to treat bursitis in time, it will almost always become chronic.

Knee pain picture 3

Knee area tumor

Malignant tumors of this localization are rare, and pain syndromes appear only in advanced stages. More commonly, knee pain is inherent in benign formations:

  • Baker's cyst. This tumor occurs under the knee, on its back. In appearance, the skin over the cyst is normal and not inflamed; in the curved form, there may be no swelling at all. In the standing position, a clear, soft, elastic structure appears at the site of the cyst localization. It occurs when the cartilage is damaged after a unilateral knee injury. Many times, cysts are accompanied by chronic synovitis, arthropathy, and rheumatoid arthritis. Large cysts can not only cause knee pain, but also severely limit mobility. Other symptoms are chills, pale skin, goose bumps and numbness due to compressed blood vessels and nerves.
  • Meniscal cyst. Occurs in the outer or inner meniscus when the fluid-containing cavity is inside the cartilage. In this case, the knee can be injured after a high load or near the end of the day. Larger cysts may be visible on the outside of the joint, while smaller cysts are only visible on ultrasound or X-rays.

A rare pathology is Hoff's disease - a transformation of joint adipose tissue, becoming fibrous and causing joint dysfunction. Against the background of this pathology, arthropathy often occurs, which causes pain in the knee joint. Causes - hormonal disorders, female menopause.

Knee joint disease is the cause of pain

Infectious diseases of the joints

In the context of infection, the knee joint is in severe, severe pain that is not relieved by providing rest. Even urogenital and intestinal infections can bring complications to the musculoskeletal system, leading to reactive arthritis. Bacteria (Salmonella, Chlamydia, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, etc. ) infiltrate the bone and joint cavity with the bloodstream, deposit on the tissue and cause inflammation. The tendons are also usually inflamed, so the knee is swollen and hot to the touch.

Tuberculosis is a serious disease. Mycobacterium tuberculosis multiplies in bone tissue, leading to osteolysis and necrosis of cartilage and soft tissue. Without emergency treatment, the knee joint can injure, collapse, and involve an increasingly larger area. As a result, fistulas appear - cavities with pus, which can pour out and cause damage to the entire organism.

An acute, emergent disease is osteomyelitis. What to do if you hurt your knee and it's accompanied by weakness, muscle aches, and a fever of up to 40 degrees? If the pain in the knee is unbearable, bursting, and the tissue itself is swollen, red, or blue, an ambulance should be called for emergency surgery. Otherwise, you could lose a leg or die.

Knee Pain Picture 4

Knee pain - causes of degenerative nature

After the age of 50, a large number of people suffer from knee pain. The prerequisites are aging of the body, wear and tear of joint devices and the development of the most common pathology - osteoarthritis (knee joint disease). It causes the cartilage to thin, break down, and change the shape of the bone. Most of the time, in the early stages of the pathology, there is pain on one side of the knee, and after a few years the lesions become bilateral. The stiffness of the legs was worrying in the morning, but passed quickly. Feelings may increase after physical labor, high-intensity exercise, or long walks.

In advanced stages, joint tissue collapses and osteophytes grow to both sides of the joint space. These are spikes made of bone tissue that can snap off and cause excruciating pain in severe cases. There are a number of degenerative conditions with symptoms similar to knee arthropathy:

  • Osteochondrosis. It affects the articular surfaces of bones and is associated with trauma, sports. Teens can develop for no apparent reason.
  • arthritis. It occurs in rheumatoid, psoriasis, gout, causing chronic inflammation and joint destruction.
  • chondromatosis. The cause is unclear. The disease causes nodules to develop on the synovium, which limit movement in the knee and cause pain.

Menopausal women often experience knee pain due to osteoporosis - thinning of the bones, increasing their vulnerability. The disease is accompanied by leg cramps, spinal pain, and periodic fractures.

Knee Pain Picture 5

Other Prerequisites for Knee Pain

When the knee is injured, the cause of the sensation may also lie in the failure of the peripheral nervous system. Therefore, sciatic neuropathy in the context of lumbar spine injury can cause many symptoms. A person has a broken knee, pain in the thigh area, weak joints in the extremities, and disturbed skin sensitivity. Leg reflexes also change.

Sometimes the entire knee joint is painful due to vascular disease. It's only during puberty that you shouldn't worry too much -- because of the rapid growth of the body, the blood vessels don't have time to supply blood to the bones. The condition of the joints normalizes with age - usually by the age of 18-20, the pain stops completely.

In old age, in the case of atherosclerosis, the knee is often injured, what should I do in this situation? Without normalizing fat metabolism, plaque will continue to build up within the arteries. The blood vessels are blocked and stop feeding the joints. It develops arthropathy and the pain becomes chronic. Unpleasant sensations in the knee area can also be caused by varicose veins, thrombophlebitis, and blood vessel thrombosis.

How is the diagnosis made?

People's knees are often injured - how to treat a condition that has arisen can only be determined after an examination. Severe pain and pulling in the knee are characteristic of a large number of conditions, some of which are very dangerous. For diagnosis, you should contact a surgeon, orthopaedic surgeon, neurologist, rheumatologist, traumatologist. He will conduct an investigation to find out the exact symptoms of the disease and identify accompanying signs. In addition, the doctor at the initial appointment will perform a series of tests and physical examinations to clarify the nature of the problem.

What to do when your knee hurts, and what instrumentation can help determine the cause? Usually assigned:

  • Ultrasound;
  • nuclear magnetic resonance;
  • computerized tomography;
  • radiography.

The choice of the exact technique must be left to the physician. Therefore, ultrasound can reflect the changes of leg joints and meniscus damage very well. The radiography perfectly showed the presence of skeletal deformities, osteophytes. MRI and CT provide complete information and are essential for complex diseases. In addition, the doctor will prescribe blood tests to rule out inflammation and rheumatism, and if necessary, will perform a biopsy of the joint. For osteoporosis, a densitometry is required - it will show the density of the patient's bone tissue.

Diagnosing the Cause of Knee Pain

Knee Pain Treatment

If the pathology is traumatic in nature, a traumatologist is involved, sometimes in a hospital. Minor bruising will go away on its own within a few days, for quick absorption of the hematoma it is recommended to apply an absorbable ointment to the knee. With pain, it is necessary to rub ointments with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory ingredients.

How is it treated when the knee is injured due to inflammatory lesions? In the acute stage of bursitis, synovitis, and arthritis, the affected limb needs to rest, and ice can be applied for 15 minutes in the first 3 days. Severe pain can be relieved by injecting NSAIDs, an anesthetic injected directly into the joint. To prevent chronic inflammation of the joints after the pain subsides, physical therapy and exercise therapy are required.

knee pain massage

When a person has knee pain due to knee joint disease, what should be done in this situation? The main drugs of treatment are chondroprotective agents and hyaluronic acid injections. These medications are designed to restore nutrients to the joint cartilage so that it stops breaking down. Rehabilitation of the knee must also be assigned:

  • Vascular drugs;
  • physiotherapy;
  • gymnastics;
  • massage;
  • Vitamin complex.

Infectious joint disease is an indication for the introduction of antibiotics or oral medications into the joint cavity. In some cases, surgery is necessary to remove pus-affected tissue. Surgical intervention is also used to treat advanced arthropathy with osteophyte growth. Sometimes only replacing the joint with a prosthetic limb can keep a person's ability to walk normally.