Common Knee Injuries and Their Treatment

Common Knee Injuries and Their Treatment

Knee injuries can occur at any given point in time, during a number of recreational activities or work-related projects. Knees are the biggest joints in the human body. Their lower and upper bones are separated by menisci. The femur (upper bone) is connected to the fibula and tibia (lower bones) through a network of muscles, tendons, and ligaments. The articular cartilage covers the surface of the bones featured by the knee joint, and that layer of cartilage serves an important purpose: it protects the bones from powerful impacts and also creates a smooth surface for optimal joint movement.

Identifying the Most Common Types of Knee Injuries 

Injuries can be listed among some of the most common health and well-being issues related to the poor functionality of a knee. Acute or sudden injuries are usually caused by powerful shocks (a direct blow), or abnormal, sudden movements, bending or falls. Acute injuries are usually accompanied with a plethora of common symptoms, including bruising and swelling. In some cases, the injury may damage blood vessels or nerves, making the knee or the entire leg change its color or feel weak or numb.

Fractures, ligament tears, sprains, strains, meniscus tears, kneecap dislocations, and knee joint dislocations are a few of the most common injuries that should compel patients to seek immediate medical care. All these medical problems can be linked to several causes. For instance, knee fractures are usually triggered by powerful forces. Someone could fracture his knee after falling on it, or after hitting an object with it by accident. Kneecap dislocation is a common type of injury that affects mostly women. As an end result of direct trauma, dislocation is preceded by a sudden change in trajectory when the leg is put down.

This misguided movement puts a lot of pressure on the kneecap, making it slip towards the outside of one’s knee. Furthermore, forceful twisting or too much pressure applied on the knee joint can be the culprit for a torn meniscus. Symptoms associated with this injury may include popping, inflammation and pain. At the same time, sudden twisting may cause a knee sprain. People can sprain a knee while running, jumping, or changing trajectory suddenly. Sprains are common injuries among athletes and people with active lifestyles.

Orthopedists Provide Accurate Diagnoses and an Effective Treatment Plans

The same cause can be linked to multiple knee injuries requiring different treatment plans; this is why patients should seek medical advice from a licensed and insured orthopedist before addressing their symptoms. Only a specialist could recommend the most adequate treatment plan, based on the type and extent of the patient’s injury. Conventional treatment for common knee injuries is usually comprised of a few key components, including first-aid measures, anti-inflammatory medication, bracing, rest, and physical therapy. When conventional treatment methods fail to provide the desirable results, or when the injury requires invasive treatment methods, doctors may advise their patients to undergo surgery.  Generally speaking, treatment plans vary a great deal depending on the severity, location, and type of injury, and a few particularities related to patients, including their medical history, lifestyle and age.

Dr. Bryan has been in practice for over thirty five years at the Texas Medical Center in Houston. He earned a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland before graduating with his M.D. from the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.