A painful knee can not only limit your mobility, but it can also cause you to miss work or school. Explore the possible reasons for your discomfort.

Pain in either or both of your knees might flare up when you sit down or stand up, or when you’re walking or running. Whether your pain is constant or just shows up sometimes, the discomfort you feel might get worse if you don’t identify and address the underlying issue.

Our experts at North Point Orthopaedics encourage you to book a visit at either of our offices, in Munster, Crown Point, or Valparaiso, Indiana, for severe or persistent knee pain. They’re highly familiar with the treatments it takes to manage knee pain from age-related degeneration, repeated stress, or an acute injury.

Knee pain from an acute injury is often the most stark, and you can probably identify when and how it started pretty easily. Other forms of knee pain set in gradually and may not start out with such severe pain. No matter what’s causing your discomfort and any other symptoms that arrive with your knee pain, you can receive a custom-tailored treatment strategy in our offices.

Our experts routinely evaluate, diagnose, and treat knee pain from five of its most common causes:

1. Sprains and strains

Inside each of your knees is a network of ligaments and tendons that allows your knee to have mobility while maintaining the joint’s balance and preventing it from moving in unnatural directions.

If any of the ligaments or tendons inside your knee so much as overstretches, the injury is either a sprain (if it’s a ligament) or a strain (if it’s a muscle or tendon). More severe sprains and strains can involve complete tears. Knee sprains and strains can happen to these structures:

  • Quadriceps tendon
  • Patellar tendon
  • Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL)
  • Posterior cruciate ligament (PCL)
  • Medial collateral ligament (MCL)
  • Lateral collateral ligament (LCL)

Tendons help move your knee, while ligaments serve stability-related purposes.

2. Arthritis

Multiple forms of arthritis can affect your knees and other joints throughout your body. More of a blanket term for multiple conditions than a singular condition, arthritis causes pain, inflammation, and stiffness in your joints.

One of the most common types of arthritis that can affect your knees is called osteoarthritis, and it involves wear and tear within the joint over time. Your knees stand out as one of the joints that osteoarthritis most commonly affects because you use them so much for walking, running, jumping, and standing up.

Rheumatoid arthritis, another prevalent form, causes joint inflammation by deteriorating the cartilage within the joint. It’s an autoimmune disorder, which means your immune system is responsible for the joint damage, and you can experience symptoms much earlier in life than with osteoarthritis.

3. Meniscus tears

The menisci inside your knees are C-shaped pads of cartilage that provide cushioning between your thigh bone and shin bone. Meniscus tears are particularly common as athletic injuries and happen when you twist the knee or are forcefully tackled. They also become more common as your joints age.

Meniscus tears result in knee pain on either the inner side or the outer side of your knee joint.

4. Tendinitis

Not the same as a strain, tendinitis happens when you overuse your knee joints, and the tendons become inflamed. This can result in immense pain that gradually worsens the more you participate in activities like cycling, running, or jumping.

Patellar tendinitis, which you might know as “jumper’s knee,” is tendinitis of the patellar tendon. It’s the band of tissue connecting your kneecap to your shin bone. As its nickname implies, you’re likely to get jumper’s knee if you play sports like basketball or volleyball that tend to involve leaping off the ground.

Regardless of the reason for your pain, you can manage it with individualized treatment at North Point Orthopaedics. Schedule an appointment over the phone or online at the location nearest you today.

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