Get answers to your Sports Injury/Medicine questions.
Pain - knee
For knee pain that has just started:
For knee pain related to overuse or physical activity:
Tips to relieve knee bursitis pain:
Call your doctor if:
Your health care provider will perform a physical examination, with careful attention to your knees, hips, legs, and other joints.
To help diagnose the cause of the problem, your health care provider will ask medical history questions, such as:
The following tests may be done:
Your health care provider may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that are stronger than those available over-the-counter. If those don't help, your doctor may inject a steroid into the knee to reduce pain and inflammation.
You may need referrals to a physical therapist (to learn stretching and strengthening exercises) and podiatrist (to be fitted for orthotics).
In some cases, surgery is needed. For example, if arthritis is severe, a joint replacement may be recommended. A minor ligament strain will heal with home care and torn ligaments may recover with use of a knee brace. However, for big tears or ruptures, as well as a torn meniscus, arthroscopic knee surgery is often needed.
Recovery from ligament and meniscus problems is slow. You may need crutches and long-term physical therapy.
Frontera WR, Silver JK, eds. Essentials of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier;2008:section 7.
Honkamp NJ, Shen W, Okeke N, Ferretti M, Fu FH. Knee: Anterior cruciate ligament injuries in the adult. In: DeLee JC, Drez D Jr, Miller MD, eds. DeLee and Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2009:chap 23, section D.
Huddleston JI, Goodman SB. Hip and knee pain. In: Firestein GS, Budd RC, Harris ED Jr, et al, eds. Kelley's Textbook of Rheumatology. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2008:chap 42.
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