Types of Knee Injury
Knee injuries are perhaps the most common injuries assessed by Dr. Lendermon.
Athletic individuals subject his or her knee joints to more stress than the average person. Whether or not the actual sport involves heavy knee impact, athletes who train with running, jumping, and weight lifting are constantly dependent upon the knee joints to provide stability and strength. In sports that involve heavy running or tight turns, the knees are at risk for injury. Ligament and cartilage tears are very common in football, basketball, swimming, wrestling, skiing, and soccer, and the Lendermon Sports Medicine team has years of experience treating knee-related problems.
Three common knee injuries include ligament tears, meniscus tears, and arthritis.
- Ligament – The medial collateral ligament (MCL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) are commonly torn. The ACL is commonly torn when changing directions quickly, stopping suddenly, or landing from a jump. The MCL may be torn when forced impact occurs on the outside of the knee, and the PCL is often torn after experiencing a blow to the front of the knee.
- Meniscus – The medial meniscus, rubbery cartilage connected to the knee ligaments, is often torn along with the ligaments of the knee or independently. Meniscus tears are common following tackles or sharp twisting, cutting, or pivoting moves.
- Arthritis – Athletes who’ve suffered previous knee injury may develop post-traumatic arthritis, a condition where the cartilage of the knee slowly degenerates and causes pain and stiffness. Rheumatoid arthritis and Osteoarthritis are two other forms
Suggestions for first aid treatment of an injured knee include:
- Immediate rest without returning to play
- Do not force weight affected knee
- Apply ice packs
- Bandage the knee in place
- Elevate the leg
- Don’t apply heat
- Avoid alcohol
- Seek medical attention right away
- For serious injuries, visit Lendermon Sports Medicine or local emergency room.
Dr.Lendermon will work with you to develop an individualized plan of care designed to ensure proper healing and a safe return to activity. Depending on the severity of the tear, surgery may be recommended for knee injuries; however, many patients are able to avoid surgery. Mild tears may be effectively treated with rest and progressive physical therapy.
Keep in mind that if you are experiencing any knee problems, you should see a physician as soon as possible to minimize any damage. Treatment for knee injuries may include draining built up fluid around the knee, physical therapy, and arthroscopic or open surgery. Treatment for arthritis of the knee is dependent upon therapy and lifestyle modifications. A total or partial knee replacement may be needed for severe acute injury or chronic and severe arthritis.