The knee is a tricky joint with many parts and can get hurt in many ways. Sprains, ligament tears, broken bones, and dislocations are some of the most common knee injuries. A knee injury can impact ligaments, tendons, fluid-filled sacs (bursae), and the bones, cartilage, and ligaments that compose the joint. There are a few common causes of knee injuries that you should know about.
Injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament are common among athletes. Athletes that engage in cutting and pivoting sports, such as soccer, football, and basketball, are more prone to ACL injury. The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) can be torn by making a sudden directional change or by landing a leap improperly. Nearly half of all ACL tears seen at our orthopedic surgeon in Lake Mary also involve injury to other knee tissues, such as the articular cartilage, meniscus, or other ligaments.
Tendinitis is an inflammation and irritation of a tendon, a thick, fibrous tissue connecting muscles to bones. Injuries to the tendon that connects the kneecap (patella) to the shinbone can cause this inflammation, which is necessary for kicking, running, and jumping. Patellar tendinitis is a knee injury that can affect runners, skiers, cyclists, and jumpers.
Playing your sport multiple times per week as an athlete increases the risk of overuse injuries. For instance, when playing sports like basketball or tennis, the player must constantly hop, which places great stress on the knees.
Even while moderate jogging shouldn't be considered knee overuse, research shows that if you've ever had a knee injury and keep on running, you can get knee arthritis. Fast running (less than five minutes per mile, for example) and marathons have been linked to the onset of arthritis in later life.
In addition to higher risk, if you have a close family with osteoarthritis, those over the age of 50 are disproportionately affected. Cartilage cushions the ends of your bones in the knee joint, preventing them from grinding against one another. Deterioration of cartilage in arthritis causes bones to rub against one another, causing excruciating discomfort.
Injuries might trigger the onset of arthritis. You might have torn your ACL and undergone surgery to fix it. Arthritis is more common following a joint injury because it may have altered the mechanics of the joint, leading to accelerated cartilage wear.
When you fall or are in an automobile accident, you risk breaking your knee bones, especially your kneecap (patella). In addition, those with osteoporosis are more likely to have a knee fracture from taking a misstep.
The cartilage that separates your tibia from your femur is called a meniscus and serves as a shock absorber. It might get ripped if you suddenly twist your knee while putting weight on it.
Bursitis is inflammation of the little fluid-filled sacs that line the exterior of your knee joint and help your tendons and ligaments move freely.
It is important to know the common causes of knee injuries because the location and severity of any form of knee pain depend on them. Other causes of knee pain include patellofemoral pain syndrome (also common in athletes), hip pain, gout, dislocation, and more. You should see a trusted orthopedic surgeon in Lake Mary if you have severe pain due to an injury in your knee.