Pain Above Knee: Causes & Treatment

Pain Above Knee: Causes & Treatment

Pain Above Knee: Causes & Treatment


Knee pain can be debilitating, especially when it's above the knee. This type of pain can interfere with daily activities like walking or climbing stairs. Pain above the knee is often a symptom of an underlying condition that requires diagnosis and treatment by an orthopedic specialist. In this blog post, we will discuss the common causes of pain above the knee and the treatment options available.


1. Knee Ligament Sprains

Pain above the knee could originate from a sprain or tear of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). A sprain happens when a ligament is stretched or torn. When the ACL is sprained or torn, the pain is usually felt above the knee. ACL injuries can occur while playing sports like soccer, basketball, or football, or as a result of a traumatic injury. If you experience pain above your knee after a knee injury, you should see an orthopedic surgeon.

2. Iliotibial Band Friction Syndrome

Iliotibial band (ITB) friction syndrome is a common condition caused by the rubbing of the ITB over the lateral femoral epicondyle, leading to inflammation and pain above the knee. This condition is most common in runners or cyclists who perform repetitive movements for extended periods. Treatment options include rest, physical therapy and stretching exercises, and anti-inflammatory medication.

3. Patellofemoral Syndrome

Patellofemoral syndrome is a condition in which the patella (kneecap) fails to move smoothly, leading to pain above the knee. This condition is common in athletes, including basketball players, runners, and cyclists. Treatment options include physical therapy, stretching exercises, and anti-inflammatory medication.

4. Meniscal Tears

The meniscus is a crescent-shaped cartilage that cushions the shinbone and thighbone to prevent rubbing and wear. Meniscal tears are common in athletes and older adults and can cause pain above the knee. Treatment options for meniscal tears may include physical therapy, rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory medication. In some cases, surgery may be required to repair or remove the damaged tissue.

5. Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis that affects the knee joint, leading to pain and stiffness above the knee. It is most common in people over the age of 50. Treatment options include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), physical therapy, braces or supports, and weight loss to reduce the load on the knee joint. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to repair or replace the damaged joint.



Pain above the knee is a common symptom of many knee injuries and conditions. While some causes of this pain are relatively benign, others can be severe and may require surgery. If you experience persistent pain above your knee, it's important to see an orthopedic specialist to determine the underlying cause of your discomfort. At Central Florida Bone & Joint Institute, our experienced orthopedic surgeons in Altamonte Springs, FL can help diagnose and treat a range of knee injuries and conditions, so you can get back to your regular activities and enjoy a better quality of life. Contact us today for more information.