Top Things That Can Cause Knee Pain

This is a very vague subject! Is your pain inflammatory? (as for fasciitis, periostics, autoimmune diseases, traumatic origin (a torn ligament, a damaged meniscus, a stress fracture, …), or simply the impact of gravity ?

As you can see, the origin of these pains can be varied. It can be physiological deviations in the knee (knee valgum, knee varum, knee flexum, etc) affecting the muscle chain, ligaments or bone structures or a simple sprained knee that reaches the kneecap or ligaments. In addition, with age, the knee often has knee osteoarthritis (also known as knee osteoarthritis) due to degeneration of the cartilage.

It is important to know the type of pain you’re having.

Pain is mechanical when exacerbated by movement, walking, climbing or descending stairs, kneeling, standing.

The pain is inflammatory when it wakes up the patient around 3 o’clock in the morning.

Sometimes the pain is mixed.

The clinical examination of the knee is codified and includes a number of maneuvers to practice in order to specify the injured element in the joint, or next to the joint.

Stiffness, knee instability are also sought.

The complete clinical examination is followed by a radiological examination.

The Causes

There are many factors that can cause knee pain:

a fracture of one of the bones of the knee joint (tibia, femur, patella);
a sprain, an elongation, a rupture of the ligaments;
rupture or fissure in the menisci;
a mechanical origin:
osteoarthritis of the knee;
meniscus wear related to age;
spontaneous fractures (which can occur in athletes);
or hip pain that can affect the knee;
rheumatoid arthritis;
The accumulation of crystals in the knee joint, such as gout (the formation of uric acid crystals in the joint fluid) or chondrocalcinosis (a calcium deposit on articular cartilage and menisci);

Non-Traumatic Knee Pain (Gonalgia) Of Mechanical Origin

They can be caused by various conditions.

Osteoarthritis of the knee (or knee osteoarthritis) is the most common cause of gonalgia.

Degeneration of menisci (age-related wear) is favored by repeated trauma or abnormalities of leg static (imbalances in standing posture).

Spontaneous fractures occur mainly in athletes, dancers and the military providing intense and repetitive efforts, or overtrained (long marches, multiple jumps, etc.).

The hygroma of the knee (or pre-patellar bursitis) is an inflammation of the so-called pre-patellar bursa, located at the front of the knee. It becomes painful and swollen. This condition is often seen in people who work on their knees (eg tilers).

Bursitis may also occur at the level of the popliteal stock exchange, located at the back of the knee, causing the appearance of a cyst at this location (cyst of the popliteal fossa).

ALS is a set of symptoms that sometimes occurs after surgery or trauma: pain, joint stiffness, circulatory disorders with red and thinned skin, bone decalcification (significant decrease in calcium content), etc.

Aseptic osteonecrosis of the femoral condyles is bone destruction in the femoral condyles, of non-infectious origin. It occurs in the elderly.

Hip pain can also affect the knee (for example, in case of osteoarthritis of the hip).

Osgood-Schlatter’s disease is also called “anterior tibial epiphysitis”. It is an inflammation and fragmentation of the anterior tibial tuberosity (small bony hump located at the front of the tibia). Probably due to an excess of sport, this affection appears especially in the boy between 10 and 15 years.

Paget’s disease causes deformity and anarchic reorganization of the bones. Of unknown origin, it occurs most often after 50 years.

Non-Traumatic Knee Pain (Gonalgia) Of Inflammatory Origin

Various pathologies are likely to cause this type of gonalgia.

Systemic inflammatory diseases sometimes cause knee pain: rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatism associated with psoriasis, ankylosing spondylitis, polyarthritis of the child (chronic inflammation of the joints in children under 16).

The so-called “microcrystalline” rheumatism (linked to the accumulation of tiny crystals in the joints) also causes gonalgia.

Gout is characterized by the formation of uric acid crystals in the joint fluid. This phenomenon is related to an increase in the blood level of uric acid, which is no longer normally eliminated in the urine because of certain conditions.

Chondrocalcinosis is calcium crystal deposits on articular cartilage and menisci.

Painful tendinitis of the knee can affect:

the crow’s feet (tendon fixing three muscles of the thigh to the internal face of the knee),

the patellar tendon, which goes from the lower part of the patella to the shin,

the quadricipital tendon (connecting the quadriceps muscle of the thigh to the upper part of the patella).

An infectious arthritis (due to a bacterium present in the joint), or an osteo-arthritis (infection of the joint and the neighboring bone), sometimes explain the gonalgies.

Rarely, these are due to a tumor or cancer, which can affect the various components of the joint (bone, cartilage, etc.).