Symptoms of knee pain
The symptoms of knee problems can vary and will depend upon the cause and severity. However, knee pain is common.
Instability and weakness in the knee, or the feeling that your knee is about to give way, is a common knee problem.
How knee pain can affect you
Knee pain is more common as you get older, due to years of wear and tear, if you are overweight (as this puts more stress on the joint), or if you play sports. Because your knees are vital to movement, knee pain can stop you from playing sports and make it difficult to carry out simple activities, such as walking and climbing stairs.
Did you know?
The knee joint is made up of three bones, tendons that connect the bones to the muscles and ligaments that stabilise and connect the bones. Two c-shaped pieces of cartilage called menisci act as cushioning in the joint, while fluid filled sacs called bursa help the knee move smoothly.
Why do we experience knee pain?
There are many causes of knee pain from injuries such as strains, sprains, torn ligaments and cartilage tears, tendonitis (inflamed tendons) and bursitis (where fluid builds up in the bursa, the sac of fluid that cushions the knee joints).
Knee injuries are common among athletes, for example, who often experience tears in the knee ligaments, leading to sudden knee pain. Runner’s knee is a condition that can affect anyone who does a lot of knee bends, for example while running, walking, jumping or cycling. It is felt as pain around the kneecap and can be the result of overuse, injury, abnormalities of the leg bones or feet and weak muscles.
Depending on the cause of your knee pain, there are different ways to diagnose and treat it. You can try PRICE therapy at home, where you Protect, Rest, Ice, Compress and Elevate the knee to relieve pain. You can also take over-the-counter pain killers or use topical pain relief products from your pharmacist to help relieve acute (short-term, non-serious) pain. If pain is long lasting or more severe, you should see a doctor or specialist. They may perform a physical examination to test the mobility of your joint as well as inspect for swelling, tenderness, visible bruising and warmth and recommend physical therapy and knee braces to relieve knee pain. He or she may also order imaging tests such as an X-ray, MRI, ultrasound or CT scan.
What is runner’s knee?
Athletes and runners are particularly
prone to knee injuries.
Symptoms of runner’s knee include:
- Pain behind or around the kneecap
- Pain when you bend your knee
- Pain that is worse when you are walking downhill or downstairs
- Popping or grinding in the knee
For full prescribing information refer to the professional information approved by the medicines regulatory authority.
Exercises to ease knee pain
Knee pain is very common, affecting 69% of people with pain. Here we show how to do three simple exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles that support your knees. By doing these regularly, you can help to prevent or ease knee pain.