Common Causes of Knee Pain and How to Treat Them

Common Causes of Knee Pain and How to Treat Them

There are a variety of reasons for knee pain. Not surprisingly, the cause of the pain tends to guide the solution that best addresses the issue. Below, some of the most common knee pain causes and the solutions that are designed to improve your quality of life.

Sprains and Strains

Injuries to the joint are one of the most common causes of knee pain. Sprains and strains, as well as tendinitis and runner’s knee, often occur as the result of playing sports.

Patellar Dislocation (Kneecap Dislocation)

Another possible explanation for knee pain is patellar dislocation. This occurs when the kneecap slips out of its correct position. Both pain and swelling are likely to occur.

Meniscal Tear

A meniscal tear is when the cartilage is torn during an injury. The ragged edges of the tear can become stuck in the knee joint, causing swelling and pain.

Sometimes, you will feel like your knee is unstable when you are active. A meniscal transplant might be required, depending on the severity of the tear.


Knee osteoarthritis is caused by wear and tear on this much-used joint. Not surprisingly, it is the number one reason that people over the age of 50 experience knee pain.

When you’re active — whether that means playing sports, exercising or walking — your knee joint will likely ache and swell. Another sign that you have osteoarthritis is stiffness in the knee when you wake up.

Losing weight, knee pain exercises and anti-inflammatory medication are often the first lines of defense. Corticosteroid injections, braces and physical therapy might also be options.

Surgical solutions are sometimes the only knee pain treatment that is effective. Arthroscopic surgery and knee joint replacement are two common surgical options.

Knee Ligament

Knee ligament injuries most often involve the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). Strong bands of tissues, a ligament connects bones to each other. The ACL connects the shin and thigh bone to one another.

Because knee ligament injuries can make it painful enough so that you can’t walk, they can significantly reduce your mobility and quality of life. ACL injuries that are minor could respond well to non-surgical treatments. In other cases, though, surgery is the most effective method of restoring normal function to the joint.

Regardless of the cause of your knee pain, the sooner you seek out treatment, the more quickly it can be addressed. At Huntington Orthopedic Institute, we provide our patients with advanced orthopedic care using the latest technologies. Contact us today to learn more about what we offer or to schedule an appointment.

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