Knee pain is something that can affect anyone - irrespective of their age. While sometimes it may be of minor importance - and can easily be handled by self-care, often, lingering pain is a manifestation of some other serious underlying problem, such as arthritis. In this case, it is imperative that you consult a doctor and take appropriate measures to combat it.
Arthritis: The chief cause of lingering knee pain, arthritis itself can be of a number of types:
- Osteoarthritis, which is a result of deterioration of cartilages due to wear and tear
- Rheumatoid Arthritis, an inflammatory chronic disorder
- Septic Arthritis, causing pain, swelling and redness.
- Gout caused due to the development of uric acid crystals in the joints
Fractures: These are caused by the breaking up of the kneecap due to falls or collisions.
ACL Injuries: Caused due to the tearing of the anterior cruciate ligament (that connects the femur and the shinbone). Especially common in sportspersons such as footballers or basketball players.
Meniscus tears: The meniscus or the rubber-like cartilage (that acts as a shock absorber) can be torn by sudden jerks or excess pressure.
The major symptoms of knee pain include weakness, redness, instability, stiffness or the inability to properly straighten or move the leg. Often, a deformity is also visible, such as a bone sticking out of the leg - in which case it is advisable to consult a doctor immediately.
- Possible risks: Factors which include the odds of being inflicted by knee pain and cause serious complications include :
- Being overweight: This exponentially increases the stress or pressure that is applied on the knee joints - even in doing mundane tasks like walking up and down stairs.
- Excessive physical activity: Some activities, such as sports apply excess stress on the knees as compared to other tasks.
- Loss of muscle flexibility: Tightness or weakness in muscles causes increasing number of problems in the knees.
Related Tip: Causes and Symptoms of Knee Pain?