There are many different causes of knee pain, including overuse injuries, trauma, muscular imbalances and functional issues higher or lower in the leg.
The five most common knee conditions that we see are:
Fat pad syndrome
The infrapatella fat pad is a soft tissue that lies beneath the kneecap. As the fat pad is one of the most sensitive structures in the knee, injury to this is known to be extremely painful. This condition is normally long-standing as it is aggravated by straightening of the knee joint. Hence the fat pad comes under constant irritation and may become significantly inflamed.
Patellar tendonitis is an injury to the tendon connecting your kneecap to your shinbone. The patellar tendon works with the muscles at the front of your thigh to extend your knee so you can kick, run and jump.
Patellofemoral pain syndrome is characterised by pain at the front of your knee, around your kneecap. This occurs when the patella (kneecap) rubs on the femur bone underneath. It is often thought that it is due to incorrect tracking or rubbing of the patella over the femur bone resulting in damage or irritation of the cartilage underneath the patella.
Iliotibial band syndrome is inflammation of the Iliotibial band on the outside of the knee as it rubs against the outside of the knee joint. Symptoms of ITB syndrome consist of pain on the outside of the knee. It generally comes on at a certain time into a run and gradually gets worse until often the runner has to stop. The pain is normally aggravated by running, particularly downhill.
Shin splints is the name given to pain at the front of the lower leg. Usually symptoms occur at the front inside of the shin bone and although too much running, jumping or sprinting is the obvious cause, there are a number of factors which can increase the likelihood of shin pain developing.
- Overpronation or Over supination of the feet
- Inadequate footwear
- Increasing training too quickly
- Poor flexibility
Pain is the main symptom of shin splints however, swelling or lumps and bumps can sometimes be felt along the inside of the bone, particularly in more chronic cases where new bone growth has occurred through repeated trauma. Occasionally, in severe cases reddening of the skin over the inside of the leg from acute inflammation may be seen.
In order to know if we can help you, your Chiropractor will perform a thorough case history and examination at your initial appointment to determine the most likely cause of your knee pain and provide you with recommendations to get the best results.