Knee pain can result from either injury to the tendons or ligaments surrounding the knee. This can be caused from diseases or conditions that involve the soft tissue and bones surrounding knee, including the nerves that give feeling to the knee area. Rheumatic diseases most commonly affect the knee area and its joints, causing arthritis.
- Inflammation within a joint is known as arthritis. There are various types of arthritis that cause knee pain. There is a non-inflammatory type known as osteoarthritis which is caused by a degeneration of the cartilage of the knee. Rheumatoid arthritis is where the inflammation of the knee is visible. Treatment for this type of knee pain is determined by the degree of inflammation.
- A cyst can develop from swelling of the knee joint due to arthritis and enable fluid to collect in a localized area. This type of cyst causes knee pain at the back of the knee and is commonly known as a Baker cyst.
- Puncture wounds around the knee can cause knee pain and result in bone or joint infections. Along with the infection, there may be signs of fever, chills of the body, or extreme warmth of the joint.
- Local knee pain may also be caused by tumors but these are also extremely rare.
- Inside the knee, ligaments surrounding the knee can become calcified, resulting in knee pain. If one has this condition, inflammation of the knee occurs. Treatment for this condition may include ice packs, immobilization and rest. Sometimes the knee is injected with cortisone medication.
- Deep knee pain can be caused by a softening of the cartilage under the knee cap and is referred to as chondromalacia. It tends to occur more frequently in younger women and typically after climbing stairs or hills or prolonged sitting. Acute treatment includes the use of ice packs, anti-inflammatory medications and rest. A more long term cure includes exercises that strengthen the quadriceps muscles of the front of the thigh.
- Knee pain on the inside of the knee and along the front of the knee cap is known as bursitis. Aanserine bursitis is when it occurs on the inside of the knee, which is also known as “housemaid’s knee”. Not moving the knee, ice packs, and the use of anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen or aspirin may be used to ease the pain of bursitis. An injection of corticosteroids or cortisone medication may also be required as well as exercises that develop the muscles of the front of the thigh.