Knee injuries Clearwater, MO. The knee is a multifaceted joint that permits our bodies to accomplish a wide array of movements such as sitting, standing, lifting, walking, running, jumping and more. Experiencing a knee injury makes walking and a lot of other basic activities painful or even impossible. If you’ve recently suffered a knee injury or are impacted by chronic knee pain, it is important to find first-rate physical therapy with licensed physical therapists in the Clearwater, MO area. At Axes Physical Therapy, we offer safe and effective therapy to hundreds of patients in the Clearwater, MO area. Contact us today to find out more or schedule your first appointment.
Axes Physical Therapy provides bespoke, evidence-based evaluation and therapy for people with knee injuries in Clearwater, MO. Our knee injury experts specialize in personalized treatment plans made specifically for your injury, needs and movement goals. Axes Physical Therapy is a network of physical therapy experts at various locations, each owned and operated by physical therapists. We are devoted to serving the individual needs of each Clearwater, MO resident we treat.
The Human Knee
The knee is one of the largest and most complex joints we have. It connects the tibia (shin bone) to the femur (thigh bone). The fibula (the small bone that runs adjacent to the tibia) and patella (kneecap) are the other bones that constitute the knee joint. Surrounding the knee are leg muscles, which help move the knee, and tendons and ligaments that connect the knee bones to the leg muscles or ligaments which help stabilize the knee. These ligaments include the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), which provide stability to the front and back of the knee, and the medial and lateral collateral ligaments (MCL and LCL), which stabilize side-to-side movement. The medial and lateral menisci behave like shock absorbers between the tibia and femur.
Due to the complexity of the joint and the pressure placed on the knee, with parts that can be torn, fractured, sprained, or dislocated, knee injuries are one of the most commonly seen musculoskeletal injuries that are suffered. If you’ve experienced a knee injury or are dealing with chronic knee pain, you need the care and careful treatment of Clearwater, MO area physical therapists. Our team of expert therapists who are highly knowledgeable when treating knee injuries will lead you in your recovery and help you regain complete mobility of your injured knee.
Types of Knee Injuries and Common Causes
Knee sprains are knee injuries that can hurt a lot, and they occur when ligaments in the knee are torn or overstretched. Knee sprains are painful, and if left unattended or treated incorrectly can lead to chronic problems, including arthritis. Knee sprains are usually the result of acute twisting injuries, or occur when an outside force stretches or tears a ligament. It is usually a sports related injury that comes from force, such as a hit to the front or outside of the knee. Furthermore, non contact knee sprains are very typical and result from weakness, muscle fatigue or improper technique. Symptoms include:
- Weakness or tenderness
- Pain and stiffness
- Muscle Spasms
Torn cartilage can frequently happen take place at the same time as sprains, and occur when trauma to the knee tears the menisci. It’s typically the result of forcefully twisting or rotating your knee and is often seen in contact sports such as football, as well as sports like soccer or baseball with repeated leaping and rotating/pivoting. In older adults, a cartilage tear in the knee can occur with little or no trauma as the knee cartilage loses flexibility and pliability with age. Symptoms include:
- Soreness when training or exercising
- Buckling or locking of the knee joint
- Crunching or popping noises when walking
- Difficulty bearing weight
- Inability to bend or extend the knee
Patellar Tendonitis, also referred to as “jumper’s knee,” is caused by inflammation of the tendons in the knee, specifically the quadriceps tendon. Anterior knee pain is usually the main symptom of this kind of knee injury, and initially it may only occur when training or exercising. It is also frequently an overuse injury. Over time, the pain increases and starts to make exercising or playing sports more difficult. If unattended, eventually you could have trouble climbing stairs or even rising from a chair. For that reason, it’s vital to receive physical therapy for knee injuries.
Patellofemoral pain syndrome is a knee injury that worsens with time and causes pain felt in the front of the knee. The pain is caused by tracking and alignment issues between the patella and femur and is typically felt when climbing stairs or getting up from a chair. The specific cause is still unknown; however, most physicians and physical and occupational therapists think these knee injuries occur when the knee is overused, or there is weakness of the quadriceps muscle and inflexibility of other hip and knee musculature.
Fractures are an exceptionally painful variety of knee injuries and need urgent medical attention. More destructive fractures can necesitate surgery to repair the knee and return functionality. There are three common knee injuries related to fractures:
- Patellar: a fracture of the kneecap that typically happens when you land directly on your knee, hit the dashboard in a motor vehicle accident or experience another type of extreme external force to the knee. Symptoms include:
- Pain, swelling, and bruising
- Inability to straighten the knee or keep it straight
- Inability to walk
- Distal Femur: takes place where the thigh bone and knee meet. The bone can shatter or might break straight across. Distal femoral knee injuries often also damage the cartilage in the knee, which makes them difficult to treat. They usually occur in the elderly as their bones weaken, or to people in high energy impact collisions. Symptoms include:
- Pain when placing weight on the knee
- Swelling, bruising, and tenderness
- The leg may look shorter and crooked
- Proximal Tibia: often injure the soft tissue of the knee as well. The top of the tibia, where it meets the knee, is softer than the rest of the bone. These knee injuries frequently occur when the femur is forced by trauma into the soft bone at the top of the tibia. Proximal tibia knee injuries are sometimes minor breaks that occur from excessive activity, but most happen because of falling, sports injuries or car crashes. Symptoms include:
- inflammation surrounding the knee
- Visually clear deformity or misalignment
- Lack of feeling or warmth in the foot, as the flow of blood to the foot could be affected
Dislocation of the knee or kneecap can either happen when the femur and tibia are forced out of alignment, or when the patella is pushed out of place. These are frequently caused by high impact trauma from sports, car accidents or falls. People with a slightly unusual structure of the knee are at a heightened risk of patellar dislocation knee injuries. While a Clearwater, MO doctor will be able to correct the dislocation, treatment by a physical therapist will be an important aspect of the recuperation process to reduce swelling, slowly increase motion and improve strength in the hip and leg musculature.
ACL, PCL, MCL, and LCL Injuries can be either tears or sprains. ACL injuries can often take place in high-energy sports where players are landing after jumping or switching direction quickly. The PCL can frequently be torn when there is trauma to the front of the knee as it is bent. Symptoms of these knee injuries include swelling and knee instability. While ACL tears are frequently accompanied by damage to other parts of the knee, ACL tears alone are not always painful. MCL and LCL tears occur when there is a blow that pushes the knee sideways.
Diagnoses and Tests
It is important to receive the proper immediate and long-term treatment after experiencing a knee injury. The treatment you receive can account for either quick and effective recovery or a lifetime of chronic, debilitating pain. In the event of knee injuries that cause evident and major trauma, such as a dislocated patella, tests may not be needed and a Clearwater, MO ER doctor will work to stabilize the knee as quickly as possible. Other methods of diagnosis for knee injuries are:
- A physical examination. A Clearwater, MO medical professional can evaluate the appearance and mobility of your knee while checking for inflammation or tenderness. Our physical therapists are professionals in human motion and provide free, no obligation injury screenings for your knee injuries and other injuries.
- X-Rays can show bone fractures and degenerative joint disease.
- CT scans combine X-rays from various angles to build cross-sectional images of your knee. They can help reveal knee injuries such as subtle fractures.
- Ultrasounds use sound waves to create images of the soft tissue in your knee. Your doctor may move your knee into different positions to look for specific issues.
- MRIs create 3D pictures of the inside of your knee. This test is often used to show soft tissue injuries, such as ACL tears or patellar tendonitis.
If you are experiencing pain caused by a knee injury, contact Axes Physical Therapy to work with a Clearwater, MO physical therapist who specializes in knee injuries. Your knee injury therapist will evaluate your movement, your mobility, and will also examine how strong and stable your knee is. After diagnosis, your Axes physical therapist in Clearwater, MO County will recommend a individually tailored treatment plan, which may include an appointment with a Clearwater, MO orthopedic or sports physician.
Treatments and Therapy
Minor knee injuries can be treated using the RICE Method: rest, ice, gentle compression, and elevation. If you feel pain, you need to rest and to temporarily cease any activity you think may have resulted in your injury. Get medical attention if you hear a popping noise or feel loss of stability when your injury first occurs, if you experience severe pain or swelling, are unable to move the knee, or are unable to bear weight without pain. With some serious knee injuries, such as ACL tears or broken bones, surgery is required to correct the structure of the knee and make the knee functional again. Physical therapy will then be part of your preoperative and postoperative treatment plan. A Clearwater, MO physical therapist who treats knee injuries will help you safely restore movement and strength to your knee as your injury heals. Typical therapies for knee injuries include (depending on your injury):
- Stretches and strengthening exercises of the entire leg and hip
- Core strengthening
- Ice and heat
- Soft tissue mobilization
- Electrical stimulation
- Proprioceptive exercises
- Functional return to sports, activity, and exercises
At Axes Physical Therapy, our treatment plans are based on proven treatment strategies and are tailored specifically for each patient. We lead you in your rehabilitation to safely get you back to the activities you love.
We treat a wide variety of conditions and complaints and have a team of specialists ready to help you. Some of our other services are:
- Knee Injury
- Joint Pain
- Dry Needling
- ACL Tear
- Pain Management
- Rotator Cuff Tear
- Arthritis Treatment
- Sports Injury
Receive Physical Therapy for Knee Injuries
If you are experiencing knee pain or have recently suffered a knee injury, you require the specialized advice of Clearwater, MO physical therapists to eliminate your pain and return you to full mobility. Axes Physical Therapy will help you get back to the sports and activities you love with the dedicated, individualized care of your Axes physical therapist. Contact us today to schedule an appointment or discover the knee injury treatment location nearest you.