Knee injuries South County, MO. The knee is a versatile joint that allows our bodies to accomplish a wide range of functional activities like sitting, standing, lifting, walking, running, jumping and more. Experiencing a knee injury makes walking and a lot of other daily tasks painful or even impossible. If you’ve recently sustained a knee injury or suffer from chronic knee pain, it is vital to find top-notch physical therapy with licensed physical therapists in the South County, MO area. At Axes Physical Therapy, we offer safe and effective therapy to hundreds of South County, MO residents. Contact us today to find out more or schedule your first appointment.
Axes Physical Therapy provides individually tailored, evidence-based evaluation and treatment for those with knee injuries in South County, MO. Our knee injury experts specialize in customized treatment plans designed specifically for your condition, needs and movement goals. As a network of physical therapy facilities locally owned and operated by South County, MO physical therapists, Axes Physical Therapy is dedicated to serving the specific needs of each South County, MO patient we see.
The Human Knee
The knee is one of the biggest and most complex joints in the body. It joins 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 form the knee joint. Encircling 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 give support and stability. These ligaments include the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), which give stability to the front and back of the knee, and the medial and lateral collateral ligaments (MCL and LCL), which stabilize sideways movement. The medial and lateral menisci are shock absorbers between the tibia and femur.
Owing to the complexity of the joint and the pressure placed on the knee, with structures that can be torn, fractured, sprained, or dislocated, knee injuries are one of the most typical musculoskeletal injuries that are suffered. If you’ve experienced a knee injury or are living with chronic knee pain, you need the care and careful treatment of South County, MO area physical therapists. Our team of expert therapists who specialize in treating knee injuries will guide you in your recuperation and restore full mobility of your injured knee.
Types of Knee Injuries and Common Causes
Knee sprains can be painful knee injuries that happen when ligaments in the knee are torn or overstretched. Knee sprains are painful, and if untreated or treated inadequately can result in chronic problems, including arthritis. Knee sprains are commonly caused by acute twisting injuries, or injuries caused by external forces that stretch or tear 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 mechanics. Symptoms include:
- Weakness or tenderness
- Pain and stiffness
- Muscle Spasms
Torn cartilage can frequently occur in tandem with sprains, and occur when trauma to the knee tears the menisci. It’s most frequently caused by 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 continued jumping 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:
- Dull pain when training or exercising
- Buckling or locking of the knee joint
- Crunching or popping noises when walking
- Difficulty bearing weight
- Inability to flex or straighten the knee
Patellar Tendonitis, also called “jumper’s knee,” is a result of swelling of the tendons in the knee, specifically the quadriceps tendon. Anterior knee pain is usually the main symptom of this sort of knee injury, and at first it might only occur when working out or exercising. It often stems from overuse. Over time, the pain becomes worse and starts to make exercising or playing sports more difficult. If unattended, after a while you could have trouble climbing stairs or even getting up 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 a result of tracking and alignment issues between the patella and femur and is often experienced climbing stairs or getting up from a chair. The exact cause is still unknown; however, most doctors and physical and occupational therapists think these knee injuries occur because of general overuse and weakness of the quadriceps muscle and inflexibility of other hip and knee musculature.
Fractures are an exceptionally painful category of knee injuries and require urgent medical treatment. More complex fractures can need surgery to repair the knee and allow it to function normally again. There are three common knee injuries related to fractures:
- Patellar: a fracture of the kneecap that typically takes place when you fall exactly on your knee, hit the dashboard in a auto accident or experience another type of extreme external force to the knee. Symptoms include:
- Pain, inflammation, and bruising
- Inability to extend the knee or keep it straight
- Inability to walk
- Distal Femur: happens where the thigh bone and knee connect. The bone may shatter or might suffer a clean fracture. Because distal femoral knee injuries can hurt the cartilage in the knee, they can sometimes be more difficult to treat. They typically occur in the elderly as their bones weaken, or to people in high energy impact collisions. Symptoms include:
- Pain when putting weight on the knee
- Swelling, bruising, and tenderness
- The leg may look shorter and crooked
- Proximal Tibia: frequently damage the soft tissue of the knee as well. The top of the tibia, where it connects to the knee, is not as hard as 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 too much activity, but most happen because of falling, sports injuries or auto accidents. Symptoms include:
- Swelling surrounding the knee
- Visually obvious deformity or misalignment
- Numb, pale, or cold feet, as the flow of blood to the foot could be restricted
Dislocation of the knee or kneecap can either occur when the femur and tibia are forced out of alignment, or when the patella is forced out of place. These are usually caused by high impact trauma from sports, car accidents or falls. People with a somewhat unusual structure of the knee are at a heightened risk of patellar dislocation knee injuries. While a South County, MO doctor can correct the dislocation, treatment by a physical therapist will be a vital facet of the recuperation process to reduce swelling, slowly increase motion and increase strength in the hip and leg musculature.
ACL, PCL, MCL, and LCL Injuries can be both tears or sprains. ACL injuries can often occur in high-energy sports where players are landing after jumping or switching direction rapidly. The PCL can frequently be torn when force is applied to the front of the knee as it is bent. Symptoms of these knee injuries include inflammation and lack of stability. While ACL tears are frequently accompanied by damage to other parts of the knee, by themselves they are not always painful. MCL and LCL tears occur when there is a blow that pushes the knee sideways.
Diagnoses and Tests
It is vital to receive the correct immediate and long-term care after experiencing a knee injury. The treatment you receive can be the difference between a swift and strong recovery or a lifetime of chronic, debilitating pain. In regards to knee injuries involving noticeable and serious trauma, such as a dislocated patella, tests may not be necessary and a South County, MO ER doctor will work to stabilize the knee as quickly as possible. Other means of diagnosis for knee injuries are:
- A physical examination. A South County, 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 offer free, no obligation injury screenings for your knee injuries and other injuries.
- X-Rays can show broken bones and degenerative joint disease.
- CT scans combine X-rays from varying angles to produce cross-sectional images of your knee. They can help detect knee injuries such as subtle fractures.
- Ultrasounds use sound waves to build images of the soft tissue in your knee. Your doctor may rotate and extend your knee at different angles to look for specific issues.
- MRIs create 3D images of the inside of your knee. This test is often utilized to reveal soft tissue injuries, such as ACL tears or patellar tendonitis.
If you are suffering from pain caused by a knee injury, contact Axes Physical Therapy to work with a South County, MO physical therapist who is an expert in knee injuries. Your knee injury therapist will analyze your motion, your mobility, and will also inspect how strong and stable your knee is. After diagnosis, your Axes physical therapist in South County, MO County will recommend a bespoke treatment plan, which might include an appointment with a South County, MO orthopedic or sports physician.
Treatments and Therapy
Minor knee injuries can often heal with the RICE Method: rest, ice, gentle compression, and elevation. If you are experiencing pain, it’s important to rest and to momentarily cease any activity you think may have resulted in your injury. Seek 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 cannot bear weight without pain. With some serious knee injuries, such as ACL tears or bone fractures, surgery is required to correct the structure of the knee and return functionality. Physical therapy will then be part of your preoperative and postoperative treatment plan. A South County, MO physical therapist who treats knee injuries will put you on the path to safely restore motion and strength in your knee as you recuperate. Common therapies for knee injuries are (depending on your injury):
- Stretches and strengthening exercises of the entire lower extremity
- 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 founded 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:
- Sports Injury
- Work Injury Rehabilitation
- Physical Therapist Near Me
- Neck Pain
- Occupational Therapy
- Low Back Pain
- Free Injury Screening
Receive Physical Therapy for Knee Injuries
If you are suffering from knee pain or have recently experienced a knee injury, you need the expert advice of South County, 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, customized care of your Axes physical therapist. Contact us today to schedule an appointment or discover the knee injury treatment location nearest you.