Knee Injury Signs and Treatments


Knee Injuries

Knee injuries are one of the most common injuries to athletes and non-athletes alike. In 2010, roughly 10.4 million patients went to their doctors’ offices due to knee injuries such as fractures, dislocations, sprains and ligament tears. Knee injuries are one of the most common reasons people see their doctors.

Many knee injuries can be successfully treated with simple measures, such as bracing and physical rehabilitation exercises. Other injuries require surgery to correct.

Our orthopedic experts are highly experienced knee specialists. If you have any questions regarding any pain or unusual feelings of instability in your knees, you should schedule a consultation immediately.

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Common Knee Injuries

Your knee is made up of many parts, any of which can be injured. The most common knee injuries include fractures around the knee, dislocation, and sprains and tears of soft tissues, like ligaments. In many cases, injuries involve more than one structure in the knee.

Pain and swelling are the most common signs of knee injury. The knee may also catch or lock up. Many knee injuries cause instability. Instability makes the knee feel like it is giving way.


The most common bone that breaks in the knee is the patella. It is also possible for the ends of the femur and tibia to be fractured. Many fractures around the knee are caused by high-energy trauma, such as falls from significant heights and motor vehicle collisions.


A dislocation occurs when the bones of the knee are completely or partially out of place. The femur and tibia can be forced out of alignment, and the patella can also slip out of place. Dislocations can be caused by an abnormality in the structure of a person’s knee. But for people with normal knee structures, dislocations are most often caused by high-energy trauma, such as falls, motor vehicle crashes and sports-related contact.

Injury to the Anterior Cruciate Ligament

This is very common among athletes. People who participate in high demand sports like soccer, football and basketball are more likely to injure their anterior cruciate ligaments. The ACL can be torn when changing direction rapidly or landing from a jump incorrectly. About half of all injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament occur along with damage to other structures in the knee, such as articular cartilage, meniscus or other ligaments.

Posterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries

The posterior cruciate ligament is often times injured from a blow to the front of the knee while the knee is bent. This mostly occurs in motor vehicle crashes and sports-related contact. Posterior cruciate ligament tears tend to only be partial tears that have the potential to heal on their own.

Collateral Ligament Injuries

Collateral ligaments injuries are usually caused by an impact that pushes the knee sideways. These are often contact injuries. Injuries to the MCL are usually caused by a direct blow to the outside of the knee, and are often times sports-related. Impact to the inside of the knee that pushes the knee outwards may damage the lateral collateral ligament. Lateral collateral ligament tears occur less frequently than other knee injuries.

Meniscal Tears

Tears in the meniscus can occur when pivoting, twisting, changing direction, or being tackled. Meniscal tears frequently occur during sports, but may also occur as a result of arthritis or aging. If a meniscus has weakened with age, an awkward twist when getting up from a chair is all that is needed to cause a tear.

Quadriceps and Patellar Tendon Injury

The quadriceps and patellar tendons can be stretched and torn. While it is possible for anyone to injure these tendons, this injury occurs most commonly among middle-aged people who play running or jumping sports. Common causes of knee tendon injuries include falls, direct impact to the front of the knee, and landing awkwardly after jumping.

Our doctors are Orthopedic Surgeons specializing in minimally invasive, arthroscopic surgery – should you require surgical intervention. Although surgery could alleviate your pain, our doctors will do their best to avoid surgical intervention as many injuries can be treated through conservative measures such as medication and rehabilitation therapy.

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