What causes pain on the inside of knee? What are the symptoms you should expect? Is it an injury or some disease and/or condition causing it?
Medial or pain on the inside of knee can be due to numerous reasons. The pain may have gradual or sudden onset. In case it is sharp, there can be restricted movements that can affect the nights of sleep.
Learn more about it including the various causes, symptoms, diagnosis, Treatments as well as preventions.
What causes it?
Generally, sudden knee pain normally develops after overusing or injuring it. Although sometimes it may be mild that you can easily manage them at home, severe knee pain must be attended to by General Practitioner (GP) who happens to be a medical doctor who treats severe and chronic illnesses and provides precautionary care and health-oriented education to patients.
I would also like to bring to your attention that, knee joints are usually vulnerable to damage and pain since they take the full weight of the body as well as extra forces experienced during running, jumping or general body movement.
The vulnerability of experiencing pain inside or general knee pain sometimes increases with age. One is more likely to develop it as he/she gets older. Another susceptible group include overweight persons and sportsmen (particularly sports involving a lot of turning)
In case of a medial one, you should know that unlike many pains in this area, it has slow and gradual onset. “Medial knee pain is a pain on the inside of the knee which usually comes on gradually as opposed to a sudden acute knee injury.”[Sportsinjuryclinic.net]
Here you will find the summary of the most common causes.
Medial collateral ligament tear
A medial collateral ligament tear is the major trigger for this pain. This is when medial collateral ligament (MCL) on the inner side of the knee become overstretched and damaged. This can be due to abrupt twisting force in this area that can potentially damage certain fibers of the ligaments. This condition usually occurs alongside swelling, pain as well as instability.
What cause MCL injury? Well, MCL is a ligament whose function is to hold tibia and femur bones together and reduce the widening gap between them. Therefore, any force on the outer side of the bent knee can cause MCL injury leading to some pain.
The MCL tear has three grades, there can be a condition of only a few fibers tearing, many fibers being damaged or all the ligaments tear completely.
Treatment involves the application of knee brace and doing exercises.
Patellofemoral pain syndrome
Here is another common cause. Patellofemoral pain syndrome develops when patella or kneecap is rubbed against the bone below it. This syndrome can also cause pain in front of the knee as well as outside one. The inside one, can be experienced during walking, running or exercise.
To treat this condition, one needs to begin with limiting the pain and swelling then finding a solution to the reason behind the kneecap rubbing against underneath bones.
Medial meniscus tear
This is a tear of the semicircular cartilage in the joint of the knee (meniscus). Its onset can be acute or gradual (come on over time). It results when the cartilage meniscus is overused or degenerated.
Four kinds of the meniscus tear can happen on the way the cartilage is torn. It is usually accompanied by sudden twisting of the knee as well as pain on the inside it. Swelling may also develop after 2-3 days.
Some of the activities that can worsen this injury include running, squatting, walking or climbing up the stairs.
The best therapy for a medial meniscus tear is exercise and surgery. Your doctor may recommend also other knee joint pain treatments.
What is it? It is a wear or tears on the cartilage lining the medial side of the knee joint. The linked symptoms grow slowly over time. Cold weathers have also been proved to influence its occurrence. This condition has symptoms ranging from mild to moderate to severe depending on the magnitude of the wear and tear of the concerned cartilage.
Below are the three well-known types of knee arthritis:
a) Knee Osteoarthritis
This kind of arthritis that causes a damage the articular cartilage, which is the protective surface of the knee bone. It can also trigger less severe swelling of the tissue in the joins as wells as tissues around the joint.
This type of arthritis can also lead to the formation of painful fluid-filled swelling at the knee back, often called Baker’s cyst or popliteal. The cyst can occur very deep causing pain on the inside of the knee.
It is very common among the aged especially those turning 48 and above. It is aggravated after having prolonged rest, kneeling or getting involved certain activities for longer periods.
Treatment of osteoarthritis
The best treatments for osteoarthritis involve losing weight, taking painkillers, having physiotherapy, reducing joint strains or use of a walking stick.
Gout is a type of arthritis that can trigger sudden severe knee pain. It leads to accumulation of uric acid or other waste products in your body. This condition can form crystals in the joints influencing joints to get inflamed and very painful. If you suffer from gout, you can suffer severe knee pain when resting and at nighttime.
The treatment involves the use of painkillers such as non-steroidal non-inflammatory drugs. Having a well-balanced diet your diet can also be another brainer idea. For more medication, you may see your GP.
c). Septic arthritis (infected knee)
It is a serious condition trigger extremely painful and hot swollen knee. One may also feel unwell or experience some fever. It needs serious medical intervention or response.
Treatment involves draining fluids from this area then administering antibiotic. Orthoscopic surgery can be done too completely clear this infection.
Pes Anserinus Tendinitis
This is the inflammation of on the inside of the knee. The inflammation can also be extended to a bursa (small fluid suck) leading to severe pain. This condition is usually referred to as Pes anserinus bursitis.
It usually has a gradual onset and more prevalent among runners, swimmers and overweight middle-aged women. It occurs alongside other symptoms. It can be aggravated when one is climbing stairs or when trying knee reflection as well as exercise.
To treat Pes anserinus tendinitis or knee tendonitis, you can use corticosteroid injections, ice, stretches, exercise and even sometimes surgery
This is actually a fold in a membrane called synovial membrane that surrounds knee joint and has synovial fluid, which provides lubrication in the joint. It is found right on the inside of the kneecap. It may cause sharp knee pain when one is squatting or doing heavy exercise.
When due to synovial plica can be managed through exercise or by consulting your doctor for proper treatment.
Bleeding into the joint a
This is another factor among the reasons this pain. It is a condition called haemarthrosis and it may be due to serious injuries that tear a cruciate ligament or cause a fracture of the knee bones.
Symptoms include serious swelling, stiffness and bruising. In case of severe swelling, see your GP immediately.
Some of the defined therapies include surgeries and anticoagulant treatment i.e. warfarin.
This may be a cause among teenagers as well as young adults. It is blamed for pain, tenderness, and swelling below the kneecap.
This condition shows up when the lower leg is damaged during growth spout. Nhs.uk confirms that “It’s relatively common in active children who participate in sports that involve running, jumping and repetitive bending on the knees”
To manage this condition one can use ice packs and painkillers. Limiting amount of activities is another good idea. This problem may vanish after a child has completed growth spurts but occasionally it, can persist to adulthood.
Symptoms and diagnosis
Because it has various causes, some of them may not be easily identified. Ensure you get the immediate attention of your GP.
Diagnosis will pave ways for right and proper medication. Don’t try to treat it at home and yet you have no idea on the underlying triggers.
Various triggers will need the various diagnostic test. The common diagnostic test for include physical examination, X-rays, MRI scans, blood test among other tests. To diagnose it, your doctor will carry knee diagnostic test depending on what he/she thinks is the possible cause.
There are also several symptoms related to this pain. Some of these symptoms are sudden while others grow slowly over time. The symptoms may be mild, moderate or severe. Some last for few day or weeks while others can go beyond ten years. Below are the general symptoms of inside knee pain:
- Reduced leg movements
- Clicking or grinding
- Tendering and swelling
- Difficult on straitening legs
- Morning stiffness
- Weakness and effects on sleep
How to prevent inside knee pain
To avoid incurring the expenses of treating it, there are effective methods we can practice to act as wonderful knee pain remedies. Although there are some causes that can be prevented, it is not possible to prevent all causes. In addition, the pain that is made worse by overuse of the knee can be easily controlled by some of the lifestyle changes. Some of these techniques include:
- Adopting to low-impact exercise or mixing low-impact and high-impact exercise to provide the knees with a break.
- Try losing weight
- Try most of the time to use paved surfaces. Rough or rugged roads and walkways are not friendly to your knees
- Be sure to replace your sports shoes frequently to ensure their stability. Worn out shoe may lead to instability hence increasing the risk an injury
- Make sure you warm up before you begin your exercise. This will stretch your hamstring and quadriceps
- Try to avoid sleeping on your side.
- When walking, always keep your body weight balanced on both legs
When to visit your GP
You should immediately see you GP when you develop the following conditions:
- If it the knee seems to be deformed
- If you experience extreme pain when bending the knee or when straightening it
- If you have a locking or painful clicking knee
- If it is accompanied by fever, redness or heat
- If your experience numbness or swelling in your knee
- If your experience extreme pain even if you are not exerting weight on it
- If you experience persistent pain even after caring for it
Your GP will provide the proper diagnosis that will, therefore, help choose the best remedy. This will enable you to get proper treatment and relief for knee pain or ways on how to reduce the pain.