Knee pain is a common complaint, both in day to day life and in a sports setting. There are numerous different structures within the knee that can cause pain and discomfort and various different ways that injury can occur. Below are three common knee injuries that we often see at our clinic.
An anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear is a fairly common knee injury that can occur in sports that involve changing direction and turning e.g. skiing or football. The ACL lies deep within the knee joint, connecting the thigh bone (femur) with the shin bone (tibia). The function of the ACL is to limit forward movement of the shin in relation to the thigh and also to prevent over rotation at the knee joint. The ACL plays a key part in maintaining knee joint stability. An ACL injury can occur in several different ways, most notably by landing from a jump onto a bent knee then twisting, or landing on a knee that is over-extended. In sports such as football or rugby, direct contact to the knee from opponents can cause an ACL injury. Because of the amount of force that is required to damage the ACL it is not uncommon for other structures within the knee such as the meniscus or other ligaments to also be damaged.
The medial collateral ligament (MCL) is the knee ligament located on the inner side of the knee joint. It connects the thigh bone (femur) to the shin bone (tibia). A knee ligament injury is referred to as a sprain, and this knee injury can occur if the knee is twisted or exposed to direct impact. In collision sports such as football or rugby the ligament can be damaged when an opponent applies a force to the outside of the leg, usually just above the knee, and causes the knee to bend inwards. Alternatively the ligament can be damaged if a player's studs get caught in the ground and the player tries to turn to the side, away from the planted leg. The medial collateral ligament is often damaged at the same time as the anterior collateral ligament due to the similar mechanism of injury.
Runner's Knee is the common term for Ilio Tibial Band Friction Syndrome (ITBFS). Runner's knee is a painful overuse knee injury that affects the outer part of the knee. It is common in sports such as running and cycling. Due to the repeated bending and straightening of the knee the ITB can 'impinge' or rub on the knee, with the friction leading to inflammation. If the ITB is tight, then the friction is increased and a tight ITB can predispose people to Runner's Knee. Typically there is pain located on the outside of the knee joint. This pain may radiate up the thigh or down the outer side of the shin and is made worse by running or cycling activities. Often the pain from runner's knee is only present during Ankle & Foor Painbest approach to take with your treatment. Each client will receive a personalised treatment programme which will likely be made up of a combination of soft tissue therapy, joint mobilisation, electrotherapy, acupuncture and exercise therapy.
To discuss any of these conditions with a physiotherapist please call:
Huntingdon: 01487 773 088
Cambridge: 01223 773 088