Knee pain....I have to have a CDL license because I drive for long periods, but then my knee starts to throb as I continue to sit. I was in an auto accident and now it hurts when I walk or run. I want to see a chiropractor because it hurts when I climb stairs. Sometimes my knee hurts on the side and at other times, it hurts on the back of my knee.
Do you find yourself describing knee pain to your spouse or healthcare practitioner? If so, you are on the right path for relief. Whether it is from a car accident, driving a school bus, or just playing sports, where your knee hurts explains a lot.
Remember PRICE: protection, rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Chondromalacia Patella presents as pain that is felt just under the patella or knee cap. (Don’t get this confused with pain in the back of the knee; see fig 1). Common symptoms include: pain when driving a car, pain when driving a truck with a CDL, or pain with prolonged sitting and/or walking down stairs. There may also be some swelling. This pain feels deep and achy. As seen in figure 1, there is cartilage behind the patella both on the patella and on the femur (thigh bone). Irritation and damage to this cartilage could lead to chondromalacia patella (CMP).
CMP can be fixed. Unlike arthritic degeneration, CMP has a favorable outcome. First, the inflammation needs to subside. Exercises such as walking on a flat surface (no ups or downs) and swimming have been shown to help. These types of activities avoid the stresses which caused CMP to present itself. Strategically placed strapping and bracing would be recommended to stabilize the knee joint. Finally, some exercises for strengthening which Active Health Chiropractic can recommend.
Runner’s Knee (patellofemoral syndrome)
Runner’s Knee presents as pain that is felt just under or around the patella. There is a subtle difference between Runner’s knee and CMP. Common symptoms include: long distance running, pain walking or running down a hill or even down some stairs. CDL school bus drivers as they get in and out of the bus can experience this. People will often grab their knee and hold it (Fig 4). There may also be some swelling. This is due to the “tracking” of the patella. When one extends their leg (outstretched), the patella wants to move to the outside. A muscle (called vastus medialis) keeps the patella in place when extending the leg (Fig 2 and Fig 3).
This muscle may be weak or injured. With proper rehab and exercises which we at Active Health Chiropractic can recommend, this muscle can be retrained to do what it is supposed to do. Active Health Chiropractic will strategically place strapping and bracing to stabilize the knee joint.
Due to the location of the quadriceps tendon, this type of pain presents above the patella (Fig 5). Quadriceps tendonitis is usually brought on by overexertion such as in weightlifting, exercising, and sport activities. CDL drivers often experience this with loading and unloading trucks. Small tears occur in the quadriceps tendon (also known as the patellar tendon) during these types of events. The body, in an attempt to protect itself, induces inflammation. If caught early and treated, quadriceps tendonitis can be healed relatively in a short period of time. However, if left unchecked, this inflammation can result in scar tissue formation thus prolonging the healing process. With proper rehab and exercises at Active Health Chiropractic, this muscle can be retrained to do what it is supposed to do. Strategically placed strapping and bracing would be recommended to stabilize the knee joint and tendon.
Osgood Schlatter is very common in younger children or adolescents. There is a ligament (called the patellar ligament) which attaches the quadriceps muscles and patella to the tibia (see figure 6). This attachment to the tibia becomes inflamed and tender and usually occurs from sporting activities such as running, kicking, and jumping. Strategically placed strapping and PRICE (as described above) offer the best solutions.
At Active Health Chiropractic, Our Physicians have the solution to more than just your back. With professional, on-hand dietitians, health coaches, massage therapist, and Chiropractic physicians, we can focus on your overall health and wellness that will allow you to run FASTER, jump HIGHER, recover QUICKER, and will ultimately achieve your greatest health and wellness goals. At Active Health Chiropractic... We have MORE than just your back!