Knee Injury after Soccer Game

Patient

Q: Hello. let me give you a background of my injury before I ask my question. I recently had a soccer game about three days ago, and after the game i had some pain in my knee. I was able to walk on it, but was feeling alot of pain. I didn't remember it hurting during the game because I was not paying attention. That night i started icing it and elevating it. For the first two days it was a little swollen, but i wouldn't say it was that noticeable. I was also walking with a limp, and when i walked down the stairs or up i felt pain in my knee. It feels like the pain is in the middle of my knee as well. I am now 4 days after the injury and the pain has definitely gone down. I can bend my knee all the way, and can walk on it with not much pain, but it def is not healed all the way.The only feeling I get when walking is like it might give out. It feels kind of unstable. My question was whether you think I might have a tear, knee sprain, or if its just a minor injury I can rest. I was thinking about getting it checked out at doctor, but it doesn't seem that serious and i don't wanna spend the money unless I need to. I figured if i could fully straighten the knee right now, and bend it that it must not be serious? I have a soccer game in a week and regularly workout, so I was wondering when I could get back to action. And if i would be more prone to injury if I did play again? Thank you.

Doctor

A:   I do understand your concern of an underlying knee injury. The stability of the knee joint is maintained by the medial and lateral collateral ligaments on the side of the knee and the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments on the inside. There is also the menisci that act as a cushion in the knee joint.
It is difficult for me to comment on the underlying injury without evaluating you. In my opinion the symptoms of instability of the joint you've mentioned warrants for further investigation and examination by an orthopedic surgeon. The feeling of "giving way" or instability of the joint suggests a meniscal tear/injury. If your symptoms are not relieved with analgesics, rest, ice, compression bandage and elevation, I would suggest you consult your doctor. It is not advisable to stress the joint by doing any sports activity or workout.

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