Painful slipping sensation over kneecap after old injury

Patient

Q: I'm a 24 year old female and I do martial arts. I had a knee injury last December where my knee was on the ground with my food up in the air. There was a twisting of what felt like my kneecap and I heard several pops - almost like crunching sounds. My knee swelled up the next day and I could barely walk. It hurt to bend my knee, to sit down. I had sharp pain for a long time. I have no insurance so I self treated at home with ice and ibuprofen.

Three months later, I'm at about 99% again. Still being careful with it, but no pain, weakness, etc. This past October, it suddenly swells up again and I can't straighten it. I've been to a gen. doctor and an orthopedic now. Gen. Doc took an xray and says I have scar tissue and fluid on the knee. Went to an Ortho and he also did an xray. Says it may be cartilage damage or ligament damage, but I'd have to wait until I get some insurance to get an MRI to be sure. He gave me a shot and Mobic to take in the meantime.

Ever since October, it's been hurting, aching, off and on stiffness (that's stopped as of now), and making occasional crunching sounds on certain movements. This past week, I've been feeling a strange weakness in my knee accompanied by a feeling like something is sliding over the front of my knee from time to time when I go to sit down or stand up. The pain with this sliding feeling varies from "Ow" to intense.

It doesn't seem like it's going to gradually get better like last time. It feels like it's getting worse. I'm not sure what's going on in my knee or what I can do or need to do to manage this condition in the meantime before I can go back to an ortho to get an MRI. Do I still just go with ice, ibuprofen, and rest? What else can I do? I’d also love to know what’s going on in my knee.

Symptoms:  Chronic knee pain, "Painful slipping/sliding feeling" over kneecap, general weakness, some feelings of instability
Doctor

A:   Hello. Welcome to Ask The Doctor.
It seems you have got ligament injury of the knee joint.
Now this can be Anterior or Posterior Cruciate ligament injury.
I would advise you to get a MRI Knee joint done.
In case ligament injury is confirmed on MRI you would require Arthroscopic repair of the ligaments.
I would also advise you to do hot fomentation of the knee joint till you get investigations done.
I hope it helps.
Stay Healthy.

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