Post traumatic knee pain in a Cheerleader


Q: I am a cheerleader and I was tumbling tonight. I did a punchfront and landed wrong. This pushed my knee backwards and hyper extended it. Im worried that my meniscus is torn. I can bend with no pain staighten with slight pain and walk with pain. Also seems to be a slight bruise under the knee cap. Please help


A:    Sometimes when an ACL injury occurs it associates with a menisci lesion, this might be your case, according to the description of the forced movement of your knee. Acute knee pain after an injury and related symptoms may be caused by damage to one or more of the soft tissue structures that stabilize and cushion the knee joint (ligaments, muscles, tendons, and menisci). Meniscal injuries are a common problem in sports and in young active individuals; they are the most frequent injury to the knee joint. The menisci are C -shaped fibro cartilaginous structures attached to the tibia and their main functions to enhance the contact between the two articular surfaces of the knee: femur and tibia ones. The thick outline of menisci allows for a firm attachment to the joint capsule. A reliable indicator of meniscal lesion is a click or snaps after the joint unlocks, it can be or not associated with pain. A sensation of giving way may occur when the loose fragment becomes lodged for a moment in the knee joint, causing a sense of buckling. This finding should be distinguished from the sensation of giving way due to joint instability (e.g., ACL tear) or buckling secondary to decreased activity of the quadriceps femoral muscle. Spontaneous healing is common because of the rich blood supply in the meniscal periphery. Successful recovery from a meniscal tear is helped by a gradual resolution of symptoms over 6 weeks with a return to normal activity by 3 months. Many meniscal tears heal spontaneously. Also, it can be treated with casting depending of the severity of the tear. With time the symptoms improve. If there is no significant improvement you should get a clinical (orthopedic surgeon) and Imaging (MRI) evaluation of your knee.

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