Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Why does my knee hurt when I bend it?"
No pain when I'm resting or just walking a bit. But when I run and exercise I get bad knee pain when I bend it. Does that mean I have a bad ligament?
Your description of your knee pain could be from many different types of problems. Knee pain can originate from problems with the joint itself. The most common cause of joint pain is osteoarthritis. This is where the joint surfaces wear away and bone begins to rub against bone. Joint infections and inflammatory joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, or gout could be a possibility, but this usually causes pain at rest, not just with movement. You could have a pulled or torn ligament. This dose cause pain, but also can result in the feeling of instability. The most common ligament to tear is the anterior cruciate ligament (also known as the ACL). The injury itself is painful, but afterward the pain is less, but the knee feels unstable. Tears or injuries to the cartilage of the knee is also a source of pain. If you pain is tender to the touch on either side, this is a possibility. Finally, if you are in your adolescent years, a condition called Osgood Schlatter's disease is another possibility. The best physician for you to see about these issues is an orthopedic surgeon. After a thorough exam and possibility an x-ray and/or an MRI of the knee, your problems should be figured out.
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