ZocdocAnswersThrobbing, tedious and burning pain in right knee; what could it be?

Question

Throbbing, tedious and burning pain in right knee; what could it be?

When I was about 7, I fell and injured my right knee really bad. Couple years later, broke that entire leg. Im 30 now. My knee has always popped like crazy, and feels like it grinds when I bend it. A couple weeks ago, it really started to hurt and has progressively gotten worse. It feels like it is on fire, as well. There was no recent injury; i just woke up with the pain one day. What could be going on?

Answer

Thank you for this interesting question. In order to offer an accurate diagnosis, I would need to review your entire medical history and perform a thorough physical exam, including a knee exam. I would also need to review the details of any prior imaging studies of your leg. Only after collecting this information would it be possible to make an accurate diagnosis. Therefore, I strongly encourage you to see an orthopedic surgeon to discuss this further. The knee is a complex joint with many structures that can be injured and cause pain. Given your prior injuries, it is possible you are suffering from knee osteoarthritis. This refers to breakdown of the cartilage cushioning the joint leading to abnormal wear and tear on the bones of the joint. This is a progressive disease that often requires physical therapy, analgesics, or even joint replacement to treat. You may have suffered a tear of the meniscus, or cartilage cushioning the joint. This can cause pain and often requires surgery for treatment. Injury to one of the ligaments of the knee, such as the ACL, MCL, or PCl, can lead to knee pain. Again, I strongly encourage you to discuss these possibilities with an orthopedic surgeon.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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