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What are the 3 Most Common Types of Knee Specialists for Knee Pain?

February 24, 2023

According to many knee specialists, several factors can contribute to knee pain, which is fairly frequent. Everyone can feel knee discomfort, regardless of age. Young people frequently have knee discomfort as a result of an injury. Knee discomfort in the elderly and older adults may be brought on by arthritis or general wear and tear.

A trip to the knee specialist is necessary for persistent knee pain. Your body uses pain to let you know when something is amiss. Here are a few indications that knee pain requires a visit to a knee specialist.

Signs It's Time To Go To Knee Specialists For Knee Pain

If you encounter any of the following, especially following an occurrence like an accident sustained while participating in sports, you may want to see a knee injury specialist:

Knee specialists can help with knee discomfort.
  • Redness, warmth, and tenderness in the knee
  • Severe pain
  • Significant swelling
  • Not being able to bear weight on your affected leg
  • Fever
  • Physical deformity in the area

A degenerative issue may manifest as chronic knee pain that is not severe enough to necessitate a trip to the ER or urgent care. One of the most prevalent disorders affecting the knee, osteoarthritis, is brought on by aging-related changes in the protecting cartilage of joints. Osteoarthritis is a progressive condition; therefore, it will keep getting worse. You should consult a knee specialist if you need to use painkillers for knee pain more frequently than a few times a month.

Also, if you have knee pain, stiffness, edema, or a restricted range of motion, contact a knee specialist. These are indicators of an injury or condition. Many overlook these symptoms, especially as they age, believing it is a normal part of aging. Numerous therapy options might lessen or get rid of knee discomfort.

What Factors Lead To Knee Pain

Knee injuries can take many different forms. The ten most frequent knee injuries are:

1. Fractures

A fracture can occur in any bones near or in the knee. The patella or kneecap is the joint bone that breaks the most frequently.

Most knee fractures are brought on by high-impact trauma, such as a fall or automobile accident. Taking a bad step or falling might cause knee fractures in those with underlying osteoporosis.

2. Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries

The front of the knee's anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) provides the joint with essential stability. ACL injuries can be severe and necessitate surgery.

ACL injuries are rated from one to three on a scale. A grade 1 sprain is minor ACL damage, but a grade 3 tear is a total tear.

ACL injuries are common among athletes who play contact sports like football or soccer. Yet, this ailment is not solely brought on by contact sports.

A tear in the ACL can result from a poor landing after a jump or from quickly changing the direction of motion.

3. Dislocation

The knee might dislocate when the knee's bones are not in the right positions and alignment.

One or more bones may move out of position in a dislocated knee. A knee dislocation can be brought on by structural defects or traumas, such as auto accidents, slips & falls, and contact sports.

4. Meniscal Tears

People most likely refer to a meniscal tear when discussing torn cartilage in the knee. Between the thighbone and the shinbone are two stretchy cartilage wedges known as the menisci. During physical activity, these cartilage fragments are susceptible to unexpected tears. They could age-relatedly start to rip.

Degenerative meniscus tears occur when the meniscus tears as a result of aging naturally.

You can hear or feel a snap in your knee if your meniscus tears suddenly. Throughout the following few days after the initial injury, pain, edema, and tightness may get worse.

5. Bursitis

The bursae are tiny sacs filled with fluid that cushion the knee joints and provide a smooth surface for tendons and ligaments to glide over.

With repetitive pressure from kneeling or misuse, these sacs may expand and become irritated. Bursitis is the term for this.

The majority of bursitis cases are mild and manageable with self-care. But, in some circumstances, it may be necessary to provide antibiotics or perform an aspiration—a procedure that involves removing the extra fluid with a needle.

6. Tendonitis

Patellar tendinitis is the medical term for tendonitis or inflammation of the knee. The tendon that attaches your kneecap to the shinbone has been hurt.

Running, jumping, and other physical activities require the knee to be extended by the patellar tendon in conjunction with the front of the thigh.

Tendonitis, often known as jumper's knee, is prominent in athletes that jump a lot. Yet, tendinitis can occur in everyone who engages in physical activity.

7. Tendon Tears

Soft tissues called tendons attach muscles to bones. The patellar tendon in the knee is frequently damaged.

Athletes who engage in physical activity frequently damage or overstretch their tendons. A tendon tear could also be brought on by a fall or direct blow.

Tendon tears can also be treated by knee specialists.

8. Collateral Ligament Injuries

The thighbone is joined to the shinbone by collateral ligaments. A common issue for athletes, especially those in contact sports, is an injury to these ligaments.

Collateral ligament tears frequently result when one person or object collides or is directly struck by another.

9. Iliotibial Band Syndrome

The iliotibial band syndrome affects long-distance runners frequently. It results from friction between the outside of the knee joint and the iliotibial band situated on the outside of the knee.

Usually, the knee pain begins as a mild inconvenience. A runner may eventually need to take a break from running to allow the iliotibial band to heal.

10. Posterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries

In the rear of the knee is the posterior cruciate ligament. This one is one of the several ligaments that join the thighbone to the shinbone. This ligament prevents the shinbone from recoiling excessively.

A strong force must be applied while the knee is bent to injure the posterior cruciate ligament. When someone falls forcefully onto a bent knee or is involved in an accident that strikes the knee while it is bent, this force frequently occurs.

Choosing a Doctor for Knee Pain

Knee specialists can treat knee issues like arthritis, rips, or dislocations. You are probably looking for a specialist specializing in the knee if you have persistent knee discomfort or injured your knee. Here are the kinds of knee specialists who can help with your condition:

Occupational Surgeons

Orthopedic surgeons are specialists in caring for your musculoskeletal system, which includes the joints, bones, muscles, and tissues that support them. Although orthopedic surgeons conduct surgery on the musculoskeletal system when necessary, they will first attempt to treat your knee discomfort nonsurgically, if suitable, such as with physical therapy or pain-relieving injections.

Several orthopedic surgeons have further training in a particular body part, such as the knee joint. Finding an orthopedic surgeon specializing in treating knees is likely used if you are experiencing severe knee arthritis.

Sports Medicine Physicians

A sports medicine doctor can effectively treat your knee discomfort or damage if you are physically active. Doctors specializing in sports medicine have received extensive training in diagnosing, treating, and preventing injuries.

This is a great method for non-athletes because they know how to deal with musculoskeletal discomfort and injuries in a way that enables an athlete to return to their sport as soon as feasible. An athlete is not required to visit a sports medicine doctor.

To help you get your knee back in shape, a sports medicine doctor could advise that you work with a physical therapist, athletic trainer, or other medical specialists.


Rheumatoid arthritis may cause knee discomfort if accompanied by other symptoms, including fever, rash, and exhaustion (RA). A rheumatologist is a medical professional that focuses on inflammatory autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and scleroderma, so they can assess your knee discomfort and offer medication to relieve it.

A rheumatologist can help with your joint pain and other symptoms if you have a relative (parent, grandparent, sibling) with rheumatoid arthritis or another ailment affecting the musculoskeletal system.

How is Knee Pain Treated?

Knee pain can be treated in several ways.

Several treatments may be necessary depending on the nature of the damage and the source of the knee discomfort. The knee will usually mend over time in strain or overuse injuries with rest and ice.

The course of treatment may also include using medicine to reduce pain and inflammation. A person usually needs to take a break for a while.

Tears or other trauma-related injuries may need bracing, surgery, or the knee being popped back into place. After surgery, a patient is likely unable to utilize their knee and may require crutches or a wheelchair to recover.

Physical therapy could occasionally be required to help someone restore motion and strength in their knee and leg.


Although it is not always possible to prevent knee injuries, one can take safety measures to lower the risk. For instance, those who run or participate in sports should wear the proper footwear and safety gear.

If someone experiences iliotibial band syndrome or overuse injuries, they should consider cutting back on their running mileage.

The smaller leg muscles are also strengthened by some activities, which may assist in preventing injuries. Finally, stretching before and after exercise can aid in avoiding knee injuries.

Do you need reliable and world-class knee specialists to help you with your knee pain or discomfort? Contact us today!

© 2024, John Hibbitts, M.D. All Rights Reserved.