Is your knee pain runner's knee?

Before you gear up to get fit in the new year, it's a good idea to get a physical to determine any medical...

Before you gear up to get fit in the new year, it's a good idea to get a physical to determine any medical issues that will affect your plans. Runner's knee, for example, is a common knee pain that affects athletes and can impede your workout routine. Despite the name, the pain can affect not only runners but various athletes who do a lot of knee bending.

Causes of runner's knee:

Even though overuse is one of the major causes, there are many other injuries or disorders that can bring about runner's knee, such as:

  • Repeated bending, which can lead to irritated nerves and stretched tendons
  • Flat feet or fallen arches, which can also lead to overstretched tendons
  • Bone misalignment can cause damage or pressure to joints
  • A fall or direct hit to the knee

Symptoms of runner's knee include:

  • Pain around or behind your kneecap
  • Swelling around the knee
  • Pain when you bend your knee while walking, sitting or running
  • Pain when climbing down stairs

Visit your Atlanta-area doctor for an exam to determine if your knee pain symptoms are in fact due to runner's knee and what the cause might be. X-rays or an MRI may be necessary for a diagnosis.

Treatment for runner's knee generally requires rest to fully recuperate. Your doctor will likely recommend icing and elevating your knee to reduce any swelling. Anti-inflammatory pills can also help ease the pain and an elastic bandage can give your knee extra support as you recover. Once your knee pain is in control, you should discuss physical therapy options with your doctor. Stretching and strengthening exercises can help keep your knee pain away once it's gone. When you are fully recovered you can slowly begin building your workout routine as your doctor recommends.

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