Diseases and Conditions
Knee pain is one of the most common causes for a visit to an orthopedic physician. Recent surveys show that nearly a third of adults report at least some knee pain.
Generally, there are two types of pain, acute and chronic.
- Acute or severe knee pain comes on suddenly, usually the result of an injury or trauma.
- Ongoing or chronic knee pain is most often associated with arthritis, gout or infection.
To understand knee pain, it is helpful to understand the knee itself. Your knee consists of the lower end of the thighbone (femur), which forms a hinge with the upper shinbone or tibia. The kneecap (patella) slides in a groove on the end of the femur. Large ligaments connect the bones and help control motion and brace against abnormal types of movement. The meniscus, or cartilage between the thighbone and shinbone, provides a cushion against shock.