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Knee Injuries

Anatomy and Physiology of the Knee

knee injury

The knee joint provides classic flexion and extension hinge movement. The joint is composed of four bones - the femur thigh bone, the tibia, the fibula and the patella, otherwise known as the kneecap.

The junction of all four of these bones is covered in articular cartilage that assists in keeping the friction between the bones to a minimum. In addition to the articular cartilage, the knee contains two meniscuses made up of fibro cartilage which rest in-between the femur and lower leg bones.

These pads of cartilage are vital assisting in the reduction of friction and the expansion of the pressure caused by not only the weight of the body, but, the the various movements that it performs as well.

The meniscuses are joined with the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments as well as the medial and lateral collateral ligaments as the key anatomical knee pieces that are most susceptible to injury. The anterior cruciate is largely responsible for stability between the femur and tibia while the posterior cruciate is responsible for stabilizing the rear of the knee. The medial and lateral collateral ligaments work to protect the knee against inward and outward forces. While these ligaments and the accompanying muscles, tissues and bones do a good job of protecting the knee from stressful forces, they are still susceptible to injuries that occur when movements exceed their stress threshold.

Anterior, Posterior Cruciate Ligament

Anterior and Posterior Cruciate Ligaments cross each other in an X shape and provide stability to the knee when flexing and extending.

Cartilage Injuries and Knee Disorders

Cartilage Injuries are related to damage and/or loss of cartilage that cause debilitating pain, stiffness and swelling of the knee area.


Chondromalacia is damage to the cartilage located under the kneecap and if left untreated can lead to severe degeneration.

Dislocated Knee Cap (Patella)

Dislocated Knee Cap/Patella is usually due to a blunt traumatic impact, or a forceful twisting motion that places the knee under stress.

Iliotibial Band Syndrome

Iliotibial Band Syndrome is related to the iliotibial band becoming irritated and inflamed and causing pain throughout the entire knee area.

Knee Pain

Knee Pain is most often associated with the inflamation, tearing, or degeneration of the muscle, ligaments, or cartilage of the knee.

Medial and Lateral Collateral Ligament

Medial and Lateral Collateral Ligament tears can occur when the lower leg is forced sideways causing the ligament to buckle.

Meniscus Injuries of the Knee

Meniscus Injuries of the Knee are evident by inflammation and pain assocaited with the outside and/or inside of the knee area.

Osgood-Schlatter Disease

Osgood-Schlatter Disease is the inflammation and irritation of the knee area located at the top of the tibial bone.

Osteoarthritis of the Knee

Osteoarthritis of the Knee is the degeneration of the cartilage within the knee joint that is located between the femur and tibia bones.

Osteochondritis Dissecans

Osteochondritis Dissecans often occurs due to a reduction in blood flow to the cartilage in the knee area and to the end of the femur bone.

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome is related to the way the patella tracks and moves along the groove of the femur bone.

Patellar Tendonitis & Ruptured Tendons

Patellar Tendonitis and Ruptured Tendons (aka Jumper's Knee) involve the tendon that connects the patella to the tibia bone.

Plica Syndrome

Plica Syndrome is due to synovial capsule irritation through overuse or injury causing the plica to become thicker and inflamed.