Knee Pain

Physical therapy professionals know that knee injuries can be serious and often require a unique approach to treatment.

Knee pain can be a result of injury or overuse.

If you have been suffering from knee pain, your physiotherapist will assess the source of your discomfort by asking questions about how long you have been experiencing it and what activities cause it to worsen. 

After performing an assessment including range-of-motion and strength tests, they will develop a treatment plan that is right for you. Knee injuries are common in runners and athletes who engage in contact sports like football or rugby; however, even simple actions such as climbing stairs can cause knee pain if there is any weakness or instability around the joint.

Type Of Knee Pain and Injuries We Treat

Some of the most common knee injuries we treat are:

Feature OneCruciate Ligament Injuries

Cruciate Ligament Injuries ( ACL Injury, MCL Injury, LCL Injury, PCL Injury ) Physiotherapy treatment for this injury aims to reduce swelling, restore range of motion and regain strength and muscle mass in surrounding structures.

Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL)

The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a key stabilizing structure in the knee and can be partially or completely torn as a result of acute trauma.

Posterior cruciate ligament injury (PCL)

The posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) provides stability in the knee when the knee is bent. Symptoms include swelling, pain and an inability to bend the knee.

Medial Collateral Ligament Injuries (MCL)

The medial collateral ligament (MCL), or inside of the knee.  Symptoms include swelling, pain and tenderness along the inside of the knee.

Lateral Collateral Ligament Injuries (LCL)

The lateral collateral ligament (LCL), or outside of the knee.  This injury can come from impact sports, slip and fall accidents or other sources of trauma, like car accidents.

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome/Runner’s Knee

Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Symptoms are commonly described as irritation under or around the kneecap. 

Patellar Fractures

Fractures  happen when you experience a direct impact to your knee, like in an accident or collision from contact sports.  Depending on the severity of the injury, different treatments are required.

Patella (kneecap) injuries

The patella, or kneecap, is most frequently injured with a direct blow to the front of the shin that pushes it back into its irregular position.

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disease that affects the cartilage within your knees. Treatment for osteoarthritis aims to reduce pain, improve mobility and restore normal joint mechanics.

Torn meniscus

The meniscus is a c-shaped piece of cartilage that cushions the knee joint, allowing it to move with ease. A torn meniscus can occur when you experience direct impact to the knee, violent twisting, or can happen from from stress caused by an irregular gait. 

IT Band syndromes

The iliotibial band (ITB) is a thick ligament that runs along the outside of the leg and knee. A very common overuse injury in athletes and weekend warriors alike.

Knee bursitis

A bursa is a fluid filled sac that are located on muscles and tendons to protect them from rubbing against bone.  Bursa can become inflamed from abuse and can swell up significantly.

Patellar tendinitis

There are many tendons in the body, but the patellar tendon is one of the strongest. It connects the muscles in your thigh to your kneecap.  Patellar tendinitis is an overuse injury that causes pain and swelling around the patella

Quadricep Tendonitis

The quadriceps tendon is the part of the quadriceps muscles that attaches to the kneecap (patella). Symptoms are similar to patellar tendinitis and include pain, especially during activities like squatting, running or jumping.

Osgood-Schlatter Disease

A bursa is a fluid filled sac that are located on muscles and tendons to protect them from rubbing against bone.  Bursa can become inflamed from abuse and can swell up significantly.

Knee Pain - Look Above and Below the Joint

The most common knee injuries are a result of a muscle imbalance around the knee. Physical therapists use gait analysis, manual manipulation and strengthening/stretching exercises to correct this problem.

physical-therapy-knee-pain

How Physical Therapy
Helps Knee Pain

Physical therapists often use modalities like ultrasound, electrical stimulation and ice to help reduce pain and swelling during the acute phase of an injury.

Pain Management

Physical Therapists also use modalities like electrical stimulation, ultrasound and ice to help reduce pain and swelling during the acute phase of an injury.

Manual Therapy

Manual therapy interventions like massage and other fascial release techniques focus on the soft tissue structures of the knee, like muscles, tendons and ligaments.

Stretching Exercises

Some of the most common knee injuries are a result of a muscle imbalance. By using strengthening and stretching exercises we can reduce your risk of re-injury. For example quadriceps stretch can help relieve tension around the knee joint, allowing for better healing and less pain with better mobility.

Gait Analysis

Gait analysis helps us to see how your walking may be affecting the daily stress placed on the knee.  Using this information we can make suggestions to minimize knee stress and maximize the health span of your knee.

Strengthening Exercises

Strengthening your leg muscles is vital for a healthy knee, because these muscles help support and protect it. Some examples of strengthening exercises are squats, lunges or step-ups onto a higher platform.

Range of motion

Range of motion, or ROM, (e.g., knee extension) exercises are important, because they help keep the joint moving freely and may prevent further injury or stiffness.

Balance Exercises

With assistance, balance exercises like standing on one leg, with your eyes closed can be a great way to increase leg strength and improve stability around the knee joint.

Mobility Exercises

Mobility exercises like walking knee hugs can help improve your range of motion, which is important for overall joint health.  A physical therapist may also suggest alternative mobility exercises like kneeling or side shifting that won’t put pressure on an injured knee.

Knee Pain FAQ

It is difficult to give an exact time frame as every patient heals differently. During the first week after surgery, patients are usually placed in a knee brace and given crutches to help prevent weight bearing on the knee. Therapy is usually started after the first week or two, but may have to wait until swelling goes down before beginning exercises.

Unfortunately this depends on how bad your tear is and whether or not you are having any other knee problems. With or without surgery the recovery time frame is generally the same: RICE protocol (rest, ice compression and elevation), physical therapy and medication.

After surgery, patients are usually told to wait 2-3 weeks before starting more intense physical therapy. It takes an average of 3-4 months for the body to completely heal from a meniscal tear. 

Please keep in mind that if you have any other knee problems, such as arthritis or a ligament injury, your recovery time will likely be longer.

Generally a patient can expect to have surgery within a week after being diagnosed with an ACL tear. After that the average recovery time is 5-9 months for the ACL to heal.

 

Our Clients Success Stories​

I had to quit the Chevron Marathon halfway because of some serious knee and leg pain. Turns out I had a really weak leg and hips. I worked with Denise and Manny on strengthening my legs, hips, and core. I thought PT was going to be boring, but they made it a lot of fun. It was always a different "workout" for me, they challenged me in ways I didn't think I could be challenged, especially since I'm not just a casual athlete. They sometimes did exercises with me. I highly recommend Impact Care Therapy, you'll get the care and treatment you need, with a great bit of laughter.
Linda Fox
I had a knee injury that would not heal properly. It was months of trying to get it healed and Doctors appts with steroid shots as well. Nothing was working. So I went to Dr. Miano and she showed me the reason it was not healing properly. It was due to my weak back and my injured knee trying to compensate for it. After a few sessions, not only was my back stronger but my knee was perfectly fine. Thank you so much Dr. Miano! You have changed my life for sure! And with only 15 mins a day, I can continue to strengthen my back and knee.
Rubi Reyes-Fuentez
By far top of the line therapy. I had total knee replacement surgery on November 30th, and Dr. Miano had me back up to my physical self in 6 weeks. I don't even limp at day 42. I can even go up and down stairs without holding on to railing. My balance is 100% at day 42. My strength is awesome as well on my knee. I would drive up to Houston twice a week from Rockport TX to get my PT. Dr. Miano is by far one of the best in the Houston TX area. I recommend Impact Care Therapy because of the highly skilled treatment that I received, and professional care they offer as well as their quick recovery process. By far the best care I have ever had. I'm back to my work with 110% confidence.
Marvin E
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