The Pathophysiology of Knee Pain

Knee Pain

In addition, the chronicity of pain in people with OA is increasingly recognized to be related to central sensitization mechanisms [18,19]. In addition, integration of the central sensitization concept during clinical reasoning and patient management should also be included. First, the current understanding on the knee biomechanics is not enough.


The main risk factor for pain around the kneecap is overuse. Activities that put a lot of strain on the front of the knee include jogging, mountaineering, going up and down stairs, and doing squats. Cycling sports can also lead to knee pain – especially if you cycle on hills, mountains or use high gears. In addition to the traditional medical treatments mentioned above, you may also benefit from mental health counseling to cope with the impacts of living with chronic pain. Staying engaged in low-impact exercise and accessible hobbies that bring you joy and meaning are also important.

Knee pain is a common complaint that can be caused by a variety of factors. Understanding the pathophysiology of knee pain is essential for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Despite the high incidence and prevalence of AKP [2] and an abundance of clinical and basic science research, the etiology of the disorder is often difficult to pinpoint. However, it is typically thought to be multifactorial, which can complicate its treatment [3, 4]. The objective of this paper is to analyze the structural and functional changes that accompany AKP in order to define a logical therapeutic approach. This chapter synthesizes our research and clinical experience on pathophysiology of AKP in the young patient. Many people know patellofemoral syndrome as runner’s knee. Often, overuse is the main cause of pain, which tends to be around the kneecap.

This could be a neighbour, relative, friend, partner, doctor, or someone else in the community. These might include physiotherapy, talking therapies and pain management programmes, surgery or injections. A doctor will suggest treatment based on the condition that’s causing your pain. This means you can buy them over the counter, at supermarkets and pharmacies. Low-impact exercise, such as cycling and swimming, can be useful when recovering from a knee injury.

But injuries can happen, and they often involve the knees. But some treatments help reduce the severity of the symptoms and maybe keep the disease from getting worse. Sometimes healthcare providers order a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) test or a computerized tomography (CT) scan. Currently, different guidelines have been developed by multiple academic and professional societies to standardize and recommend the available treatment options (Table 1). Among these, we can find the Osteoarthritis Research Society International (OARSI),13 American College of Rheumatology (ACR)14 and American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS)15 publications.

Causes of Knee Pain

1. Osteoarthritis:

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that affects the knees. It occurs when the protective cartilage in the knee wears down over time, leading to pain, swelling, and stiffness.

2. Ligament Injuries:

Ligament injuries, such as anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears, can cause severe knee pain. These injuries often occur during sports or physical activities that involve sudden movements or impact to the knee.

3. Meniscus Tears:

A meniscus tear is a common knee injury that can cause pain, swelling, and limited range of motion. The meniscus is a piece of cartilage that acts as a cushion between the shinbone and thighbone.

Symptoms of Knee Pain

  • Pain and tenderness
  • Swelling and inflammation
  • Stiffness and reduced range of motion
  • Popping or clicking sensation

Treatment Options

  1. Physical therapy
  2. Medications
  3. Injections
  4. Surgery


Q: Can knee pain be prevented?

A: Yes, maintaining a healthy weight, staying active, and avoiding activities that put excessive strain on the knees can help prevent knee pain.

Q: When should I see a doctor for knee pain?

A: If you experience severe pain, swelling, or difficulty bearing weight on your knee, it is important to see a doctor for an evaluation and treatment.

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