Knee Fractures

What are Knee Fractures?

The knee is a complex joint which supports the body weight while you perform daily activities.
Fractures around the knee can eventually lead to loss of function, chronic pain and post-traumatic osteoarthritis.

Knee Fractures

What are Knee Fractures?

The knee is a complex joint which supports the body weight while you perform daily activities.
Fractures around the knee can eventually lead to loss of function, chronic pain and post-traumatic osteoarthritis.

Causes and Symptoms of Fractures Around The Knee

Causes 

Knee fractures could be isolated to specific parts of the knee joint or the whole section. Regardless of the nature of the injury, here are some of the common causes:

  • Highly traumatic events like a car accident or a severe fall
  • Sports activities which involve a lot of contacts, e.g. Rugby, Basketball 
  • A direct blow to the knee such as in a fall

Symptoms 

Here are common symptoms of a fractured knee:

  • Presence of severe pain within the knee section
  • Tenderness, warmth and swelling in the knee joint
  • The knee looking deformed
  • Difficulty doing a straight-leg raise or merely straightening your knee
  • Reduced range of motion

How is it diagnosed?

  • Physical Examination 

The doctor will generally ask you questions related to how you had injured your knee and the symptoms that you are experiencing. He will then examine your knee for evidence of bony or ligament injuries.

  • Imaging tests 

Xrays are often required to confirm the diagnosis of a fracture and to assess its severity. In some cases, further scans such as a CT scan or an MRI may help plan further treatment.

Knee Fractures

How is it diagnosed?

  • Physical Examination 

The doctor will generally ask you questions related to how you had injured your knee and the symptoms that you are experiencing. He will then examine your knee for evidence of bony or ligament injuries.

  • Imaging tests 

Xrays are often required to confirm the diagnosis of a fracture and to assess its severity. In some cases, further scans such as a CT scan or an MRI may help plan further treatment.

Knee Fractures

Treatment Options

The treatment of fractures around the knee is largely dependent on the location and severity of the injury.

Keep in mind that if your condition requires surgery, your Orthopaedic Surgeon should always educate you on:

  • Risks of the surgery
  • How to prepare for a surgery
  • What will be required for post-op care

Pain and anti-inflammatory medication
Treatment for knee fractures usually involves painkillers in the early painful phase to help a patient manage the symptoms.

Immobilisation in a cast
Non-surgically treated fractures often require immobilisation in a cast.

Physiotherapy
While the fracture is healing in a cast, physiotherapy can help maintain the muscles around the knee and in the rest of the limb. Physiotherapy after the fracture has healed can also speed up functional recovery and improve the flexibility and strength of the joint.

Fracture Fixation
Displaced fractures often require surgery. Quite often, this involves open incisions, realignment of the fractured fragments and securing them in position with metal plates, screws or nails. In certain injuries, the fractures may be secured with a keyhole surgery.

Disclaimer

Shoulder | Elbow Orthopaedic Group does not endorse any treatments, procedures, products, or physicians that are referenced in this article. This information is provided as an educational service and is not intended to serve as medical advice. Anyone seeking specific orthopaedic advice or assistance should consult his or her Orthopaedic Surgeon.

If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected]

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