Tender and Swollen
Hey guys I would really like to start off this week’s injury report with a quick thank you to all who have been reading this special part of the blog.
It really means a lot to me, and I hope it has helped somebody, anybody, out there who has been in pain. Please feel free to send me a quick message on what you guys think about these blog posts.
This week I would like to talk about a small, yet somewhat, unknown knee injury that most people usually have but sometimes masks it as runner’s knee. This knee injury usually happens when your knee swells up, and is warm to the touch usually after a blow to the knee or from excessive work-related kneeling. The injury that I’m talking about is Knee Bursitis.
Mayo Clinic defines knee bursitis as: “…inflammation of the bursa near your knee joint.” Now according to Mayo Clinic your knee also has 10 more bursae that surround it (11 in total) and while any of these bursa have the ability to become inflamed the most common one is the one above your kneecap or on the inner side of your knee below the joint. I am also going to give you guys a definition (from Mayo Clinic) on what a bursa is, please bare with me it is important. “…is a small fluid filled, pad like sac that reduces friction and cushions pressure points between your bones and the tendons and the muscles near your joints.” You will see later on why that definition was important for me to put out there.
This injury, like I said earlier, happens because of excessive kneeling, direct impacts to the knee, falling frequently on your knees, bacterial infections of the knee, or complications from osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis or gout in your knee. You can usually know if you have it by a burning sensation in your knee, swelling (as stated above) or tenderness to the swelled up area. This is where you go to your doctor to get it properly diagnosed.
Once you come back from your doctor with a confirmed diagnosis that you have knee bursitis and he has prescribed you with NSAID’s for the pain (which really doesn’t do much in the long run) and has told you to RICE it (Rest, Ice, Compress, and Elevate) which does help with the swelling. He really doesn’t do much more than that.
So let’s go back to the definition of the bursa:
“…a small fluid, pad like sac that reduces friction…”
Now for this to become inflamed there are a lot of other “things” (and by things I mean factors) that are compensating in order for you to be going about in your day to day and being pain free. Remember your body wants to be without pain at all costs. So we now have to introduce muscular imbalances to the mix, because the only way for us to do anything and take load off something, that is only there as a “shock absorber”, is to work the supporting structures around it (muscles act as guide wires on a bridge, bursa works as shock absorbers, forgive the engineering parlance but it’s the best way for me to describe it).
Now, we have a multitude of different muscles that cross and support the knee (in an around 23 muscles) so trying to pin point which muscle is not firing properly is pretty difficult to do. But there is a way, stay tuned. When you do, however, find that muscle that is not working and “wake it up” (so to speak) you help your knee joint ease off all the stress on the bursa that encapsulates that joint. So in short by finding the muscular imbalance and correcting it you effectively remove any extra stress that is being placed on the shock absorber (bursa).
I am going to try not to give any exercises when it comes to this. Only because there are too many different factors to introduce and that could eventually lead your body to an even worse state that it might be in. So the simple solution that I can responsibly give you is: If it hurts, don’t do it. If it doesn’t hurt, be careful doing it. Better yet contact us so we can find out.
Now I know what your saying:
“I smacked my knee really, really hard and its really, really swollen. The doctor told me the bursitis is really, really bad.”
Well first things first that’s a lot of really’s.
Second, when you smacked your knee really hard your body will try to figure out what is the best solution to stand up, and walk with the minimum about of discomfort, and the maximum amount ease. It likes to be lazy! And this is where the muscle imbalances come into play.
As I stated in last week’s blog post nobody can just look at you and say: “Oh! You know what. It looks like your sartorius muscle is not firing properly. We have to strengthen it.” If a trainer does say that, without proper testing (even then it’s a little questionable but at least there was a viable test done to identify that muscle area) I have one simple solution for you to do.
Say nothing to that trainer. Turn, and run for the hills. Don’t look back. And don’t question it.
Once you have those four simple steps contact us and we will take a look at what is going on with your joints in our free assessment that we are offering for all new clients that want to get an edge over everyone else. Then we tailor make a workout program that fits you. That way you become fitter, faster, and more importantly in a safe manner that your body can take.