knee replacement Hampton RoadsThe knee is a complex joint with many components, which makes it vulnerable to a variety of injuries. In fact, a knee injury is one of the most common reasons people see their doctors.

In most cases, an occasional ache or pain do not require a trip to the doctor. But how do you know when it is time to visit a knee surgeon?

Serious knee trouble can have a great impact on the quality of your life. Here are guidelines outlining three major problems that call for a trip to the knee surgeon.

Chronic pain

As we mentioned, an occasional twinge is usually nothing to be worried about. However, if you are experiencing pain that continues over time, or makes it difficult to perform daily activities, it is a good idea to consult with a surgeon.

Injury or trauma

Most injuries happen while playing sports. However, you do not have to be an athlete to suffer a knee injury. Knee injuries that require professional attention include:

  • Tearing of the ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, which connects the shin and thigh.
  • Bursitis, which is inflammation in the sacs of fluid that provide a buffer to the knee joint, allowing for smooth movement.
  • A tear in the meniscus, which is the cartilage that cushions the intersection of bones.

Mechanical problems

In some cases, mechanical problems make it difficult for the knee to function properly. Some conditions that could develop include:

  • The patella (the kneecap) can become displaced.
  • A piece of bone or cartilage can sometimes break off and float randomly in the joint. Problems arise when one or more of these loose bodies become stuck, preventing normal knee movement.
  • The iliotibial band is a ligament that extends from your hip down to the outer portion of your knee. Overuse can cause the band to tighten and become inflamed.

The sooner you consult a surgeon, the sooner your condition can be diagnosed and treated. Schedule an appointment with one of our excellent surgeons today.