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Are you experiencing pain on the inside of the knee? As with any type of pain, inside knee pain may be debilitating especially since the knee joint is such a critical part of daily movement. Patients may experience pain inside of left knee, pain inside of right knee or on insides of both knees. The good news is that if you are able to isolate the pain to a specific location, such as inside of left knee, then your doctor will have an easier time diagnosing the problem.
What causes pain on the inside of the knee?
MCL Injury - The most common cause of inside knee pain is an injury to the medial collateral ligament (MCL). The MCL is the ligament runs up the inside of the knee joint and it helps stabilize the inside of the knee. MCL injuries typically occur when impact happens on the outside of the knee, which overstretches or tears the inside ligament.
Meniscus Injury - The meniscus is the piece of cartilage that cushions the knee joint as we walk. Depending on where on the meniscus an injury has occurred, a patient may experience inner knee pain.
Other Causes of Inside Knee Pain - Weakness of the muscles around the knee or arthritis may also cause pain on the inside of the knee. There may also be other causes for inside knee pain, but the ones listed here are the most common.
Diagnosing Inside Knee Pain
In order to treat pain on the inside of knee, it is very important to get an accurate diagnosis from your physician. If you had trauma or other injury to the knee, it is important to let your doctor know. Your age and activities may also play a factor in helping determine the cause of inside knee pain, so be sure to let your doctor know about your occupation or hobbies that may be affecting your knee.
Your physician will likely have an imaging test such as an MRI or X-ray to be able to see the structures in the knee and determine if there has been damage to the cartilage or ligaments which may be causing pain inside the knee. He or she can then determine if the MCL or meniscus has been stretched or torn.
Treatment for Inside Knee Pain
Once your doctor determines the cause of the pain inside knee, he or she will be able to suggest forms of treatment.
Treatment varies depending on the severity of the injury. Immediate treatment after traumatic injuries include RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) and anti-inflammatory over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen or aspirin.
If a more serious injury such as an MCL tear is present, then arthroscopic surgery to repair the torn ligament may be necessary. In all cases, physical therapy may be beneficial, because strengthening the muscles around knee will help reduce pain inside the knee both before and after surgery (or even if no surgery is required). Speak with your doctor about all of your options in regards to your inside knee pain.