Your knee is critical for weight-bearing, balance, and movement. If your knee suddenly gives out, you need to see an orthopedist – which is a doctor who specializes in the musculoskeletal system – as soon as possible for an assessment and treatment.
Let’s talk about how an orthopedic doctor can help you get your knee back, and where you can go in Plantation to see an experienced orthopedist who can alleviate your knee pain and help you regain your full mobility.
How Does the Knee Work?
The knee is a hinge joint, bending in only one direction. It is composed of the kneecap (patella), the thighbone (femur) in the upper leg, and the shinbone (tibia) in the lower leg.
You’ve heard of the ACL, which is the anterior cruciate ligament. This is the ligament located just behind the kneecap that connects the femur and tibia. Right behind this ligament – and crossing it so the two form an “X” – is the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), which connects the same bones and provides support to keep the knee stable. These two ligaments offer some flexibility while also not allowing the knee to bend in the wrong directions.
These ligaments and the other structures within the knee joint are lubricated by synovial fluid. The synovial membrane surrounds the entire joint and produces the fluid.
To facilitate smooth movement and to cushion the knee joint, cartilage covers the bone ends and the inside of the kneecap. “C”-shaped sections of stiff cartilage, called menisci, absorb shock as you stand, walk, and move. Each knee has a meniscus on either side of the knee.
How Does the Knee Give Out?
The knee can buckle if the quadriceps muscles, which are in the front and sides of the upper legs, endure too much pressure and cannot support the stance. Your orthopedic specialist will provide a physical evaluation of your leg and knee, possibly order one or more scans to determine where exactly the injury is located, and explain your treatment options.
Reasons Why a Knee May Buckle
The quadriceps don’t suddenly fail to work for no reason, but rather they are lacking key support in one or more parts of your knee. This lack of internal support may be due to one or more of the following reasons:
This is a common injury, frequently experienced while engaging in everything from basketball to household chores. The tear may be partial or total across the meniscus.
The extent of the injury will warrant various treatment options. A severe meniscus tear may call for surgical intervention, but rest assured this is almost always outpatient surgery.
The anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments in the knee may overstretch or tear. Many times – but not always – pain, swelling, and a popping sound accompany a ligament tear, particularly with the ACL. This is also treated via outpatient surgery if the ligament is torn all the way through.
Wear-and-tear osteoarthritis may degrade the knee cartilage so much that the knee gives out. Pain, swelling, and joint deformity can accompany this musculoskeletal disorder. The only effective treatment for severe knee arthritis is a total knee replacement, but this is also usually an outpatient procedure – so you will go home later that day.
Outstanding Orthopedic Care in Plantation, FL
At Baylis & Brown Orthopedics, Dr. Christopher Brown and Dr. Robert Baylis are board-certified surgeons who are experts in all phases of orthopedic care, including state-of-the-art imaging and surgical techniques. They can provide a proper evaluation and precise treatment of your buckling knee.
Contact our office in Plantation today by calling us at (954) 476-8800, or request an appointment via our online form now. We look forward to helping you get back to your active lifestyle!