People in Texas who must stand or walk frequently during the workday rely on several muscles, bones and joints in their legs to provide this mobility, and the knees bear much of the burden. In fact, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons notes that a person’s knee is among the easiest joints to injure, and these injuries send more people to the doctor than most other complaints.
A knee’s predisposition to accidents may be in part because it is the body’s largest joint, and one of the most complex. It includes the tendons that connect the muscles of the legs to the joint, the ligaments that connect the bones, the cartilage, and the leg bones, themselves, including the kneecap.
According to eMedicineHealth, the ligaments, tendons and muscles are particularly vulnerable to being twisted or stretched in ways that cause damage. Because these are so closely linked, the harm from a sprain or strain may not be limited to one structure. So, for example, a torn ligament may also damage the cartilage.
It may be simple to link a sudden blow to pain and swelling, but sometimes the joint pain may come and go, making it more difficult to identify the origin of the injury. If there is swelling and redness, or the knee is much warmer than the surrounding area, a person may benefit from medical attention. At times, avoiding any unnecessary use of the knee, elevating the leg, wearing a brace and applying ice may be enough to allow the issue to heal. However, a person with a knee injury may require physical therapy, or even surgery.