Traumatic Knee Injuries
- Posted on: Feb 1 2017
Dr. Mollins, Brooklyn’s premier accident specialist, has been in practice for close to 30 years. In his downtown office, he will often diagnose and treat traumatic knee pain. Knee injuries that result from trauma can be extremely painful, are often disabling, and must be treated as expeditiously as possible to avoid serious, long-term damage. Some examples of traumatic knee injuries are as follows:
- Fractures – The most common broken bone around the knee is the patella. The ends of the femur and tibia where they meet to form the knee joint can also be fractured. Many fractures around the knee are caused by high energy trauma, such as falls and motor vehicle accidents.
- Dislocation – A dislocation occurs when the bones of the knee are out of place, either completely or partially. In people who have normal knee structure, dislocations are most often caused by high energy trauma, i.e., motor vehicle accidents.
- Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injuries – Changing direction rapidly or landing from a jump incorrectly can tear the ACL (this is common in slip and fall accidents and construction accidents). About half of all injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament occur along with damage to the other structures in the knee, such as articular cartilage, meniscus, or other ligaments.
- Posterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries – The posterior cruciate ligament is often injuried from a blow to the front of the knee while the knee is bent. This often occurs in motor vehicle crashes. Posterior cruciate ligament tears tend to be tears with the potential to heal on their own.
- Collateral Ligament Injuries – The injuries are usually caused by a force that pushes the knee sideways. These are often contact injuries (often these occur at the workplace). Injuriess to the MCL are usually caused by a direct blow to the outside of the knee. Trauma to the inside of the knee that push the knee outwards may injure the lateral collateral ligament.
- Meniscal Tears – Sudden meniscal tears often happen at the workplace. Work accidents may cause twisting, cutting, or pivoting of the knee joint. Meniscal tears may also occur as a result of arthritis or aging. Just an awkward twist when getting up from a chair (a common on the job injury) may be enough to cause a tear.
- Tendon Tears – The quadriceps and patella tendons can be stretched and torn. Falls, direct force to the front of the knee, and landing awkwardly from a jump (again, often injuries that happen on the job and/or slip and falls) are common causes of knee tendon injuries.
When Dr. Mollins evaluates a patient involved in an accident that has sustained a knee injury, he first takes a very concise history. He will then perform a comprehensive physical examination. Often back pain (like a pinched nerve) can mimic knee pain so it is very important to make a proper diagnosis. Once it is determined that the patient has sustained a knee injury, he will refer that patient to a Board Certified orthopedist. Our referred knee specialist (orthopedist) will utilize the most modern techniques to diagnose and treat the knee injury. Hopefully, the knee can be treated conservatively (utilizing medication and/or rehabilitative medicine which includes physical therapy and exercise). If surgery is necessary, all referral orthopedists are highly competent with years of experience. Remember all doctors are workers compensation certified, so any injury sustained on the job can be treated at no cost to the patient. If that patient is unable to work then he/she will be compensated for lost wages (thru workers compensation) until physically able to return to work.