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Intermittent, sharp, pain, of short duration on side of knee cap
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Intermittent, sharp, pain, of short duration on side of knee cap

I have intermittent very sharp pain just outside the inner part of my right knee cap. There is no swelling, redness, or sensitivity of the area, and it comes very suddenly, and passes within 5 -15 seconds. The pain is very intense. It can come while I'm immobile, or even sleeping. It doesn't feel like muscle or bone pain. I am a 47 year old male, very thin, and in good shape. I bike outdoors and use an eliptic machine indoors. No running or any other kind of pounding sports (had ACL repair of left knee 16 years ago and it's never been the same since. My orthopedist told me never to run again).
I went to an orthopedist for this pain and he had no suggestions. He checked the mobility and motion of my knee.
I can't find any symptoms like it anywhere on the Internet. I stopped all exercise a couple of weeks ago and it seemed to get better, and then last night in bed it came back, twice within a couple of minutes.
Has anyone heard of symptoms like this?
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1711789_tn?1361311607
Hi there!

Well, without a clinical evaluation it would be difficult to determine the cause of your discomfort/ pain. Likely possibilities that may need to be considered with pain around the knee cap include chondromalacia patellae, tendonitis, bursitis, fractures, patellar dislocation, injuries to the internal knee ligaments/ menisci, infections/ inflammations, arthritis, cyst formation, growths etc. I would suggest consulting an orthopedician for an evaluation and appropriate management. Meanwhile you may try resting the knee with some OTC NSAIDS to relieve the pain.
Hope this helps.

Take care!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi kneepain51. I started having something very similar a few weeks ago; only difference is my pain is right on the knee cap. I hit my knee on something and it hurt pretty bad for about 5-10 seconds and then I didn't have any pain at all until 3 days later in the middle of the night. It was as if I had hit my knee again and it keeps happening since then. The pain is very severe. It has happened 5-6 times in the last 3 weeks, about 10-15 sec. long, always in the middle of the night. I think it can be happening when I extend my leg after being folded for a long time while I'm asleep.

Anyway, my question is, did you ever find out what was happening to you?
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Avatar_m_tn
Wow, I have had the same exact problem and could find nothing online.  I saw two doctors who both looked at me like I was crazy and could find nothing wrong with my knee (although all I got was a cursory exam).  My pains went away after a few months.  This was probably two years ago and they have not returned since.  The pain was awful.  Easily a 10.  I would writhe around for a few seconds and it would be gone.  As you described, it could happen anywhere, at any time.  As you posted a couple of years ago, I am curious to hear if your pain has stopped as mine has, and if you ever got any answers.
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Avatar_n_tn
Same problem started with me about a month ago.  Very intermittent, not every day, no recollection of any injury.  Very sharp, just a second or two of intensely sharp pain.  Can't find anything about it.  If anyone knows anymore, please post.
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Avatar_f_tn
I, too, have had this kind of sharp intermittent knee pain that only happens on occasion.  It only last a few seconds but it is pretty intense, enough for me to grab my knee at the time of the pain. It just happens randomly every few months or so and only last about a day.  It's right under my kneecap.  I haven't had any injuries to the knee so I am at a loss.
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Avatar_m_tn
I have the same symptoms. Incredible, short duration pain that comes without warning, not related to any exercise or motion, frequency of once/day to day and a half   Have any of the people that posted learned more re: diagnosis, treatment etc..? I will see Orthopedic Doctor in a few days and input for that conversation would be helpful.    
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Avatar_n_tn
I too am currently experiencing the same intense sporadic pain directly below my right knee cap. It happened once before while I was sleeping but stopped within a few hours. This time however it has continued past sleeping hours. Short bursts of intense pain whether standing up or laying down. I am 58 yrs old, petite women in good health otherwise. No current strenuous physical activity. Am wondering if anyone on this thread has gotten a diagnosis. I
Would appreciate any comments or feedback.
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Avatar_m_tn
I have about as much of a clue as to what causes this as anyone else on here, but I'm equally curious. Back in December 2012 I began experiencing intermittent sharp pain in my knee (backside of leg where the knee buckles) and it would last only a few seconds and then go away as if nothing happened. It happened at complete random, all detective work led nowhere, for all I knew someone could have been shoving a needle in a voodoo doll of me. After about 4 months it stopped happening for a good while, but this month it's starting to happen again, only worse. Now the pain is almost to the level of a charlie horse, pierces all the way through my knee and lasts more than 30 seconds each time. It happens anywhere from 1 to 4 times every day.
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Avatar_m_tn
Very interesting. I have exactly the same problem you all describe. Haven't seen anyone about it - yet, but beginning to think it is vascular rather than skeletal in nature. Good luck fellow knee sufferers : )
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Avatar_m_tn
It could be vascular but I have a strong feeling it's nerve related. I found this:
http://www.paincommunitycentre.org/article/neuropathic-pain

'paroxysmal pain' pretty much nails it. I have to ask though, is the knee pain your only symptom? I also have a problem with temperature fluctuations in my lower leg (especially foot and usually only when seated) and have a feeling of tightness/discomfort in my hip area on that side, too, but that didn't show up until later. Makes me wonder if the culprit could be compression of the sciatic nerve.
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11909625_tn?1422033775
I started googling because of my symptom and found this thread. I have had same thing sporadically over last several days. Last night it was consistently intermittent, almost like "labor Pains" of the knee, at times one minute apart.Ibuprofen seemed to make no difference. Putting pressure on the area helped, or relaxing through the 5 seconds more or less it lasted. I also have had it during the day, again - sporadically. Shortly after the pain the area is tender to the touch. I have also wondered about a vascular or nerve issue. Has anyone tried wrapping or ice? I may tonight. It is not the aching pain of arthritis, or the pain on stair climbing or activity, for instance. More like a needle/injection. Affects the left side of right kneecap. I am 66 y.o. female, fit and healthy otherwise, but do have arthritis/spur in that knee, which flares up occasionally mainly that pain is on the outer right side of the knee. It is not bothering me now.
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Avatar_f_tn
This has been happening for me as well. It feels like a hot needle piercing just the skin and surface of the left side of my left kneecap. My partner's parents are doctors, and they said it may be a bone spur catching on a nerve or something. I haven't had it looked at, because I feel like the doc would think I was a hypochondriac. The pain comes out of nowhere. I tried to make it happen manually by pressing on it, but it's totally random; laying down, walking, sitting. Especially happens while I'm sitting. Worst pain ever, I can't think of anything else for the 15 seconds it lasts. I was doing school work with papers on my lap, stood up and dropped everything all over the floor because the pain came on and was so intense. I'm a 25 year old female and healthy otherwise!
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm glad I'm not alone - for the last month I've had a similar pain that hits my inner left knee with excruciating pain for 10-30 seconds/5-10 times a day, and has woken me up at night.  I'm a 52 yo F, healthy, moderately active (nothing that would cause overuse or trauma.)  I've never had knee problems before.  Started after I slept on a short couch with my feet up - I might have overextended my legs.  Ice and topical ointment (Blue gel w/Emu Oil, Tiger Balm) help;  heat makes it worse. Not sure if Motrin or Aleve have helped - might be calming it overall but doesn't help with the intense spurts of pain. If this pain pattern continues for much longer, I'm going to see a provider and I'll report back any findings.  Hope we can all get some relief!  
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Avatar_m_tn
I am fit and otherwise healthy 32 year old. I have been experiencing sharp pain just above my left knee at random times and it lasts anywhere between few minutes to few hours.

I usually apply Volini and wrap it up with sprain band and it seems to work until the next occurrence.

Did any of you get it diagnosed and cured? Am planning to go to a Ortho soon but would like to get an idea on how serious it is and do I need to be there at Ortho at the advent of pain or can they diagnose even when the pain is not there?
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