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Avatar universal

Knee Symptoms

Last year I worked in a retial store.  My duties included unloading trucks, lifting up to 80 pounds, pulling pallets of merchandise stacked up to 7 feet, and several hours of kneeling per night.  I began to have pain in my knee and thought I had sprained it.  However, a year later, the symptoms are still present, and become worse with increased standing, kneeling, or bending.  Just under the right knee cap swells dramatically, and is "squishy" like fluid.  It becomes extremely painful.  I have gone to the doctor for this.  I do not remember what tests were run (I believe only an MRI).  He said there was no problem with my knee, but that if I continued in that job, I would have cartilege damage within a few years, that there were already signs of beginning damage.  I did end up leaving that job to care for my mother full time.  After being home with her for a year, I am now working again, at a different job that is much less stressful on my knees.  However, the symptoms have never left, even while not working.  Any ideas on what this knee pain and swelling is would be greatly appreciated!!
5 Responses
Avatar universal
What is your name? How old are you?
Knee pain has many causes, including pathologic processes in the knee and disorders in distant locations with referral to the knee area.
In you case it is the disease of knee which is likely to be affected, as your work involved more stress and strain for your knee.
Can you tell me when this pain is more? Do you experience any grinding, locking, catching, or giving way of the knee?  
Grinding is characteristic of osteoarthritis; locking and catching are characteristic of meniscus injuries and osteochondritis dissecans (meniscus injuries are much more common than osteochondritis dissecans); and giving way is more characteristic of ligamentous injuries.
Are there any positions that make your knee more or less comfortable?
Have you tried anything to help the pain and, if yes, has that been successful? Have you ever had surgery on your knee?
I think you should be seeing an orthopaedician and get imaging done to look for any pathlogy.
The first step is plain radiographs (including weight-bearing posterior-anterior, lateral, and tangential [Merchant] views) of the patella.
Hope this helps you.
Avatar universal
Thank you for your response.   In answer to your questions, my name is Carla.  I am 31 years old.  The pain seems to be more in the afternoon and evening.  I have not noticed any grinding.  However, when it is swollen and hurting, movement is affected.  Straightening it (such as standing or walking) causes enough pain that it does buckle.  If I do get it straightened out, such as sitting with my legs straight out in front of me, then the pain is enough to make bending it harder to do, almost like it is locked.  When my knee is hurting, kneeling (or any position that puts even the least amount of pressure on it) is impossible.  Other than that, no position is more or less painful, but keeping it in the same position (any position) for more than 10 or 15 minutes causes more pain.  I have never had surgery on my knee.  Putting a heating pad on it gives minimal relief.  Pain creams give minimal relief as well.  That is all I've tried.  
Avatar universal
Hi Carla,
You have a nice name and you are pretty young too.
Your symptoms of pain with dramatic history of knee swelling and redness suggests either it is ligament tear or meniscus injury.
Further more your symptom of feeling locked at joints adds to the diagnosis of meniscus injury as locking and catching are characteristic of meniscus injuries.
I think it is indeed meniscus injury of your knee causing the symptoms.
Have you consulted any doctor? Is yes, what does he have to say for this?
If you have not been to any doctor, I feel you should be seeing one soon and get imaging done.
Keep me informed as to what imaging studies has he asked and what is the plan of management.
Do let me know about your decision.
8405610 tn?1397974648
Hi my name is Mandy..I sm almost 39 and I was told I HV plica syndrome. My knee is swollen all the time. I can't see my kneecap. It hurts when I bend it or keep it straight. It is constant pain.and put ice on it and it still doesn't help at all. I have taken pain pills hydrocodone that doesn't help.
Avatar universal
Hello Mandy, Welcome to MedHelp! I am the Orthopedic Community Leader.

I haven't heard or seen (I am a Orthopedic Surgical First Assistant) a patient with Plica Syndrome in a long time. Did you know that Plica is normally evolved into nothing no later than 3 y/o? We have had to "shave" it down in the OR many times (Arthroscopically). It tends to find it's way into the joint, depending on the size and location. I have seen conservative treatment such as NSAIDS with therapeutic exercises. I read somewhere that Iontophoresis and phonophoresis have been pretty successful against inflammation of the plica and synovial capsule. If you would like more info, please don't hesitate to contact me. I try to check MedHelp often.

Best of luck!  JD1963
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