Our Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys Explain Some Important Things You Need To Know If You Injured Your Knee In An Accident
A knee injury can be caused by car accidents, but they can also occur when someone trips or slips and falls on a dangerous surface. Accidents at a work site can also cause knee injury, especially at jobs that require manual labor or repetitive movements that can wear on specific body parts. At times, an injury to the knee can be a minor strain or sprain, but in more severe cases ligaments or cartilage can be torn, and bones can be fractured.
The Anatomy of a Healthy Knee
The knee is a large and complicated joint. Knee function affects the pelvis, hips, legs, ankles and feet. The knee is a hinge joint that is formed by the femur (thigh bone), tibia (shin bone) and the patella (knee cap). A fourth bone, the fibula, reinforces the tibia. Together, these bones provide the foundation for the strength, movement and stability of the leg.
Two pieces of cartilage, the medial and lateral menisci, act as buffers between the femur and tibia. Articular cartilage also covers the ends of the bones at the joint. These pieces of cartilage are kept slippery by synovial fluid. Fluid filled sacs, called bursae, provide further support on all sides by reducing friction and making movement easier. Ligaments connect the bones and provide stability to keep them in place. There are five ligaments in the knee joint: patellar ligament; ACL (anterior cruciate ligament); PCL (posterior cruciate ligament), and the medial and lateral collateral ligaments. The patella, or knee cap, covers these ligaments. An articular capsule wraps around the joint and contains the patella, ligaments, bursae and menisci. Tendons and muscles surround the joint capsule. Tendons connect the bones to the leg muscles. The leg muscles are responsible for knee movement and add to its stability.
Common Knee Injuries Caused by Accidents
An injury commonly caused by car accidents or falls is the torn meniscus. A torn meniscus can occur when there is a violent twisting motion or a rough impact to the knee joint. The ACL and the PCL are the most frequently injured ligaments. Ligament damage usually occurs when a ligament (most frequently the ACL) is overextended, harshly twisted or when there is an impact to the side of the knee. Fractures of the patella (knee cap) or the tibial plateau are also common knee injuries usually associated with a forceful blunt impact to the knee.
Treatments For Your Knee Injury
Ligament strains generally heal on their own with rest, anti-inflammatory medication and physical therapy. However, more severe knee injuries, like fractures, ruptured tendons, or torn menisci all generally require extensive medical intervention, therapy and in some cases, surgery.
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If you have any questions about the accident that caused your knee injury, you can contact our experienced personal injury attorneys for a free consultation by calling (800) 762-9300. You can also get started by simply filling out one of our case intake forms, and we will have one of our attorneys get right back to you.
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