Knee Instability

Knee Instability

Knee Instability

Knee instability refers to a condition in which the knee joint does not maintain its normal stability and may give way, feel wobbly, or be prone to buckling or collapsing. It can be caused by various factors and can have different underlying causes. Here are some common causes and types of knee instability:

Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury: ACL is one of the major ligaments in the knee, and when it's torn or stretched, it can lead to instability. ACL injuries are often sports-related and may require surgical intervention.

Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) Injury: PCL injuries are less common but can also cause knee instability. They often result from a force applied to the front of the knee, such as a dashboard injury in a car accident.

Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) or Lateral Collateral Ligament (LCL) Injury: The MCL and LCL are ligaments on the inner and outer sides of the knee, respectively. Injury to these ligaments can lead to instability, especially if they are severely sprained or torn.

Meniscus Tears: The meniscus is a C-shaped cartilage in the knee joint. Tears in the meniscus can disrupt the normal mechanics of the knee, leading to feelings of instability.

Muscle Weakness or Imbalance: Weakness in the muscles surrounding the knee, such as the quadriceps or hamstrings, can result in poor joint stability.

Patellar Dislocation or Subluxation: This occurs when the kneecap (patella) either partially or completely moves out of its normal position, leading to instability.

Osteoarthritis: In advanced cases of knee osteoarthritis, the joint can become unstable due to the loss of cartilage and joint degeneration.

Hyperextension: When the knee is forced to extend beyond its normal range of motion, it can result in instability.

Recurrent Instability: Some individuals may have a history of recurrent knee instability, often due to multiple ligament injuries or anatomical factors.

Here at Aspire, treatment for knee instability varies depending on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. It may include:

Physical Therapy: Strengthening exercises and rehabilitation to improve muscle strength and joint stability.

  • Quadriceps strengthening exercises: These exercises help to strengthen the muscles on the front of the thigh.
  • Hamstring strengthening exercises: These exercises help to strengthen the muscles on the back of the thigh.
  • Calf strengthening exercises: These exercises help to strengthen the muscles in the calf.
  • Balance exercises: These exercises help to improve your balance and coordination.
  • Range of motion exercises: These exercises help to improve the range of motion of your knee.
  • Stretching exercises: These exercises help to keep your muscles and tendons flexible.

With proper care and treatment, most people with knee instability are able to return to their normal activities. However, it is important to continue with physical therapy even after you have recovered to prevent further injury.

By Dr. Preeti Sharma (Physiotherapist)