Welcome to Peak Sports and Spine Physical Therapy. We are your Physical Therapist Specialists on the East Side and North Seattle!
An injury to the ACL is one of the most common injuries to the knee. This ligament prevents the lower leg from moving forward on the upper leg. The mechanism of injury is from a twisting motion when the foot is firmly planted. The degree of severity ranges from a mild stretch of the fibers (Grade I) to complete rupture of the ligament (Grade III). The individual may feel or hear a “pop” with associated swelling. The individual may also report a feeling of “giving out” to the knee, limiting the function of the knee. Most ACL tears end up with surgery, but the non-operative treatment is a lot of strengthening with proper form and mechanics through the leg to get the surrounding muscles as strong as possible to take over for the laxity of the ligament.
Patella Femoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS) is known as general knee pain that presents around the kneecap. This can be caused by an acute injury, muscle imbalances, walking abnormalities, or misalignment of the kneecaps. Typical causes of pain is with walking, stairs, squatting, prolonged sitting. Physical therapy can address muscle imbalances and acute symptoms, as well as recommend proper footwear to maximize proper walking mechanics.
Other general non specific pain through the knee that can come and go depending on the activities you are performing is Osteoarthritis through the joint surfaces. A specific strengthening program is used to be able to take pressure off the joint and not have as much pain while walking, standing, and bending.
With the more active lifestyle we lead in to later years, we tend to get more arthritis through the joints. Just because you have arthritis, does not mean you need a total joint replacement, but when it is needed, it can make a life altering change to your daily function. The joint surfaces of your tibia, femur, and patella are replaced. The recovery will consist of increasing the motion through the knee. Strength and stability is also a big part of getting not just the muscles around the knee, but the rest of the lower leg and entire body as healthy as possible so you can return to your normal functional level without pain.
Where ever there are strong muscles that help to move the body, the tendons that attach those muscles to the bone can get irritated. At the knee, the 2 major areas of irritation that can cause tendonitis symptoms are the patella tendon, the tendon that connects the kneecap to the tibia bone. The other area is the tendon that connects the quadriceps muscle to the kneecap, or the quadriceps tendon. Both areas can get inflamed with a lot of stress and force through them with activities like jumping, cutting, and running. Treatments help to reduce the inflammation, and loosen any scar tissue through the tendons, and increase the strength and control of the musculature it connects.
There are a number of different types of surgeries that can be performed on the knee, not just ACL reconstruction or total joint replacements. Meniscus, joint surface, MCL, PCL, LCL can all be surgically fixed if problematic. The way your body recovers is based on you and what was performed. Everyone recovers differently, but with certain surgical procedures, there are very specific protocols to follow as to disrupt anything that was done in surgery. Physical therapists are equipped to work with any knee surgery, and to guide a specific plan to you in order to get you back to the sport or activity of your choice.