We ask a lot from our knees. They bear most of our body weight, and we expect them to be both flexible (while walking and bending) and rigid (when standing). When our knees start to hurt, it can really disrupt our daily activities.
The knee joint is the most complicated joint in the human body. Because of its anatomical structure—it consists of three bones and two joints—it is extremely prone not only to injury, but also to wear and tear. Some of the most common knee problems we see include sprained and torn ligaments, meniscal tears, tendinitis, overuse injuries, and osteoarthritis.
The bones in the knee joint—the femur, tibia and patella—are capped by articular cartilage, which is a smooth, slippery, nerve-free surface that protects the bones and allows the joint to glide smoothly. With arthritis, the cartilage flattens out and looses elasticity, and degenerative damage to the cartilage will eventually expose the bone located underneath. The resulting inflammation causes pain, stiffness and swelling.