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ABSTRACT: Joint injection of the hip and knee regions is a useful diagnostic and therapeutic tool for the family physician. In this article, the injection procedure for the greater trochanteric bursa, the knee joint, the pes anserine bursa, the iliotibial band, and the prepatellar bursa is reviewed. Indications for greater trochanteric bursa injection include acute and chronic inflammation associated with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, repetitive use, and other traumatic injuries to the area. For the knee joint, aspiration may be performed to aid in the diagnosis of an unexplained effusion and relieve discomfort caused by an effusion. Injection of the knee can be performed for viscosupplementation or corticosteroid therapy. Indications for corticosteroid injection include advanced osteoarthritis and other inflammatory arthritides, such as gout or calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease. Swelling and tenderness of pes anserine or prepatellar bursae can be relieved with aspiration and corticosteroid injection. Persistent pain and disability from iliotibial band syndrome respond to local injection therapy. The proper technique, choice and quantity of pharmaceuticals, and appropriate follow-up are essential for effective outcomes.
ABSTRACT: Pigmented villonodular synovitis is an uncommon disease that remains a diagnostic challenge. Presenting complaints commonly involve one joint, most often the knee or hip. Symptoms of pain and swelling characteristically have an insidious onset and are slowly progressive. The physical examination may be completely normal. Radiographs of the knee may appear normal or may show a periarticular soft tissue density, expansion of the suprapatellar pouch and local osseous changes confined to the patellofemoral articulation. Radiographs of the hip may show erosions in the head and neck of the femur and acetabulum. Magnetic resonance imaging usually demonstrates key diagnostic features, which include joint effusion, elevation of the joint capsule, hyperplastic synovium and low signal intensity resulting from hemosiderin deposition. The diagnosis of pigmented villonodular synovitis is confirmed by biopsy, and the treatment of choice is synovectomy.
ABSTRACT: Family physicians frequently encounter patients with knee pain. Accurate diagnosis requires a knowledge of knee anatomy, common pain patterns in knee injuries, and features of frequently encountered causes of knee pain, as well as specific physical examination skills. The history should include characteristics of the patient's pain, mechanical symptoms (locking, popping, giving way), joint effusion (timing, amount, recurrence), and mechanism of injury. The physical examination should include careful inspection of the knee, palpation for point tenderness, assessment of joint effusion, range-of-motion testing, evaluation of ligaments for injury or laxity, and assessment of the menisci. Radiographs should be obtained in patients with isolated patellar tenderness or tenderness at the head of the fibula, inability to bear weight or flex the knee to 90 degrees, or age greater than 55 years.
ABSTRACT: Methods of preventing and treating knee injuries have changed with the rapid development and refinement of knee braces. Prophylactic knee braces are designed to protect uninjured knees from valgus stresses that could damage the medial collateral ligaments. However, no conclusive evidence supports their effectiveness, and they are not recommended for regular use. Functional knee braces are intended to stabilize knees during rotational and anteroposterior forces. They offer a useful adjunct to the treatment and rehabilitation of ligamentous knee injuries. Patellofemoral knee braces have been used to treat anterior knee disorders and offer moderate subjective improvement without significant disadvantages. Additional well-designed studies are needed to demonstrate objectively the benefits of all knee braces. Knee braces should be used in conjunction with a rehabilitation program that incorporates strength training, flexibility, activity modification and technique refinement.
ABSTRACT: Knee effusions may be the result of trauma, overuse or systemic disease. An understanding of knee pathoanatomy is an invaluable part of making the correct diagnosis and formulating a treatment plan. Taking a thorough medical history is the key component of the evaluation. The most common traumatic causes of knee effusion are ligamentous, osseous and meniscal injuries, and overuse syndromes. Atraumatic etiologies include arthritis, infection, crystal deposition and tumor. It is essential to compare the affected knee with the unaffected knee. Systematic physical examination of the knee, using specific maneuvers, and the appropriate use of diagnostic imaging studies and arthrocentesis establish the correct diagnosis and treatment.
ABSTRACT: Knee osteoarthritis is a common but often difficult problem to manage in primary care. Traditional nonsurgical management, consisting of lifestyle modification, physical therapy and pharmacologic therapy (e.g., analgesics, anti-inflammatory medications), is often ineffective or leaves residual symptoms. Viscosupplementation is a newly available option for patients with symptomatic knee osteoarthritis that involves a series of intra-articular injections of hyaluronic acid. The exact mechanism of action is unclear, although increasing the viscoelasticity of the synovial fluid appears to play a role. Clinical experience and studies of the two hyaluronic acid products available, hyaluronan and hylan G-F 20, are inconclusive but seem to indicate beneficial effects with minimal adverse reactions in a significant number of patients. The exact indications for viscosupplementation are still evolving, but it currently can be considered for use in patients who have significant residual symptoms despite traditional nonpharmacologic and pharmacologic treatments. In addition, patients who are intolerant of traditional treatments (e.g., gastrointestinal problems related to anti-inflammatory medications) can be considered for these injections. Family physicians with the ability to perform intra-articular knee injections should consider them an option in patients with symptomatic knee osteoarthritis.
Lateral Knee Pain after Aerobic Exercise - Photo Quiz
Persistent Anterior Knee Pain - Photo Quiz
Knee Joint Aspiration and Injection - Article
ABSTRACT: Knee joint aspiration and injection are performed to aid in diagnosis and treatment of knee joint diseases. The knee joint is the most common and the easiest joint for the physician to aspirate. One approach involves insertion of a needle 1 cm above and 1 cm lateral to the superior lateral aspect of the patella at a 45-degree angle. Once the needle has been inserted 1 to 1½ inches, aspiration aided by local compression is performed. Local corticosteroid injections can provide significant relief and often ameliorate acute exacerbations of knee osteoarthritis associated with significant effusions. Among the indications for arthrocentesis are crystal-induced arthropathy, hemarthrosis, unexplained joint effusion, and symptomatic relief of a large effusion. Contraindications include bacteremia, inaccessible joints, joint prosthesis, and overlying infection in the soft tissue. Large effusions can recur and may require repeat aspiration. Anti-inflammatory medications may prove beneficial in reducing joint inflammation and fluid accumulations.
Painter's Knee? - Photo Quiz