Your knee, which is a complex intersection of bones, muscles, joints and tendons, is vulnerable to many syndromes and diseases, including arthritis. It's quite common that orthopedic doctors, or orthopedists, would treat this problem in older patients.
Arthritis comes in three main forms:
Osteoarthritis — also called degenerative arthritis — starts with inflammation in the joints that leads to breakdown and loss of cartilage. The most common form of arthritis, osteoarthritis plagues millions of Americans.
Rheumatoid arthritis involves an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation to the joints and eventual deterioration and deformity.
Post-traumatic arthritis, a type of joint wear and tear, results from physical injury or trauma to the cartilage or bone.
Orthopedic doctors who specialize in knees and hips say common symptoms of arthritis in these joints include pain, stiffness and swelling, which often worsen after activity. Many people experience a locking of the knee or an inability to move the knee at all. They may also experience a buckling effect where their knee joint collapses, putting them at risk of falling.
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Patellofemoral pain syndrome affects the kneecap — the patella — and causes the cartilage to weaken and wear thin. The most obvious symptoms of patellofemoral arthritis are pain and an audible cracking in the knee.
Kneecap bursitis, or prepatellar bursitis, cause the fluid-filled sac in the kneecap, the bursa, to become swollen and inflamed. This can occur because of rheumatoid arthritis, gout, kneeling a great deal and landing directly on your knee when falling, as happens in sports. With bursitis, your knee will appear swollen and warm, and you'll often experience pain during activity.