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There are several knee conditions that you can suffer from unknowingly. One of these knee conditions is the hyperextended knee. It is not very common – I guess since most people are unaware of it. However, it occurs and that’s why I thought you should know about it.
What is a Hyperextended Knee?
You must know people with bow legs, right? Well, bow legs curve to the sides of the legs or body. The same applies to hyperextended knee conditions except that in this case, the knee bends or curves out too far backwards.
So, instead of bowing out on the sides, it bows out to the back. Knee hyperextension, might look normal. However, it can easily result into a number of complications including:
Due to these challenges that knee hyperextension might cause, anyone who suffers from this condition might experience daily hiccups. They may face a number of challenges in their movement, sports, and many other daily activities.
However, the above is only experienced in mild cases. Unfortunately, for severe cases, you might over-stretch one or many knee ligaments. This might lead to partial or complete ligament tear.
With that said it is time to take you through some pros and cons the hyperextended knee condition. We will look at the most common causes and symptoms of hyperextended knee among other things.
Hyperextended knee symptoms
The symptoms of knee hyperextension injury vary depending on how far the knee stretches backwards. It also depends on how much damage that has been done on the general knee structure. Based on these factors, the symptoms of any hyperextended knee condition will include:
Pain in the Knee
Anyone who suffers from hyperextended knee injury will experience pain. The pain is often localized around the knee. It can come in form of a mild ache or a sharp pain. The pain is frequently felt at the back of the knee.
Occasionally, it might also come in form of a pinching pain around the knee cap. This is especially common in cases where the anterior structures are damaged including the tearing of ligaments.
Instability of the Knee
Next is the instability of the knee. If you are experiencing a severe case of hyperextended knee, you might feel a little unstable. This is especially true when you are standing or even walking.
You will have a feeling as if your knee wants to buckle underneath your weight. If this happens, it is often an indication that you have a torn knee ligament.
This tearing is often common to the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) and is also a vital sign of knee hyperextension injury.
You may also experience some restriction on the movement of your knee due to fluid build-up around the joint. The movement might further be restricted if the swelling is quite severe. Higher inflammation may also case more pain.
Swelling and Bruising
Another common symptom is the swelling and bruising of the knee. This often occurs when one of the ligaments is partially or completely torn.
Swelling and bruising often occur within a month or two once the damage is done and is often profuse. This is unlike in the case of minor damages where swellings will occur within 24-48 hours.
Finally, we have the popping sound around the knee. This type of sound will only accompany the symptoms that I have mentioned above. This will often crop up at the extreme and is an indication that a knee ligament has ruptured. It happens when the ACL is torn and results in the immediate swelling and instability of the knee.
How to treat a Hyperextended Knee
The treatment of this condition depends on the severity of the condition. Nonetheless, these few pointers might come in handy.
RICE stands for Rest-Ice-Compression-Elevation. In a much more comprehensive approach, you are advised to do the following.
Once you find out that you have a potential case of hyperextended knee injury, you should shelve all your knee related activities and take a rest.
Resting will prevent further knee aggravation. It will help the knee to cool off. Even so, when resting, you should receive physical and use pain and anti-inflammatory medication.
Ice is another popular treatment that will work for knee related injuries. It helps to reduce inflammation and will relieve pain.
You should apply cold ice to your hyperextended knee and leave it there for about 15 minutes. However the ice shouldn’t be placed directly over the knee. Instead, you should wrap the ice in a rag before pressing it gently over the knee.
Compression is mild and often involves the wrapping of the injured knee using some pressure too. It works best with compression wraps and sometimes the elastic support bands. Compression works just as ice and will help to reduce pain and any swelling.
Proper placement of the knee when resting can also eradicate pain. You can use knee pillows to help you raise the knee to the right angle.
Proper elevation prevents fluid retention and maximizes on proper flow of fluids around the knee.
Severe Cases: Treatment
In the cases where knee hyperextension is severe, you may require surgical procedure to fix the problem.
Once the treatment is complete, you should be in the path to recovery. A better way to make sure that you get a quick recovery process is to employ the following:
Hyperextension Knee Braces
Nonetheless, you can also use the best hyperextension knee braces to help. These types of braces will give you the right knee support. They will prevent any form of strain are good at helping the knee ligaments to heal after a surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions
To shed more light on hyperextended knee injury, here are a few frequently asked questions that you can also look at.
What’s the Hyperextended Knee Recovery Time?
The recovery time will differ from one person to the next. However, for mild hyperextension knee injury you should be back to normal within 2 to 4 weeks. In the cases where surgery is required, you can take a little more than 6 months.
How long should you ice your knee?
Knee icing should be done after surgery or during recovery. You can always ice your knee for not more than half an hour. However, there should be a direct contact between the ice and the knee. Instead, wrap the ice in a rag before placing it over the knee.
When is the Hyperextension of the Knee Severe?
You shouldn’t wait for it to become severe. However, when the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is torn and when you hear the popping sound, you will have hit the lowest point. Don’t wait, seek medical opinion early.
If you are experiencing hyperextended knee injury, you should not put more pressure on your knee. The best thing to do is to seek medical advice and the best treatment procedure. Follow this with the use of right support braces and knee related exercises. You will be back on your feet in no time.