A knee doctor is most commonly referred to as an orthopedic specialist or surgeon. If you are suffering from pain or have symptoms from a leg injury you should see a knee doctor for advice. Injuries to the knee are very common in athletes and extreme sport enthusiasts and should be addressed if pain or swelling persists for more then 48 hours. Knee injuries if left unaddressed can lead to joint degeneration and possible arthritis.
How to find the right knee doctor
Many sites on the internet have reviews of local knee doctors in your area. A simple Google search can aid you in finding the perfect doctor for your specific situation.
When to see a knee doctor
If you have had any form of trauma or injury to your leg/knee and have moderate to severe pain for more then 48 hours it is recommended to see a doctor. Swelling can shut down the muscles surrounding your knee joint and may cause atrophy. The sooner you get evaluated by a doctor the better. Many athletes who suffer a knee meniscus tear commonly have other underlying joint problems. See our guide on meniscus tear symptoms for more information. Approximately 1/3 of musculoskeletal problems seen by doctors involve knee pain of some sort. Athletes and sport enthusiasts are more prevalent to knee pain and as much as 54 percent of athletes complain of knee pain every year.
What to expect when you see a knee doctor
Generally an orthopedic knee doctor will perform a variety of tests to evaluate your symptoms and come to a conclusion. A medical history exam will help the doctor find out if you have had any prior leg injuries and whether or not those past injuries correlate with your current symptoms. In addition the medical history exam will notify the doctor of past cases of arthritis, gout, or other degenerative diseases in your joints.
The knee meniscus tear exam normally begins with a comparison between your good leg and your bad leg. The doctor will examine the difference in color, swelling, bruising, tenderness, and log other possible aesthetic differences. Based on your situation your doctor may also mobilize your leg into different positions to check range of motion, point of tenderness, and integrity of patella-femoral tracking. Other common tests include;
- The Lachman test – ACL integrity test
- Posterior drawer test – PCL integrity test
- Valgus and Varus stress test – MCL integrity test
- McMurray Test – Menisci integrity test
It is always better to be safe then sorry. Go see your local knee doctor for advice. The best place to find a qualified knee doctor is by searching the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons directory.