Medial Knee Pain

by Frustrated Runner

I have medial knee pain which wraps around and sometimes down the back of my calf. I have iced it, stretched it, I wear good running shoes and I have taken time off of running. I think I have done everything I could think of. The xrays don't show anything but the pain is there.

I am booked for an MRI in a month's time.

Walking isn't painful but running is.

My GP said it was arthritis but I know it is not, its not an arthritic type pain. When I squat down it becomes very tight and I have to be very cautious going down/getting back up from the squating position. Any ideas what it is or what I should do?

medial knee pain, running tips
Answer by Dominique:
Thanks for your question about your medial knee pain.

It sounds like you have gone, are going through, all the usual steps.

Icing, stretching, taking time off running, checking your running shoes, x-ray etc. he MRI might show something, it might not.

Now, I am not saying this is going to be your answer, but it sounds a lot like what I was experiencing about 12-18 months ago.

I hurt my knee. Not even by running. I was carrying a heavy object, had to take a big step up a ladder and as I did that I got a sharp pain in my knee.

It took almost a year to get to a resolution. I went through all the steps you have taken. Osteopath, xray, MRI, anti-inflammatories, the works!

In the end my sports physician concluded that the medial ligament had been torn or stretched and then healed itself. In the healing process some scar tissue had formed that was still causing some pain.

So the MRI, xray etc all showed up fine, no issues there, but the pain persisted. The solution? He gave me a cortisone shot and I haven't looked back since.

The cortisone shot fixed up whatever was busted in my knee.

Wait for the results of your MRI. If they show up with no obvious damage, then talk to your doctor about the next steps. He will probably refer you a sports physician, who is most likely to consider:

  • Anti-inflammatories - these started to work a bit for me, but I had some gut problems with them and as soon as I made the dosage smaller the pain came back.

  • Cortisone shot - worked for me, but they don't always work, so no satisfaction guaranteed!

  • Surgery - An absolute last resort. Again, you can't guarantee results.

  • So, at least be hopeful that there are several next steps that can still be taken for your knee. It is best treated in the hands of specialists, the knee is a complex part of the body.

    I hope this gives you some hope for a good resolution.
    While you can't run, see if there is any other exercise you can do to maintain fitness and leg strength. One way to remediate knee problems is to make sure that the muscles around the knee are stronger, e.g. calf, hamstring, etc.

    Best of luck.
    Kind regards,

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