Did you know that your knee joint is the largest joint in your body? It’s no wonder that it’s also the most commonly injured joint. Knee fractures can result from various activities and accidents, such as playing sports, falling on the stairs, or even being involved in a car accident. While these fractures may seem like minor injuries, they can be painful and affect your daily routine. Identifying the symptoms of knee fractures can help you to seek medical attention from an orthopedic surgeon when needed. This article discusses some common types of knee fractures to help you recognize and know how to manage them.

Nondisplaced Knee Fractures

A nondisplaced knee fracture happens when the bone cracks and doesn’t move out of place. It’s often less severe and can be treated without surgery. The most common symptoms of a nondisplaced knee fracture include swelling, pain, and difficulty bearing weight on the affected leg.

When diagnosed with a nondisplaced knee fracture, an orthopedic surgeon may recommend rest, ice, compression, and elevation treatment options. They may also advise you to use crutches or a knee brace to support the injured leg and relieve pressure. Physical therapy may also be recommended to strengthen the muscle surrounding the knee joint and prevent future injuries. In many cases, patients with nondisplaced knee fractures resume normal activities within a few weeks or months, depending on the severity of the injury.

While nondisplaced knee fractures may be the least severe type of knee fracture, you should still seek medical attention when experiencing symptoms. Untreated knee fractures can lead to chronic pain, limited mobility, and long-term complications.

Displaced Knee Fracture

You can get a displaced knee fracture when your knee bone breaks and moves out of place. It’s a severe injury that often requires immediate medical attention or surgery to correct. Displaced knee fractures can happen due to high-impact injuries, such as falls from great heights or car accidents. Some symptoms of this type of fracture include severe pain, swelling, visible deformity, and abnormal positioning of the knee.

Treatment for a displaced knee fracture involves surgery. During this process, the bone is repositioned and secured in place, with screws, plates, and other fixation devices. After surgery, you may need to undergo physical therapy to restore your knee function and strengthen the surrounding muscles. Full recovery from a displaced knee fracture can take several months or even years.

Open Knee Fractures

An open knee fracture is also known as a compound fracture. It occurs when the bone breaks and punctures through the skin. It’s a serious medical emergency that requires immediate attention, as the open wound can easily become infected. Some symptoms of an open knee fracture include bleeding, visible bone protrusion, swelling, severe pain, and nerve damage. When treating an open knee fracture, an orthopedic surgeon will perform surgery on the wound to restore the bone to its position. They may also prescribe antibiotics to prevent infections.

The Bottom Line

Understanding different types of knee fractures is essential if you want to stay healthy and active. Whether you’re an athlete, a senior citizen, or someone who enjoys an active lifestyle, knowing the signs and symptoms of a knee fracture can help you take the necessary steps to prevent them. If you suffer from a knee structure, contact an orthopedic surgeon immediately and follow the treatment plan they prescribe. This way, you’ll minimize the risk of long-term complications and heal quickly.