As per reports by the Medical Center at the University of Maryland, pain above the knee cap is a common health complaint. There are a host of causes that may be responsible for the pain above the knee which include thigh muscle pain or associated with referred pain from other part of the body.
The treatment of pain above the knee depends upon the underlying cause. Consulting a doctor is recommended, especially if the condition is associated with persistent pain which continues to worse with time.
What Causes Pain Above The Kneecap?
The region of the upper leg comprises of muscles and ligaments that are located between the knee joint and the hip joint.In addition to muscles and ligaments, the portion also has several nerves, connective tissue and blood vessels which supply to the part. Leg pain above the knee can be generated from damage or injury to any one of the tissues located above the knee.
The thigh bone is the only bone located in this portion of the leg and the fracture, infection or tumor of the bone can also be manifested in the form of pain above the knee joint. The group of muscles includes the thigh muscles, the hamstrings and the groin muscles.Muscle pull, muscle cramps or muscular damage can also be associated with pain above the knee.
Pain Above The Knee When Bending
One of the most important functions of the knee joint is flexion and extension which results in bending and straightening of the knee joint. There are a host of factors responsible for pain above the knee joint when bending. As per the Mayo Clinic some of the common causes for pain above the knee when bending include,
- Bone Lesions: This include a host of bone problems including fracture, bursitis, degenerative joint disease including osteoarthritis, etc. On rare occasions, bone cancer can also be associated with pain above the knee which is aggravated on bending forwards.
- Muscular Problems: The common muscular problems include muscle cramps, muscle strains and other chronic conditions like fibromyalia, etc.
- Blood Vessel and Nervous Disorders: Peripheral artery disease or certain blood disorders like deep vein thrombosis may be associated with pain above the knee which is aggravated on bending. Further nerve entrapment can also lead to pain on the upper thigh region (though it is relatively rare condition).
There are certain individuals who are at the risk of developing pain above the knee which include athletes who fail to perform adequate warm up exercises, dehydration or electrolyte imbalance or individuals with a history of leg injury.
Treatment For Knee Pain
There are a host of causative factors that are associated with muscle pain above the knee joint. As per the Sports Injury Clinic, the treatment regimen depends upon the causative factor.
In cases of injury or trauma associated muscle pain above the knee joint, ice compression accompanied with elevation of the joint and rest are often recommended. Recovery phase comprises of mobilization of the injured muscle tissue using simple stretching and muscle strengthening exercises.
Physical therapy exercises including ultrasound and cold laser therapy are also recommended in individuals with muscle pain above knee.
In some individuals, limiting level of physical activity for a stipulated period of time is recommended while in others activity modification is suggested in cases of irreparable damage caused to the knee joint or muscles.