How to Treat Dislocated Kneecap?

  • February 15, 2024
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How to Treat Dislocated Kneecap?

What is a Dislocated Kneecap?

A dislocated kneecap, or patellar dislocation happens when the triangular bone in the front of the knee, called the patella, is forcefully pushed out of its usual place within the groove of the thigh bone (femur). This displacement can cause pain, swelling, and instability in the knee joint. Typically, the kneecap moves smoothly within a groove between the thighbone and shinbone when you bend and straighten your leg. However, during a dislocation, the kneecap is forced out of this groove, often tearing ligaments and causing discomfort. Most dislocations occur laterally, moving to the side of the groove, and are often caused by sudden impacts or twisting motions. While painful and debilitating, some dislocations may spontaneously correct themselves.

Why Does a Dislocated Kneecap Occur?

Dislocated kneecaps often occur due to sudden twisting or direct impact on the knee joint during activities such as sports or falls. Factors that can increase the risk of patellar dislocation include weak thigh muscles, abnormal alignment of the knee joint, hypermobility, and previous knee injuries.

How to Identify a Dislocated Kneecap?

Symptoms of a dislocated kneecap may include:

  1. Sudden onset of severe pain in the knee
  2. Swelling and bruising around the knee joint
  3. Inability to straighten or bend the knee
  4. Feeling of the knee giving way or buckling
  5. Visible deformity or abnormal positioning of the patella

If you suspect a dislocated kneecap, seek medical attention immediately for evaluation and treatment.