Knee Injuries In Queens

The knees, the largest joints in the body, provide flexibility and stability to the legs. To perform this important function, the knees contain bones, cartilage, muscles, ligaments and tendons, any of which may be damaged by a knee injury. Construction workers who carry heavy objects or repeatedly crouch, squat or bend, such as carpenters, plumbers, roofers, and masons, are prone to knee injury accidents and construction site accidents. A worker can also hurt a knee in a slip/trip and fall accident on-the-job; this injury is also common in sidewalk accident cases.

In car accidents, a knee injury sometimes occurs when the force of a collision slams a car occupant’s knee into the dashboard. Construction workers and car accident and other injury victims can suffer many different knee injuries, as follows.

Fractured or broken knee cap (patella) fracture – near the knee – of the bones that serve the knees, such as the femur or tibia;

Tear of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). This ligament connects the tibia to the femur and is located in the middle of the knee, in front of the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). It is the most commonly injured of all knee ligaments, because it protects the knee against twisting and limits how far the knee extends. The ACL can be torn or strained by planting the foot and making a quick move, such as in sports, or by a direct blow to the knee. In serious injury cases, the ACL may be torn with the medial collateral ligament (MCL).

If the ACL is torn, the knee generally “gives way,” and can’t support weight. The injured person may feel or hear a pop or tear, the knee swells up and, of course, there is pain. ACL tears usually require surgery, with long-term physical therapy afterwards.

ACL tears account for over ⅔ of all knee injuries and most commonly happen during high-impact sports.

Tear of medial collateral ligament (MCL) (also known as tibial collateral ligament, or TCL); located on the inside of the knee, the MCL connects the end of the femur (thigh bone) to the top of the tibia (shin bone). The medial collateral ligament resists widening of the inside of the joint, or prevents "opening-up" of the knee. Though less common than ACL injury, the MCL can be damaged in an accident when the outside of the knee is struck and pushed inwards and tears. Surrounded by tissue, if not too badly torn the MCL is the only ligament that can heal itself (sometimes) by scarring over.

Tear of posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). This ligament connects the tibia to the femur and is located at the center of the knee, behind the ACL. The PCL is stronger than the ACL, and is not as likely to be injured as the ACL.

The usual way a PCL tear is suffered is by a blow to the knee when it’s bent – for example a bent knee hitting a dashboard in a New York car accident case.

Symptoms of a PCL knee injury include pain, swelling, and knee instability. Injury to the meniscus, dislocation or fracture of the kneecap, and tendon rupture can also occur in a knee injury accident.

Torn meniscus (meniscal tear). A common knee injury is a torn or split meniscus. The meniscuses are strips of cartilage that bolster the kneecap on both sides. Severe impact or twisting, as in a sports or motor vehicle accident – such as a bus accident, a truck accident, or a motorcycle accident – can cause this injury. A meniscus tear is common in construction workers. It can occur when a laborer twists or turns too quickly while the knee is bent and the foot is planted, or is careless handling large amounts of weight.

Symptoms noticed by the meniscus accident victim of a meniscus injury may include swelling, pain, and inability to straighten the knee. A meniscus injury varies in severity depending on the extent of the tear or split. Minor tears typically result in pain and swelling that resolves away in a few weeks. Moderate tears typically results in worse pain and swelling, and difficulty twisting or bending the knee. The most serious tears leave the knee unstable, with difficulty straightening the leg, and a locking or popping of the knee.

If you have torn a meniscus on the job, you may need rehabilitation therapy or even surgery to
restore the meniscus to proper function. This can result in expensive medical bills and time lost from work, which can strain your family’s finances.

Longer term, injury to the knee may mean the development of:

Tendinitis. Knee tendinitis refers to the inflamation, tear and irritation of tendons in the knee area. Though knee tendinitis often goes untreated, it's actually the most common form of knee injury. The knee tendons are thick cords that attach the bone to muscles. There are several large tendons around the knee area. Knee tendinitis is most common in the patellar tendon group located at the front of the knee

Tendinitis is caused by overuse, injury and/or aging. The inflamed tendons in the knee are usually painful when moved or touched, and the tendon sheaths may be visibly swollen from the accumulation of fluid and inflammation. The pain is usually the result of a small tear in or inflammation of the tendon. Tendinitis can also be associated with inflammatory diseases that occur throughout the body, such as arthritis.

Chondromalacia, also called chondromalacia patellae. Chondromalacia is due to an irritation of the undersurface of the kneecap. The undersurface of the kneecap, or patella, is covered with a layer of smooth cartilage. This cartilage normally glides effortlessly across the knee during bending of the joint. However, in some individuals, the kneecap tends to rub against one side of the knee joint, and the cartilage surface becomes irritated, and knee pain is the result.

Chondromalacia patella is abnormal softening of the cartilage under the kneecap (patella). This injury commonly affects accident victims as a result of injury, overuse, misalignment, or muscle weakness. An injury or blow to the knee, such as in a car accident or sports incident, can cause a small piece of the cartilage to break off or a fracture in the bone. The most common knee injury symptom of Chondromalacia is a dull pain in the kneecap area, which gets worse with downhill walking or descending stairs.

Chondromalacia patella may also be a sign of arthritis of the kneecap, which is usually seen in older individuals.

Arthritis. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of knee arthritis. OA is a progressive degenerative disease in which the joint cartilage wears away. It most often affects middle-aged and older people. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an inflammatory type of arthritis that can destroy the joint cartilage. RA can occur at any age. RA generally affects both knees.

Post-traumatic arthritis can develop after an injury to the knee. This type of arthritis is similar to osteoarthritis and may develop years after a fracture, ligament injury, or meniscus tear.

Knee arthritis symptoms tend to get worse over time, yet they may not get steadily worse. A knee arthritis victim may have both good weeks and bad weeks, or symptoms that are affected by the weather – wet weather or cold weather. Some arthritis sufferers tell that they know before it will rain.

The symptoms of knee arthritis are similar to those of other knee injuries: Pain; reduced range of motion; stiffness; swelling; tenderness along the joint; and, feeling that the leg may collapse.

If you experience knee injury, you should consult an experienced Queens accident or injury lawyer (attorney), Bronx accident or injury lawyer (attorney), or Queens accident or injury lawyer (attorney), who can help you get maximum compensation and competent medical care so you will have less to worry about.

For your serious personal injury, you need legal representation from a qualified personal injury attorney. Contact us for your free consultation.

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