Pain behind the knee: causes

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Daily activity, eating habits, and the practice of some physical exercises can predispose our knees and legs to some ailments that can range from uncomfortable to severe. The knee, as a joint, is a considerably complex area in which most of the impacts of our accelerated gait or the repercussions of lousy posture are received.

In the following FastlyHealarticle, we will clarify the leading causes of pain behind the knee, as well as the resources that can benefit the recovery of a said significant joint.

Pain behind the knee and calf: inflammation of the popliteal muscle

One of the first anatomical landmarks regarding the knee’s posterior (back) face is the popliteal muscle, which extends behind the knee joint, covered by the calves. The swelling of the popliteal muscle is one of the leading causes of Pain behind the knee.

This muscle participates in the movement of the knee flexion and is demanded either when jogging or running at high speed. Taking steps that are too long or not doing adequate leg stretches puts you at risk of inflaming this muscle, for which you will need to apply cold compresses or ice first. If the discomfort persists for several days, move on to warm compresses and anti-inflammatory remedies.

To prevent them, stretching is important not only before marathons and races but after them so that the muscle releases the tension that may have accumulated in it.

Cause of Pain behind the knee: Baker’s cyst

This cyst, also called a popliteal cyst, is a watery lump that forms in the back of the knee as a result of inflammation or wear of different tissues of said joint, generally caused by a mixture of the following causes:

  • Inappropriate exercises without sufficient warm-up before and after it.
  • An inadequate diet and hydration, since in the face of a deficit of nutrients, one of the first parts that the body relegates to nourish, hydrate, and regenerate are cartilage and joints.

These wears reduce the natural space for said fluid, leading to its spillage towards the back of the joint, which is why it is also called a popliteal cyst.

This cyst will produce characteristic Pain accompanied by some or all of the following symptoms :

  • Palpable fluid lump behind the knee
  • Pain both inflection and in the extension of it
  • Limitation of movement
  • Compression
  • If the cyst bursts, bruising will quickly become apparent and require emergency care.

In the following FastlyHealarticle, you can learn more about Baker’s cyst: symptoms and treatment.

Pain behind the knee when walking

Another situation similar to Baker’s cyst is knee bursitis, specifically anserine bursitis. Bursitis is due to an inflammation of the bursa that contains the synovial fluid. Although most bursitis cause pain in the front of the knee, the anserine type localizes the Pain within the joint and back. This inflammation is generally caused by:

  • Wear
  • Overweight
  • Drop
  • Fluid retention (which is why it is more common in women)
  • If the bursitis is septic (due to an infection), it may appear in addition to Pain: fever and heat, and redness in the affected area.

Pain behind the knee when stretching the leg

Inflammation of the tendons in the knee can present a similar etiology to all the conditions that we have already mentioned about habits, warming of the limb around exercise, and eating, but the following factors are also involved :

  • Tread and walking problems
  • Misalignment of the hip
  • Inflammation in the prostate or uterus, mainly if the tendonitis occurs in both knees.

The signs that would differentiate this tendonitis from the other causes are:

  • There is no fluid bulge as in Baker’s cyst or bursitis, although swelling is present due to inflammation.
  • Stiffness or swelling of the back of the knee.
  • Sensitivity to the touch throughout the back of the knee.
  • Weakness in the leg and possible Pain in the thigh due to fatigue when unable to support the portion calmly.
  • The severity of the Pain, when the tendonitis is due to wear and tear, is increasing, it can be reduced by warming up and doing activities of moderate impact, but after warming up, it can reappear.
  • Night pain and when walking in acute tendonitis.

In the following article, we explain the exercises for goosefoot tendonitis so that you can relieve its symptoms and Pain.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Pain behind the knee: causes , we recommend that you enter our Bones, Joints and Muscles category .

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