What is locking knee?
Locking knee refers to when the leg gets stuck in one position, unable to bend or straighten. It is one of the more rare knee conditions. There are two types:
- True locking
- Pseudo locking
True locking occurs when a torn meniscus, or knee cartilage, causes a physical blockage and lack of movement within the joint.
Pseudo locking occurs when your bodies defense mechanisms kick in to prevent further damage. Problems with your kneecap and inflammation of the structures or tissues around the knee can lead to this condition.
What causes locking knee?
In most cases a sporting injury such as a meniscus tear or sprained ligament can cause the pseudo locking type due to inflammation from such injuries. It can also be due to a natural age-related degeneration of the meniscus.
How to treat locking knee
With true locking cases surgery may be required to remove the physical blockage. With pseudo types initial treatment may involve painkillers, anti-inflammatories and ice. This action should help get the pain and any inflammation under control. Early treatment will help avoid further damage which could lead to true locking. A focus on restoration and rehabilitation should work effectively. Rehabilitation such as strength and conditioning is a must to help avoid recurrence of the injury. Treatments include:
- Sports injury management
- Strength and conditioning
- Rehabilitation suite
- Running clinic (gait analysis)