Orthopedic Treatment For Kneecap Instability

by Administrator 17. June 2015 04:21

Kneecap, also known as Patella, is the triangular bone present in front of the knee, which connects the thighbone with the shinbone. The kneecap can slip out of its place due to trauma of a severe injury, causing pain, swelling and disability in functioning.


  • Intense injury: Traumatic injuries like intense falls, motorbike collisions; sudden twisting of the knee, etc. can cause severe impact on the kneecap. This impact may result in its dislocation, causing instability in the kneecap.
  • Shallow groove: The thighbone has a ‘v’ shaped groove to accommodate the movement of kneecap.
  • Lose ligaments: Some children and women have loose ligaments, which tend to make their joints more flexible and prone to conditions like Kneecap Dislocation.


  • Locking knee
  • Intense pain
  • Swelling and stiffness
  • Inability to walk without aid
  • Popping sensation in the knee
  • Knee slipping off to the side


The diagnosis of an unstable kneecap is done by a physical examination. The orthopedic doctor may ask the patient to walk and straighten or bend the affected joint. The doctors may also evaluate the range of motion, tenderness and appearance of the knee. Sometimes a piece of bone or cartilage can displace or loosen when the kneecap dislocates and X-ray, MRI scans or CT scans can be helpful in assisting the doctor for diagnosing it.


  • Reduction: The doctor can prescribe anti-inflammatory medications to relax the muscles and then apply gentle pressure to move the kneecap back into its position. This procedure is known as reduction.
  • Immobilization: After the Kneecap gets back into its place there is a higher risk of recurrent dislocation, due to the weakness in the muscles. Doctors may recommend the patients to wear braces for 3-4 weeks, in order to stabilize the knee and limit the movement of the joint to speed up the healing process.
  • Restrict weight bearing: The doctors recommend using crutches during the first 1-2 weeks of the injury. This is because putting weight on the knee can cause pain and slow the recovery process.
  • Physical therapy: After the healing process begins, the doctors may suggest the patients to exercise regularly for regaining movement in the affected joint. Exercising also tends to reduce stiffness and strengthen the muscles holding the kneecap in position, reducing the risk of suffering from the same problem again in the future.
  • Surgery: In severe cases, where the kneecap dislocates multiple times, the doctors may also recommend surgical procedure to help in solving the problem.

In case of instability in the kneecap, visit Dr. Morgan in Allen, TX. In order to schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeon, you can call at (972) 727 – 9995.

Tags: ,

Comments are closed