Like any machine, over time our bodies wear down. Joints are especially susceptible to wear and tear because of the movement and pressure that are necessarily applied to them. Joints are where two bones meet. They are connected with ligaments, tendons, and cartilage to each other and the surrounding muscles.
The knee joint is the largest in the human body. It handles a tremendous amount of stress as it allows lower body mobility while supporting the upper body. Over time, the cartilage at the end of the bones that form the joint can deteriorate.
In addition, there are fluid sacs in the knee capsule to keep the joint lubricated. These bursae can become irritated or inflamed if injured, resulting in bursitis.
There are many potential causes for knee joint pain:
- Osteoarthritis – a chronic condition that occurs when the cartilage between bones breaks down
- Rheumatoid arthritis – an autoimmune disease that affects joints, causing swelling
- Bursitis – inflammation of fluid sacs either in front or directly behind the kneecap
- Immuno-inflammatory conditions