Knee Pain Location

Hints of the cause

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Knee swelling - knee effusion - knee pain

Knee Swelling or Effusion

Common areas and causes

  • Swelling of the entire joint:
    • Osteoarthritis, inflammatory arthritis, or crystal arthritis (gout or pseudogout)
    • Infection
    • Cancer (rarely)
  • Swelling on top of the kneecap:
    • Prepatellar bursitis
  • Swelling in the back of the knee:
    • Baker’s cyst

Areas of Knee Pain

Deep knee pain inside the joint:

  • Most commonly is from arthritis and/or bone bruising.
  • Rarely, deep bone pain could be a symptom of cancer.

Pain on the outside of the knee (lateral):

  • Osteoarthritis (link to above)
  • LCL injury (link to above)
  • IT band syndrome (link to above)
  • Patellofemoral syndrome (link to above)
  • Lateral meniscus injury (link to above)
  • Tibiofibular joint pain or looseness
  • Common peroneal nerve irritation (link to above)
  • Biceps femoris tendinopathy (irritation of the tendon of the outside hamstring muscle)
  • Popliteus tendinopathy

Knee pain symptom location - Oklahoma Knee Doctors

Pain on the inside of the knee (medial):

  • Osteoarthritis or other types of arthritis (link)
  • MCL injury (link)
  • Patellofemoral syndrome (link)
  • Medial meniscus injury (link)
  • Pes anserine tendinopathy/bursitis (link)
  • Semimembranosus tendinopathy (irritation of the tendon of one of the inside hamstring muscles) (link)
  • Saphenous nerve irritation (link)

Pain on the front of the knee (anterior):

  • Osteoarthritis or other types of arthritis (link)
  • Patellofemoral syndrome (link)
  • Quadriceps tendinopathy/tear (link)
  • Patellar tendinopathy/tear (“jumper’s knee”) (link)
  • Hoffa’s fat pad impingement (pinching of the fat pad below the kneecap by the patellar tendon)
  • Osgood-Schlatter disease (pulling of the patellar tendon where it attaches to the shinbone causing a painful bump, most common in children/adolescents)
  • Lumbar nerve root pinching or irritation (link)

Pain in the back of the knee (posterior):

  • Osteoarthritis or other types of arthritis (link)
  • Baker’s cyst: often associated with medial meniscus tear
  • Hamstring or gastrocnemius (calf) muscle tendinopathy or tearing
  • Popliteus tear or tendinopathy
  • Pinched nerve in the low back/sciatica


Knee Pain Answers in Oklahoma


The knee is a complex joint with many structures and tissues that can contribute to pain. While arthritis is the most common cause of knee pain, other areas including ligaments, tendons, meniscus injuries, nerves, or muscle weakness often contribute. If you are experiencing knee pain, it is important to have a specialist evaluation to identify the source of your condition and develop a comprehensive treatment plan. At Orthobiogen of Oklahoma, our board-certified specialists provide you with the most advanced surgery-free treatments available for your joint pain. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.

Call To Schedule: 405-697-3436

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