What is Hyperextended Knee: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Aug 04, 2020 08:00 AM

Photo by Fiona McWhinnie from Wikimedia Commons

Tripboba.com - Taking care of our bodies and being careful of our actions are ways to avoid injury. Our body is vulnerable to injury, it can get injured because of many factors.

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One of the body parts that most vulnerable to injury are our knees. You can get an injury from a trip while walking, exercising, or unintentionally banging your knees on a corner. 

One of the knee injuries that can occur is the hyperextended knee. What is it? You can find the answer and more things that you need to know below, including the causes, symptoms, and treatments.

What is a Hyperextended Knee?

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Hyperextended knee, or genu recurvatum, is a condition that occurs when the knee joint is extended excessively so that it puts pressure on the structure of the knee and the back of the knee joint.

Hyperextended knee makes the joint of your knee bends in the wrong way. This condition can result in pain, swelling, and even can cause tissue damage.

If the condition of the hyperextended knee is severe, it can even cause a sprain or rupture in some of your ligaments, such as the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), and popliteal ligament.

Everyone can experience hyperextended knee, but it’s more often occurred on athletes, such as those who play soccer, football, lacrosse, or skiing. These athletes have a higher of getting hyperextended knees because they are more vulnerable to injury during sports.

The hyperextended injury itself is often caused by a direct hit to the knee or when the knee is forced to stop in seconds from an acceleration.

Hyperextended Knee Symptoms

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There are several symptoms that you may experience if you’re suffering from hyperextended knee, such as:

1. Pain

Pain in the knee joint is one of the signs that can indicate hyperextended knee. You may feel a mild to severe pain on the back of your knee or a pinching-like pain in front of your knee joint. The pain can be severe if your ligaments are other structures in your knee are torn or damaged.

2. Swelling and Bruising

The pain of hyperextended knee also comes with swelling and bruising. After your knee is injured, you may notice swelling and bruising around your injured knee. The swelling and bruising are a sign that your body is responding to the injured tissue on your knee. The swelling and bruising might be mild or severe, it depends on the intensity of the hit.

3. Unstable Knee

When you’re suffering from hyperextended knee, you may notice that your knee stability is decreasing. You may also feel like that your leg is weak while you’re walking and have difficulty while you’re standing on one leg.

4. Lack of Mobility

Suffering from the hyperextended knee can result in a decrease in mobility. You might experience difficulty in bending or straightening your legs. There are several factors that might be the cause of the lack of mobility, such as swelling and damaged ligaments.

Hyperextended Knee Treatments

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A hyperextended knee is considered one of the tissue injuries. To treat this condition, you can do the RICE principle, which consists of rest, ice, compression, and elevation.

1. Rest

It is recommended for you to take a break from activities that may increase the risk of further injuries, such as high-intensity exercise or sports. But gentle exercise can help with your hyperextended knee. Taking inflammatory medication can also help you to reduce the swelling and pain on your knee.

2. Ice

Putting ice on your hyperextended knee can also help with the swelling and pain. Ice your injured knee for about 15 minutes a couple of times in a day, and make sure that you don’t directly put the ice on your knee. Put the ice in a piece of towel or fabric to avoid direct contact with your skin and prevent skin irritation.

3. Compression

Another way that can help to manage the swelling and the pain of your hyperextended knee is compression. You can do the compression by using compression wrap or elastic bandage.

4. Elevation

Elevating your injured knee is also a great way to treat hyperextended knee. This will improve your blood circulation and reduce the swelling.

5. Surgery

If the hyperextended knee is severe to the point that your tendon is ruptured, then the way to treat them is through surgery.

How long does it take for a hyperextended knee to heal?

The recovery time for hyperextended knee depends on the severity of the injury. But it can take 2 to 4 weeks to recover from the hyperextended knee.

If you received surgery to treat your hyperextended knee, then the recovery time is longer. It can take about 6 months or more for you to get to a full recovery.

So, those are the things that you might want to know about the hyperextended injury. Injury can be avoided, but there are some times that it’s unavoidable. But once it occurred, you should seek immediate medical attention to prevent further damage to your injury.


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