It is estimated that over 10 million MD visits per year are related to some type of knee pain. Read on for some information on the anatomy and structures around the knee, factors influencing knee pain, and a few basic exercises that may help alleviate your symptoms.
The knee consists of three main bony structures (femur/thigh bone, tibia/shin bone, and patella/kneecap) that are covered in articular cartilage to ensure smooth gliding of the bones along one another. The meniscus of the knee help to provide cushioning and shock absorption. They are wedge-shaped in nature and add some stability in addition to shock absorption. There are also four ligaments (ACL, MCL, PCL, and LCL) that provide a significant amount of stability throughout the knee with each ligament helping to stabilize the knee in a certain plane of movement. In addition to these structures, there are numerous muscles and tendons that surround the knee to produce motion and supply additional support.