A hyperextended knee is a relatively common knee injury amongst various athletes. It is especially common in gymnasts and basketball players. A hyperextended knee injury can be even more severe in individuals that got it as a result of an auto accident as there is even more pressure put on the knee.
What is a Hyperextended Knee?
A hyperextended knee is a knee which has continued in its’ motion past the typical straightened position. The result of this will be your knee bending in angles which it is not meant to bend. This causes knee ligaments to become torn. The knee ligaments were necessary to provide a connection between your upper and lower leg. With the ligaments being torn you cannot function your leg and knee properly until it is treated and has recovered.
The most basic way to look at what causes a hyperextended knee is that the knee is completing two opposite motions at the same time. Imagine that the knee is moving forward and backward with high pressure on the ligament. This could easily cause the ligament to become torn and lead to a hyperextended knee. Athletes experience hyperextended knee injuries in lower intensity then those that experience them from crashes and other high pressure incidents.
How is a Hyperextended Knee Injury Treated?
The main goal for the treatment of this condition is to minimize the swelling, pain, and stress associated with the torn ligaments. The first thing that you could do to treat the condition is apply ice to the affected area. This will minimize the amount of swelling and pain that is experienced as a result of the hyperextended knee. Also, when using ice you will want to have it wrapped in a towel or similar item as it is not a good idea to directly apply the ice to your knee.
Right after you apply ice to the hyperextended knee you will need to seek medical attention. Visit a doctor and get the condition diagnosed. Once it is determined that you have a hyperextended knee injury you will most likely be provided with anti-inflammatory medication to help treat the condition. You will also likely be suggested to take advantage of a compression bandage to help treat the condition.
Treating a Severe Condition of a Hyperextended Knee Injury
If you have a serious hyperextended knee injury then you will need to treat it in a different manner then you would if it was a less serious condition. You will be required to rest and not do anything physical at all. The only physical activity that you should be active in would be the physical therapy. This will help you regain strength in your leg and build the stability back up.
You may be required to use crutches if the condition is serious enough as it can be extremely difficult to walk with a hyperextended knee injury. Additionally, you should apply ice to the affected area while you are sitting or lying. Apply ice to the affected area two or three times each day. You will also be given certain knee exercises to treat your hyperextended knee. These can be done at home, in a swimming pool, and at the gym. These exercises are used to practice the standard range of motion for your leg.
Hyperextended knee injuries can range in intensity depending on how they occurred and the specifics of the patient. If you experience a minor hyperextended knee injury then it could be treated with rest and ice. If you experience a major hyperextended knee injury then surgery and physical therapy may be necessary. Less serious cases of a hyperextended knee injury can recover within a few weeks while more serious cases may take almost a year to fully recover.
If you believe that you have a hyperextended knee injury then you will want to speak with your doctor immediately. It is important that you get it diagnosed and start the necessary treatment so that you can recover from the condition as quickly as possible.