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Pain in the foot, stiff knee, difficulty in bending the knee

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 2000
Answered : 170 Questions
Hi I have a lot of pain from my left foot goes up my leg and to the back of my knee and there is a big vain there and my knee get very stiff where it very painfull and i cant bend it hurts very bad
Posted Fri, 4 May 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Atul Wankhede 12 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.

In my opinion, there are two possibilities. This could be a refered pain from your spine which affects a particular nerve root and the area of its distribution. Or there is a local pathology in your foot and knee, possibly a type of arthritis like rheumatoid or gout. The big vein that you mentioned is known as a varicose vein and needs to be evaluated by a general surgeon.

If it is related to spine, you would feel an occasional pain in your back radiating down to leg with associated tingling numbness and burning sensation in leg.

At your age, some wear and tear of joints is but natural. That could lead to osteoarthritis. Pain, stiffness and deformity in knee are its features.

In any case you need to be physically examined and might be required to take some tests and xrays. Meanwhile to prevent further damage take the following precautions-

1. Avoid climbing stairs.
2. Do not sit cross legged or bend your knee more than 90 degrees.
3. Do not lift heavy objects.
4. Avoid doing work that requires you to bend forward.
5. Use a knee and ankle brace for added support.
6. Consider going to a physiotherapist for strengthening exercises and passive range of motion exercises.

To advise medicines is beyond the scope of our work, but you need an antiinflammatory drug under your treating physicians guidance.

I hope this helps you. If you need help understanding any of this in more details feel free to get back to me, I'm available for follow up.

Good luck.
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Follow-up: Pain in the foot, stiff knee, difficulty in bending the knee 34 minutes later
What does local pathology mean?
Answered by Dr. Atul Wankhede 2 hours later
Hello once again.

Local pathology means any abnormality of an organ, in your case your foot and knee, that has structural changes as in arthritis and manifest in visible symptoms like pain, swelling, stiffness or deformity.

In contrast to this is a focal pathology, like slipped disc or hip arthritis for instance.

They both can have primary symptoms elsewhere in body, most commonly in legs and knees.

In short, local pathology means problem lies where their is pain, which is opposite in focal lesion.Please feel free to ask more.

I shall gladly be of service.

Good day and wish you an early recovery.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Pain in the foot, stiff knee, difficulty in bending the knee 9 hours later
Ok, so could it be caused from the foreign object I have in my foot, for 30 years now, and has to much scar tissue around it to do anything about it.
Answered by Dr. Atul Wankhede 27 minutes later

Thanks for writing back.

Its a long time for a foreign body to be lodged in your leg. I'm not certain what it is and as to why its left there, but if you have symptoms like pain, swelling or redness around it then its better out than in.

It could cause your primary symptoms if you are avoiding bearing weight on that part of leg. That over a time cause biomechanical changes in legs and your walking gait.

It will be lot easier if you could post some xray or a photo of affected leg showing the foreign body for more clarity.

Hope this helps. I'm still here if you need me. Take care.
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