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Why do I get swelling in the knee joint after playing soccer?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
Answered : 9083 Questions
My right knee would swell after playing soccer. I stopped playing for over one year. Had an MRI and they found nothing.
My Physio has been working on my IT BAND plus strengthening exercises which seem to help.
However I played soccer only my 2nd game back, not a lot of time on the field because I'm just slowly getting back into it. Now my left knee swelled up the next day. I have never had problems with my knees before so dont know what's going. I have to play soccer in Italy World Masters Games next year and am hoping to be healed by August 2013. Is there any solution ? Thank you
Posted Wed, 5 Dec 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 13 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
The swelling in the knee joint after playing soccer seems to be related to a mild inflammation related to stress.
Stretching and strengthening the quadriceps and hamstring muscle groups is critical for proper treatment. Quad sets are done by contraction the thigh muscles while the legs are straight and holding the contraction for a count of 10. Sets of 10 contractions are done between 15-20 times per day.You can do the required exercises under the care of an expert physiotherapist.
Get your running shoes examined for proper biomechanical fit.
Heat application and use of knee brace is advised for proper knee support at the time of exercise.
Avoid such activities as squatting, kneeling, heavy lifting, climbing, etc.
Adding glucosamine sulfate as supplement after consulting your orthopedician may help in relieving your symptoms.

I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Why do I get swelling in the knee joint after playing soccer? 10 days later
Thank you doctor,
I have been doing what you recommended all week. Im going to give soccer a go tomorrow night and see how it feels. I have been riding the stationery bike, stretching everyday and doing minimal weight training. I feel good however I will see what happens tomorrow.

another question for you?
i fell 2 years ago, sideways onto my left elbow, the jolt radiated to my shoulder. i was kicked by the opposing player and then slid very hard onto the ground. I continued to played for a bit then subded off because i was in pain. I did get it checked out, it was x-rayed but didn't show anything, no broken or cracked elbow or shoulder. Now it's been a few weeks and the pain has returned more so than before - (not so much b/c of exercise - i also have an office job where i'm on the computer for 10 hours a day so i'm sure that doesn't help). anyway, the pain is getting worse but only when i try to straighten my arm up over my head, or if i'm stretching my arms back, my left arm cannot go behind my head, if that makes any sense to you.
if i lower my arm palm out and try to stretch it behind it doesn't go back, and it's painful ( palms in, no problem, weird - I guess it's the positioning of my shoulder). Howver doing chest press with weights its ok, but flys are more difficult? By the way, my elbow is fine. I'm surprised with the force on how i fell my shoulder didn't snap or go right thru the skin. any ideas please let me know. thank you again
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 23 minutes later
Thanks for writing again.
From your description it seems that you are having a muscle stiffness or a shoulder joint.
taking a pain killer in combination with a good muscle relaxant like thiocolchicoside will help you. Do a hot fomentation regularly and avoid all painful movements.
An MRI scan is advisable in case the pain persists.
Hope my answer is helpful.
Do accept my answer in case there are no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Why do I get swelling in the knee joint after playing soccer? 9 minutes later
I know it's not muscle stiffness only because i can tell the difference...i've been in sports all my life and if anything I would think it's closer to soft tissue.

however, for example, if i'm leaning against a wall...and put my arms back and try to touch the wall with the back of my hands (shoulder length or worse when try to put my arms over my head),. my right arm has no problem but my left cannot touch the wall. not even close. I then also feel the pain radiate up my shoulder into the neck, and down into my shoulder blade?? it feels joint related but not certain
thanks again
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 1 hour later
The possible cause could be a rotator cuff tear or tendonitis.
Physiotherapy, steroid injections are given to reduce the inflammation and strengthen the uninjured muscle around the shoulder to compensate for the torn rotator cuff.
Mostly these tears are treated in this way. So if you have no relief after these measures, then you have to discuss with your orthopaedic surgeon regarding surgical option after proper investigations.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Why do I get swelling in the knee joint after playing soccer? 2 minutes later
ok, sounds good. thanks doctor
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 30 minutes later
Thank you.
I am glad I could help.
You can consult me again directly through my profile URL
Please accept my answer in case there are no further queries and recommend our services to your friends too if you have found it helpful.
I wish you the very best in whatever you do.
Warm regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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