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Experiencing loud crunching noise while walking. What can I do to stop any damage?

Feb 2014
User rating for this question
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Answered by

Orthopaedic Surgeon, Joint Replacement
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 5930 Questions
Hi, for some time I have been experiencing a very loud crunching noise when I straighten my knee, especially when I walk upstairs. I can feel the vibrations of the crunch when I cup the joint with my hand and as I said it is very audible (and therefore embarrassing) when walking up steps. I do not experience any pain but worry that it may become painful at some stage as I am an Exercise to Music Instructor. Is there anything I should or could do to prevent any (further?)damage or pain?
Posted Tue, 23 Oct 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 3 hours later

Thanks for writing in.

As you describe the symptoms as painless loud crunching noise, I do not think we have any reasons to worry.

Sometimes as a normal phenomena, fluid (synovial fluid) that lubricate the joint release bubbles which pop and crackle with movement. This occurs very commonly after a period of inactivity or during certain movements. I am not sure if this is what you have, but this is my most likely explanation to your symptoms.

You don't need to worry if there is no associated joint pain; but you have to do some conditioning exercises to improve the overall integrity of the joint - stronger muscle will take the weight of the joint and help to reduce the pressure on articulating surfaces, thus preventing any damage to the joint.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if you have any more concerns.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Experiencing loud crunching noise while walking. What can I do to stop any damage? 2 days later

thank you very much for your reply. It is very useful but I thought I should mention that I exercise very regularly - I teach exercise and also go to the gym myself, so more exercise is probably not required.

In any case, could i just ask you - is this crunching likely to go away or will it carry on indefinitely?

Best Regards,

Answered by Dr. Saurabh Gupta 7 hours later

Thanks for writing in again.

It's nice to hear that you do exercise regularly. Please continue with it.

You need not to worry about your crunching sound, it will go away.

Hope this discussion was useful. Please close this discussion, if you do not have any other queries. I would appreciate your reviews about this service.

Wishing you good health…

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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