What causes discomfort near the knee cap after knee replacement surgery?

Posted on Thu, 2 Feb 2017 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: I had a knee replacement in July and have no pain walking or standing however when I go down steps, I experience pain/discomfort in the upper right (outside of leg) of the knee cap. There is also still some numbness in this area running to under the patella. What could be causing this pain? Is there anything I can do to alleviate the pain? Do think it will gradually improve?
Answered by Dr. Aashish Raghu 37 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Medial patellar ligament sprain

Detailed Answer:
Hi there.

Thanks for the query.

It is possible that you may be having a Medial patellar ligament sprain.

This can cause the knee cap to move outwards as you walk soft steps.

Apply hot packs to the affected region. Get an MRI of the knee to rule out such injury.

Wear a long knee brace while walking.

I hope I have answered your query.

I will be available to answer your follow up queries.


Dr. Aashish Raghu

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
Follow up: Dr. Aashish Raghu 9 minutes later
Have no discomfort walking, I have the discomfort when I go down steps straight on however if I go down partially sideways, I do not have the problem.
Answered by Dr. Aashish Raghu 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
Needs X-rays

Detailed Answer:
There may be weaknesses in the Quadriceps muscle as well as possible ligament sprain.

Do perform Physiotherapy to strengthen quadriceps muscle.

Do get Skyline, AP and lateral view X-rays done. This will help to decide on the diagnosis and help rule out Chondromalacia of the patella.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Remy Koshy
Follow up: Dr. Aashish Raghu 3 days later
I was wondering if it was the quadricep muscle - I do exercises and I massage the area daily. You thought it might be related to the patella but the pain when I go down steps feels as though it is more to the upper right of patella on the right leg rather than the patella itself. What do you think?
Answered by Dr. Aashish Raghu 13 hours later
Brief Answer:
Weak quadriceps

Detailed Answer:
There is a ligament called Medial collateral ligament which is on the left side of the right knee and another ligament called Medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL) on the inner aspect of the patella.

The Quadriceps muscle is attached on the top of the patella and can contribute to pain on the upper right side if it is weak or atrophied.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
Answered by
Dr. Aashish Raghu

Orthopaedic Surgeon

Practicing since :2011

Answered : 5184 Questions


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