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knee pain

I've recently noticed that I have bad knee pain when I go down stairs, and sometimes going up stairs. I'm only 22, so this seems pretty early to be having this problem. I used to run long distance every day, but in the past 6 months have almost stopped. Does anyone know what this problem could be or how to treat it?

Sun. Jan 21, 10:37am

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Best thing to do of course, is to see your doctor if it continues or becomes really troublesome.

Just to share *my* experience, not trying to suggest that you have what I have, but so you know that problems DO happen early/young...

I got Bursitis in my knees when I was 13 years old. It was a week before the end of grade 8. My left knee swelled up really bad. It was okay as long as I didn't put any weight on it either fully bent, or fully straight. I could walk fine. Mom took me to the doc, he injected saline with a HUGE needle, and squeezed a ton of crap back out of it. That got rid of the swelling, but left the pain.

Ever since then (I'm 38 now), I've had problems with both knees. They've never swelled again, and most of the time they're okay as long as I don't try to do anything with weight on them when fully bent (like the squat machine at the gym -- I can't do it at all, ever). But when they flare up, hoo boy! I can hardly walk, and stairs are really difficult, up or down.

Which is how my experience relates to yours. It *could* be bursitis, or another form of arthritis, and your age is irrelevant to it. Unfortunately, there isn't much by way of "treatment" that I can suggest. Painkillers if they're really bad, hot or cold pads (whichever feels better to you). Beyond that, I just suffer until the flareup settles down again.

However, you didn't mention how much you weigh. It also *could* just be that you are carrying too much weight on your knees, and stressing them that way, in which case losing it could solve the problem completely.

Good luck.

Sunday, January 21, 2007, 12:01 PM

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It could indeed be the extra weight you're carrying. For me, there's this point - 80 pounds above what I should weigh, about a BMI of 37 - where all of my joints ache and I need to walk down the stairs sideways because of it. I didn't notice that 80-lb point on the way up to being 100 lbs overweight (at age 30), but I did notice it on the way down to a more normal weight.

So if you don't feel like seeing a doctor right away, try taking off 10-15 lbs and see if that makes a difference.

Sunday, January 21, 2007, 1:39 PM

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OP here -I don't think it's extra weight, since I haven't gained weight recently and have a bmi of 20. I was thinking it could also be because I'm on the taller side for a woman - 5'8 and my family has a history of knee problems, but they usually don't show up until people are in their late 40s-50s. I'll look into the bursitis, though, since I never heard of it & it sounds like it could be possible. thanks for the suggestions.

Sunday, January 21, 2007, 1:49 PM

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The symptoms you are reporting sound very similar to my experience with having bursitis. I had it in both knees as a result of running on treadmills. My knees severely hurt to go down stairs and filled with fluid. I am a therapist so I treated myself, looking at my orthopedics textbooks. First I would suggest seeing an physician to rule out any ligament tears and to get a formal diagnosis. Then I would rest my knees, choosing low impact exercise such as walking or swimming. Try doing some strength training to your legs. If you have access to circuit training equipment, it can do wonders to alleviate your pain.

Sunday, January 21, 2007, 3:25 PM

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