Getting a Leg Up on Knee Injuries with Dr. Ong
Categories: General Orthopedics / News / Sports Medicine
Dr. Crispin Ong was featured in the South Nassau Communities Hospital’s Health Outlook Newsletter.
Last fall, as James, then 66, practiced his backswing at the driving range, he felt a “sharp, intense pain” in his left knee. “It was as if a stick hit my left knee,” recalled James, a former Rockville Centre resident who now lives north of Baltimore. “I put ice on it for the swelling and took anti-inflammatory medication. If I kept my knee straight while walking, the pain was tolerable.”
When his knee failed to heal, he scheduled an appointment with Crispin Ong, MD, at South Nassau’s Center for Advanced Orthopedics. “Dr. Ong took X-rays and an MRI to confirm that I tore my meniscus (a C-shaped disc that cushions the knee),” James said. “It was a severe tear and I wanted to get back to golf.”
Dr. Ong’s Solution for James
“A torn meniscus is a common injury that occurs when forcefully pivoting or twisting,” Dr. Ong explained. “When rest, pain relievers and icing didn’t relieve James’ symptoms, removing a portion of the damaged soft tissue was his next best option.”
Last October, Dr. Ong performed a minimally invasive partial meniscectomy with arthroscopy. An arthroscope is a narrow tube with a fiber-optic video camera that inserts into the knee through small incisions. The procedure provides a view inside the joint that transfers to a high-definition video screen.
Following the same-day surgery, Dr. Ong prescribed a course of physical therapy and at-home exercise to increase James’ mobility and function. “I feel no pain and I feel confident,” said James, now 67.
The retired accountant says he plans to play more golf “since I’ve had the surgery” and has even set up his own driving tee and net in his backyard. “The entire patient experience at South Nassau was great,” he said. “I wouldn’t hesitate for a minute to recommend Dr. Ong. He’s a wonderful gentleman and very competent.”
5 Common Knee Injuries
There are many different types of knee injuries that can occur, since there are several different parts that make up the knee. In some cases, more than one knee structure is injured. Below are the most common types of injuries.
1. Knee Fracture
Your patella, or your knee cap, protects your knee joints from arthritis, injuries or further damage. When you fall or collide with an object or a person, your kneecap makes first contact and shields the different parts within your knee joint. This makes the kneecap susceptible to fractures.
Knee fractures are common but they’re also very serious. The knee must be immobilized to allow the bone to heal or sometimes needs surgery for repair.
2. Knee Dislocation
A knee dislocation occurs when the knee bones come out of place. This can happen when there is a large impact to the knee, such as a fall, a collision, or a car accident.
In certain situations, the knee will correct itself. It will feel a little sore, but will function normally. If this doesn’t happen, the only way to recover from a dislocation is to relocate the knee bones back into place. A doctor will strategically adjust the bones back in place in what is usually a quick, fluid motion.
3. Knee Ligament Injury
Ligament injuries are extremely common in sports. They occur when the knee overextends, or moves in a way it shouldn’t naturally move. As a result, the ligaments are unable to support the movement. Because the ligaments serve to keep the knee in place, if they’re forced too much, they aren’t able to do their job and they can stretch or tear.
The most commonly injured ligaments include the cruciate ligaments which make up the X – the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). The collateral ligaments, the medial collateral ligament (MCL) and the lateral collateral ligament (LCL), also commonly experience injuries.
Although ligament injuries are very common, there are varying degrees to how serious the injury is.
- I: In a Grade I ligament injury, the fibers overstretch, causing a ligament sprain. You won’t notice a lot of bruising, if any, and only minimal swelling. An example of this type of injury is an MCL sprain.
- II: This is when the ligament fibers partially tear, but not all the way across. This will result in more pain and joint restriction than Grade I, as well as additional bruising and swelling.
- III: A Grade III injury is when the ligament completely tears, which involves severe pain initially. The knee and surrounding area will be very bruised and swollen. An example of this type of injury is an LCL tear.
4. Meniscus Tear
A meniscus tear occurs frequently during sports where jumping or twisting is involved, such as volleyball. Meniscus tears also are common in sports such as football or soccer, where athletes change direction quickly while running. Any type of knee twisting, cutting or pivoting can result in a torn meniscus. Sometimes the meniscus also tears from wearing out over time.
5. Knee Tendon Tear
Tendon tears can happen to anyone, but are especially common in middle-aged people who are running or engaging in jumping sports and other activities. Landing awkwardly after coming down from a jump is a common way to injure the tendon, as the tendon is unable to support the overextension.
Falls can also cause a stretched tendon due to the direct force to the front of the knee.
Conclusion – Central Orthopedic Group
The experienced team at Central Orthopedic Group offers diagnostic and rehabilitation services to patients with knee injuries. Additionally, it’s important never to postpone your orthopedic treatment. Our sports medicine doctors can also provide personal recommendations for exercise and proper conditioning so you can reduce your risk of knee injury. And in the event of orthopedic surgery, you can be totally confident that you’re in the hands of Long Island’s #1 orthopedist.