Read below about pain in the outside of the knee, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your pain in the outside of the knee from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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A.I. Health Assistant Causes for Pain in the Outside of the Knee

The list below shows results from the use of our A.I. Health Assistant by Buoy users who experienced pain in the outside of the knee. This list does not constitute medical advice.

  1. 1.Meniscal Injury

    A torn meniscus is one of the most common knee injuries. Any activity that causes forceful twisting of the knee, especially when putting the pressure of one's full weight on it, can lead to a torn meniscus.

    6 to 8 weeks

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, knee stiffness, knee instability, pain in the inside of the knee, swollen knee
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Iliotibial (It) Band Syndrome ('Runner's Knee')

    Iliotibial band (ITB) syndrome is the lateral knee pain that results from overuse that occurs after repetitive motion. It is the most common cause of lateral knee pain in runners and cyclists.

    Within 6 to 8 weeks with conservative nonsurgical treatment

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    knee pain, pain in one knee, dull, achy knee pain, knee pain that gets worse when going down stairs, sharp knee pain
    Symptoms that always occur with iliotibial (it) band syndrome ('runner's knee'):
    knee pain
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Knee Sprain (Lcl)

    The LCL is the ligament on the outside of the knee, keeping it from bending away from the body. It is most commonly injured while playing sports (ouch!) when a force is placed on the knee from the inner half of the knee.

    Days to 6-12 months, depending on severity

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, knee pain from an injury, knee injury, pain in the outside of the knee, sports injury
    Symptoms that always occur with knee sprain (lcl):
    pain in one knee, knee pain from an injury
    Symptoms that never occur with knee sprain (lcl):
    mild knee pain
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room
  4. 4.Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a form of arthritis that causes pain, swelling, stiffness and loss of function in your joints. It can affect any joint but is common in the wrist and fingers. RA is an autoimmune disorder, meaning that it is caused by the immune system incorrectly attacking the joints when it shouldn't.

    RA is a chronic disease which requires lifelong control.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, depressed mood, joint pain, muscle aches, daytime sleepiness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

    Pain in the Outside of the Knee Checker

    Take a quiz to find out why you’re having pain in the outside of the knee.

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  5. 5.Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome

    The kneecap (patella) is located directly in front of the thigh bone (femur), and should normally glide freely up and down. In this condition, called patellofemoral pain syndrome, the kneecap may rub against the thigh bone instead of gliding smoothly, causing damage and pain.

    Most people get better within weeks to months of physical therapy.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    knee pain, pain in one knee, knee pain that gets worse when going up stairs, dull, achy knee pain, knee pain that gets worse when squatting
    Symptoms that always occur with patellofemoral pain syndrome:
    knee pain
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  6. 6.Knee Bursitis (Pes Anserine Bursitis)

    Pes anserine bursitis is an inflammatory condition of the knee.

    Days to weeks (up to 8 weeks)

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, knee pain that gets worse when going up stairs, spontaneous knee pain, knee pain that gets worse when going down stairs, knee pain that gets worse when standing up
    Symptoms that always occur with knee bursitis (pes anserine bursitis):
    pain in one knee
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  7. 7.Jumper's Knee (Patellar Tendonitis)

    Patellar tendonitis (Jumper's knee) is the inflammation of the patellar tendon, which attaches the knee cap to the shin bone (tibia). This condition is caused by frequently from sports and jumping.

    1 month with rest

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, spontaneous knee pain, knee pain that gets worse when going up stairs, knee stiffness, knee pain that gets worse when squatting
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  8. 8.Repeated Kneecap Dislocation (Patellar Subluxation)

    Recurrent patellar subluxation is the continued instability of the kneecap, which causes anterior knee pain and usually occurs laterally. It occurs unpredictably with varying durations.

    Recovery timeline is dependent on treatment type.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, dull, achy knee pain, pain in the front of the knee, pain in the inside of the knee, swollen knee
    Symptoms that always occur with repeated kneecap dislocation (patellar subluxation):
    kneecap dislocation
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  9. 9.Osteochondritis Dissecans

    At joints where bones meet, bones are covered with a layer of cartilage which provides shock absorbance and lubrication. Osteochondritis dissecans is a condition where a piece of cartilage with a thin layer of bone detach from the larger bone, causing pain.

    Conservative treatment should resolve the problem in 3-6 months.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in one knee, knee stiffness, knee instability, knee pain that gets worse during a run, pop in the knee
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Pain in the Outside of the Knee

  • Q.Is the knee pain affecting one or both knees?
  • Q.Do you often feel your knees buckling?
  • Q.Where is your knee pain?
  • Q.What is your body mass?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our pain in the outside of the knee symptom checker to find out more.

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Pain in the Outside of the Knee Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced pain in the outside of the knee have also experienced:

    • 10% Knee Pain
    • 5% Knee Bump
    • 4% Pain in the Back of the Knee
  • People who have experienced pain in the outside of the knee had symptoms persist for:

    • 40% Over a Month
    • 20% Less Than a Day
    • 19% Less Than a Week
  • People who have experienced pain in the outside of the knee were most often matched with:

    • 46% Knee Sprain (Lcl)
    • 30% Meniscal Injury
    • 23% Iliotibial (It) Band Syndrome ('Runner's Knee')
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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