Knee and kneecap

Important information about knee pain, cruciate ligament tears, and related injuries and conditions.

Dear readers,

Knee pain - a sudden sharp pain in the knee that comes out of nowhere, can be caused by many different things. On the pages that follow, we provide you with valuable information about how to keep your knees healthy, describe the most common knee conditions such as gonarthrosis, unhappy triad, and typical cruciate ligament tears, and offer important advice on the topic of the “knee and the kneecap”. After all, “Motion is Life” is not only our motto; it’s also a philosophy that we practice ourselves, which is why we promote physical activity and vitality wherever possible – and for your benefit. Indeed, what could be worse than being unable to move? With that in mind, we hope that you stay fit, agile, and healthy – and enjoy reading our Knee Dossier!

Best regards, Your team of experts at Bauerfeind UK

The most common knee injuries and knee conditions

Knee pain, or pain in the knees

Whether it’s related to wear or excessive strain, there are many causes of knee pain.

Cruciate ligament tear / cruciate ligament rupture

The nightmare of every athlete: When a cruciate ligament tear brings you to your knees.

Irritation in the patellar tendon

Painful and long-lasting. What you can do to treat irritation in the patellar tendon.

Osteoarthritis of the knee / gonarthrosis

Stiff legs, problems with walking? Gonarthrosis is often detected when it’s too late, but it can be treated.

Unhappy Triad

A particularly unfortunate chain of events results in this triple injury. What can be done about it?

Pain in the knee cap

Sharp pain and pressure with every step; are even short distances becoming a problem? Kneecap problems are quite common.

Frequently Asked Questions / FAQs

Supports and orthoses are orthopedic aids that can be used to treat discomfort in the joints and larger body areas such as the back or thigh.

They help relieve pain caused by overwork, injuries and surgery, as well as accompanying the onset of age. They are used occasionally or permanently to help you to stay mobile or to become mobile again.

You should arrange an appointment with your physician for determining whether a knee support or a knee orthosis is the better solution for treating your condition.

Please continue reading to find more information about the difference between a knee support and a knee orthosis.

OFTEN UNNOTICED HELPERS

Not everyone knows about or immediately thinks of the possibility of wearing a knee support or orthosis. These provide a wide field of action and includes protection against reoccurrence, but only a few have an image in mind on how they work. Despite the many opportunities to see them in everyday life in men or women, if you do not know anybody who wears supports or orthoses, or even someone who has experience with them, you rarely pay attention to these aids in action. Another reason is that orthopedic aids are almost invisible because they are often covered by clothing. They are created and designed to perfect fit and to become part of the body.

SUPPORTS AND ORTHOSES WORKS DIRECTLY ON THE BODY

Supports and orthoses surround joints, the whole or part of the body they are close to. In this way, they can exert their stabilizing effect - either by compression, ie by slight pressure on a certain area, or by solid elements that protectively restricts movements. In part, supports and orthoses also combine both. Occasionally, individual elements may be removed or added to stabilize less or more in the course of a treatment.

Function of a bandage

HOW DOES A SUPPORT WORKS?

When comparing support and orthoses, supports are more flexible and usually offer more freedom of action. They always consist of an elastic compression fabric that adapts to the body parts, shapes and allows movement. They develop their full stabilizing effect by improving the self-adaption to the body parts and activating the surrounding muscles.

When you move, the tension in and relaxation of the muscles in resistance to the fabric triggers an alternating pressure, which massages the soft tissue. Built-in pads (specially designed functional elements) protect bony structures such as the kneecap or the inner and outer ankle of the foot from pressure peaks. They are made of flexible material, thereby deforming during movement and also massaging the soft tissue. The massage relieves pain and stimulates the metabolism over a large area makes swelling subside faster.

At the same time, sensory cells are stimulated on the skin surface, in the soft tissue and in the muscles throughout the area covered by the bandage. This increased perception of stimulation activates sensorimotor processes and helps to stabilize the respective joint or the respective body part in the movement.

HOW DOES AN ORTHOSIS WORK?

Orthoses are often complex in design and made of stronger materials. Therefore, they are usually adapted by orthopedic technicians to the body. If they have knitwear, they are often firmer than with bandages and sometimes also inelastic. Due to their mechanics, they can form a very stable adhesion around the joint or the body part. This relieves pain and protects against incorrect movements.

In comparison to supports, orthoses restrain the freedom of action more in favor of high stability up to the immobilization. They often take over corrective functions and can be set to allow controlled movements up to a certain stop.

They can protect joints from "breaking out" during movement by safely guiding them with straps, rails or bars. Similarly, orthoses can direct the posture of a body part such as the lumbar spine in a particular direction to relieve or support.

A knee support is not a stylish accessory but rather a medical product that can relieve pain, support the healing process, or be used as a preventive measure. To get the most out of a knee support, you need to make sure it fits as perfectly as possible – and not only because that makes it comfortable to wear. Most modern supports deliver a range of effects – knee supports, for example, have an overall compressive effect, but also provides stability, relieves pressure, and massages specific areas of the knee. If the knee support doesn’t fit properly, such active effects can only be partially achieved, or not achieved at all.

For this reason, we strongly recommend that you consult an expert at your local medical supply retailer and have your knee area measured there, before you purchase a knee support. The expert will select from our large range of knee supports for various conditions, exactly the right support for your symptoms and your build. This ensures that you’ll quickly achieve maximum success with your knee support.

A knee support can be purchased in a retail store (medical supply retailer, pharmacy) even without a prescription or an instruction issued by a physician. However, it makes sense in most cases to consult a physician first if a medical indication exists. If your physician issues a prescription for a knee support, you might be reimbursed by your health insurance company for most of the cost but we would recommend you to contact your health insurance company before. If you don’t have a prescription and or your health insurance doesn't cover part of the cost, you will have to pay the full price for your knee support.

You can purchase a knee support at any medical supply retailer without a prescription, as there are no legal restrictions on the purchase of such medical products, however in order to confirm whether you will be reimbursed or not we strongly recommend you to contact your health insurance company.

In order to prolong the life and therapy results of your knee support we strongly recommend you to wash it often following the care instructions enclosed in the package. We do not reccomend to wear a knee support over your clothing as doing so, will prevent the proprioceptive properties from taking effect and also inhibit the activation/training of the sensorimotor system. In addition, clothing absorbs nearly all of the positive effects of the individual functional elements. For example, instead of experiencing a slight massaging effect in certain areas and pressure application or relief in others, your clothing will press against your painful knee in a more or less uncontrolled manner. This is not only inefficient as it can also be painful and lead to chafing (skin irritation).

Knee supports from Bauerfeind are also sometimes known as “active supports“ – i.e. they make it easier for those who wear them to move around. It’s actually this movement that enables the supports to have their positive effect on the body and the healing process. The massage function and the intermittent compression cannot be activated when you’re immobile, for this reason, wearing the support at night is not effective. It’s better if you wear the knee support during the day when you’re active and then let your knee relax at night.