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kato 04-27-2010 08:51 AM

Funny feeling behind knee
Recently I was on vacation and did quite a bit of walking - actually more walking than I was used to. Prior to the vacation I had walked at my local gym and worked up to 3 miles over 4-5 months time, starting at 1/2 mile. I have always been fit but sat behind a computer during the last few years of my working career.

My question is: has anyone had experience with what feels like a "bulge" behind their knee? When I do a deep knee bend, my left knee has a bit of pain and the feeling of a slight "bubble" or flap of skin that is right behind the joint. I have never had any knee problems until now and was always able to walk and do knee bends with no problem. I'm wondering if anyone has "hyperextended" their knee through walking too much or overdoing walking? It feels like it's maybe been hyperextended, but don't know for sure, and wonder if this could happen through walking.

Would be grateful for any input you can provide. Thank you...:)

jennybyc 04-28-2010 11:14 AM

Re: Funny feeling behind knee
There is a bursa directly behind the knee that can swell up due to overuse but it's mainly felt when it becomes a "garbage can" for the knee joint. When the cartilage starts to flake off as we age, it gets pulled into that bursa as a way to get it out of the joint. When that happens, they call it a Baker's Cyst.

There is nothing they can do for it but that is what is probably what you are feeling. Nice to know we have garbage cans in the body.


kato 04-29-2010 08:42 AM

Re: Funny feeling behind knee
Thanks jenny for the explanation. Yeah, garbage cans in the knee is certainly a revelation to me..;)

Would you suggest any exercises to alleviate this problem or should I just ignore it? Right now the knee joint feels a little fragile, but I can still walk and swim. Am I making it worse by doing so, or should I "baby" myself and try to favor the leg?

Certainly appreciate any input you can provide..thanks!!

jennybyc 04-29-2010 02:17 PM

Re: Funny feeling behind knee
I'm assuming you have some osteoarthritis in your knee and that is why you've developed the garbage can cyst. The strange thing about OA is that it hurts to use it and you think you should give it some rest but yet the best thing you can do for it is to keep it moving. The act of squeezing the cartilage by bending or standing forces the joint fluid through the cartilage and that keeps it from flaking apart.....slows the arthritis.

The key is to do exercises that don't put too much force on it but do the job. The best exercise is swimming as it means no weight bearing. Bicycling is good too. Walking is okay unless it starts to hurt more. Any exercises to strengthen the muscles in your leg is good(ask your doc about getting some physical therapy to learn what they are).

If it keeps up, there is lot the docs can do for you. See either a rheumatologist(arthritis specialist) or an orthopedist(they are surgeons so may not have the time to do too much so I prefer the other guys). They can put good joint fluid back in your knee and that can relieve pain for months. A cortisone shot can give good relief. Just using an anti-inflammatory daily can help. But they need to do some x-rays and examine the knee to let you know what would help the most.

And then of course, you can go my route down the knee replacements. But early intervention in a bad knee can slow or stop that!
Use your garbage can discomfort to tell you if your knee is getting it fills up, you'll feel more pain and it's a sign that the OA in your knee is worsening.

good luck...................Jenny

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