Behind knee swelling

Behind knee swelling can be triggered by various conditions. The swelling is usually an sign of Baker’s cyst which is characterized by the buildup of synovial fluid that protrudes through the rear part of the knee joint and felt as an enlarged area or lump. Certain knee injuries, arthritis or damage to the knee cartilage and other issues can lead to Baker’s cyst.

It is vital to note that behind knee swelling can trigger pain or might not cause other symptoms. In some instances, there is warmth, tenderness, muscle weakness, difficulty moving the joint or bruising. Any injuries to the knee including sprains can result to diffuse swelling of the knee area.

Accompanying symptoms

Behind knee swelling might occur with other symptoms that differ depending on the underlying condition.

  • Bleeding or bruising
    Behind knee swelling

    Pain while at rest or during specific movements that are described as sharp, dull, stabbing, burning or aching.

  • Muscle spasm or weakness
  • Joint instability
  • Drainage or pus
  • Pain while at rest or during specific movements that are described as sharp, dull, stabbing, burning or aching
  • Evident deformity of the affected joint
  • Warmth and redness of the skin
  • Diminished mobility

What are the causes of behind knee swelling?

Baker’s cyst is the usual cause of behind knee swelling. The condition arises if the joint fluid leaks from the joint cavity into the tissues at the back of the knee. Other possible causes might include infections, trauma, bleeding and tumors in rare instances.

More Information / Disclaimer

The information posted on this page on behind knee swelling is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize and manage joint conditions and injuries by taking a standard first aid course with Vancouver First Aid.

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