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Knee locking Assessment Questionnaire

Questions Your Doctor May Ask - and Why!

During a consultation, your doctor will use various techniques to assess the symptom: Knee locking. These will include a physical examination and possibly diagnostic tests. (Note: A physical exam is always done, diagnostic tests may or may not be performed depending on the suspected condition) Your doctor will ask several questions when assessing your condition. It is important to openly share any pertinent information to help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.

It is also very important to bring an up-to-date list of all of your all medical conditions, medications including dosages, and names of numbers of any specialist you see.

Create your printable checklist by answering questions that your doctor may ask below:

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  1. How long have you been having problems with knee locking?

    Why: to determine if acute or chronic.

  2. What exactly do you mean by knee locking?

    Why: True knee locking is the sudden inability to extend the knee fully but ability to flex fully. It usually occurs in the range of 10 -45 degrees, with average of 30 degrees. Causes of true knee locking include torn meniscus (bucket handle tears), loose body (bony fragment from osteochondritis dissecans), torn anterior cruciate ligament (remnant), avulsed anterior tibial spine, dislocated patella and osteochondromatosis.

  3. Pseudo-locking may be due to first or second degree medial ligament tear, strain of the anterior cruciate ligament, gross effusion (fluid collection in knee joint) and pain and spasm of the hamstring muscles
  4. How frequently do you experience knee locking?
  5. What activities or movements of the knee will precipitate knee locking?
  6. Is there a history of trauma?

    Why: would suggest torn meniscus, torn anterior cruciate ligament, avulsed anterior tibial spine, Osteochondritis dissecans and dislocated patella.

  7. If knee pain is related to an injury, explain in detail how the injury happened?

    Why: e.g. did you land awkwardly after a leap in the air?; did your knee get a direct blow?; did your leg twist during the injury?; did you hear a "pop" or "snap"?

  8. If the knee pain is related to an injury, how soon after the injury did the pain develop and were you able to walk after the injury?
  9. Past surgical history?

    Why: e.g. previous knee surgery.

  10. Knee catching (feel that something is getting in the way of joint movement but not locking. This is sometimes confused with knee locking)?

    Why: suggests subluxing patella, loose bodies, torn meniscus, torn anterior cruciate ligament, avulsed anterior tibial spine, dislocated patella.

  11. Knee crepitus (knee grating with movement)?
  12. Symptoms of meniscal tears?

    Why: e.g. Often caused when there is history of injury with twisting movement with the foot firmly fixed on the ground. Present with pain over the joint line, locking of the knee, swelling of the knee and pain worse with activity.

  13. Symptoms of anterior cruciate ligament tear?

    Why: e.g. onset of pain after a sporting injury such as landing from a jump or a forced rotational strain of the knee when another player falls across the knee. Results in immediate swelling of the knee due to accumulation of blood in the knee joint. Problems after the injury of knee pain, knee locking and knee "giving way".

  14. Symptoms of Osteochondritis dissecans?

    Why: e.g. person is usually 15-20 years of age and presents with intermittent ache or swelling of the knee. Later, there are attacks of giving way, and locking may occur. It results when a small bony-cartilage fragment separates from the femur bone within the knee joint and then appears as a loose body in the joint.

  15. Symptoms of dislocated patella?

    Why: e.g. occurs unexpectedly when the quadriceps muscle is contracted with the knee in flexion. There is acute pain and the person can not straighten the knee; sometimes the knee collapses and then person falls to the ground. Girls are more commonly affected than boys and the condition is often bilateral.

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Knee locking:

The following list of conditions have 'Knee locking' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Knee locking or choose View All.


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