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Swollen Knee With Fluid

Updated on September 13, 2014

One of the common knee problems is the water on the knee. Water on the knee is caused by an excessive accumulation of fluids in or around the knee. To get rid of it, you must see a doctor to receive a proper diagnosis and treatment. Fortunately, the diagnosis and the treatment of knee problems progressed a lot recently.

What causes swollen knees?

There are two types of swollen knees. One is caused by blood leakage, and occurs as result of physical injury, high blood pressure, or an underlying disease after which the blood vessels in the knee burst, causing the blood to enter the knee joint creating a larger swollen knee. Even after the bursted blood vessel is healed, the blood stays within the joint cavity for some time causing unbearable pain and walking difficulties. Another type of knee swelling is the increased secretion of fluids in the knee joint as an inflammatory reaction to physical injury, weight pressure, or underlying disease. These excess fluids in the joint cause the knee to swell up. Arthritis is the most common disease that leads to the accumulation of bloody and non-bloody fluids in the knee joint. There are many other underlying diseases that can cause this condition like Osteoarthritis, Gout, Cysts, Tumors and other.


For the right diagnosis of the swollen knee, doctors may ask you to perform the following tests:

  1. X-ray images of your knee to check the condition of the bones and ligaments and to try to find cracks, dislocations, arthritis...etc
  2. MIR test that can accurately detect anomalies in the knee.
  3. Blood tests that can detect infection, inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis, a disease of lymph nodes, blood clotting problems and other.
  4. Arthrocentesis - the examination of the synovial fluid from knee joint, for traces of blood and bacteria.


Depending on the diagnosis, the doctor may prescribe painkillers, antibiotic (in case of infection), corticosteroids (although very effective, they can cause serious side effects).


If the diagnosed condition does not require an operation, patients resort to physical therapy and rehabilitation by using electrotherapy, ultrasound, warm-cold procedure and laser therapy. Specialists in this field also aim to strengthen and increase the flexibility of all the muscles around the knee using regular exercises.

Prevention and self treatment

  1. Avoid dangerous physical activities
  2. Maintain ideal body weight. Overweight imposes bigger pressure on your knees.
  3. Put on a bandage to relieve the pain and to keep your knee in safe position.
  4. Active rest and keeping your legs at an elevation while sitting or laying down.
  5. Perform easy exercises in the pool. Click Here to see some knee-related aqua exercises.


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