Understanding and Treating Knee Contusions

Knee Contusions: What are they?

A bone bruise is a type of bruising or swelling caused by damage to the bones. Bone bruises may occur anywhere along the body’s surface from your fingers to your toes. They usually do not involve blood vessels, nerves, muscles, organs or other tissues. A bone bruise does not necessarily mean that there was any breakage of the skin (bruising) but rather that some part of the bone has been damaged.

The term “bone” refers to the dense mineralized tissue found within bones. When bone bruises, it means that the bone itself has been injured. Bruises may be small or large and may result in pain, redness, swelling or tenderness at the site of injury. Bone bruises are most commonly seen on soft tissues such as tendons and ligaments, but they can also affect bones like vertebrae and teeth.

What causes them?

Bone bruises are caused when one or more bones in the body have been broken. There are several possible reasons why bones might fracture, including trauma, disease, overuse injuries and even natural aging processes. Bones can also fracture due to a lack of oxygen to the bone marrow resulting in a shortage of blood flow to the affected area. If enough time passes without treatment, then these fractures will become infected and cause infection of the bone.

What are the symptoms of bone bruises?

The most common symptom of any bone bruise is pain over the location of bone. Other symptoms can include redness, swelling and tenderness on surface of bone. A bone bruise can also limit range of motion in the injured area. It is important to seek medical attention as soon as you have a suspected bone bruise or one that is diagnosed by a medical professional.

What is the treatment for bone bruises?

Treatment for bone bruises typically involves rest, ice, compression and elevation. If diagnosed by a medical professional, treatment may include medication to reduce pain or fever caused by infection. It is important that you do not ignore bone bruises because they can lead to serious conditions or complications if left untreated.

How long does bruise knee take to heal?

It takes about a week for a bruise to heal on its own. If you have pain and swelling, we recommend you speak with your doctor for tips on how to manage your pain. When you talk to your doctor make sure that you inform them if the pain is severe, or if you experience any of the following:

• Increase in pain

• Changes in skin color or temperature

• Tingling or numbness

How to take care bruise knee?

You can use the RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) method to treat a bruise:

• Rest the injured area as much as possible.

• Apply cold packs for 15 minutes every couple of hours. Avoid applying ice directly to your skin; instead, use a cloth that can help protect your skin while still delivering a good dose of coldness.

You can also apply ice in the same way right after you injure yourself. Continue the application of ice until the pain begins to ease.

• Compress (wrap) the injured area to help keep the swelling down.

These tips can help you take care bruise knee and get back on your feet in no time.

How long does it take for a bone bruise to heal?

A bone bruise can take several months to heal. You can try RICE therapy to reduce the pain and swelling. Rest, Ice, Compression & Elevation.

How long does a bone bruise take to heal?

Usually between 1-3 months, it can also depend on the person’s age and activity level.

Is it possible to have a bone bruise without having broken any bones?

Yes it is very possible to have a bone bruise without breaking any bones. A bone bruise can be caused by trauma to the muscles around the bone or direct trauma itself to the bone, but no break occurs. This can result in symptoms similar to a broken bone, especially pain. It can sometimes be difficult for doctors to diagnose a bone bruise without an x-ray. If you have bone bruising symptoms, you should have an x-ray to confirm no break or very small break has occurred.

Are bone bruises dangerous?

The only danger of a bone bruise is the pain and swelling that can occur. To reduce this you can try RICE therapy which is rest, ice, compression, and elevation.

Does running cause bone bruises?

Yes, running causes bone bruises especially to people who do not do it regularly. The constant pounding of your feet against the ground or pavement causes trauma to your muscles and bones around the area which in turn causes bone bruises.

A bone bruise injury can be very painful and keep you from being able to walk or stand on that leg. Sometimes, it is difficult for a medical professional to tell the difference between a bone bruise and a broken bone. An MRI can help in determining if a broken bone exists. Sometimes, a bone bruise can also be accompanied by a hairline fracture, which can make the bone tougher to heal.

Does warming muscle tissue help with bone bruises?

Actually, no. The cold can help constrict the blood vessels and limit the bleeding under the surface of your skin to help alleviate pain and discomfort. Warming the muscle tissue is more likely to increase blood flow to the area which will cause more swelling and pain.

Can taking a sleeping aid help with bone bruises?

Sleeping aids are typically used to help people sleep through the night, which is not always possible when you have a bone bruise. The most important thing to do is to get some rest and ice the area to reduce swelling.

Will a bone bruise show up on an x-ray?

A bone bruise typically will not show up on an x-ray unless a hairline fracture is also present. Even if a hairline fracture is present, it can still be difficult to detect without an MRI. If you are experiencing symptoms of a bone bruise such as pain and tenderness, but an x-ray does not show a break or fracture, then you may have a bone bruise.

Is there a way to tell if a bone bruise will turn into a stress fracture?

There is no way to tell if a bone bruise will progress into a stress fracture. The best thing to do is rest, apply ice, and over time the bone bruise should heal and the pain will go away.

Return To Sports After A Bone Bruise

Many athletes get bone bruises from repetitive use such as runners or football players. The constant pounding on a bone bruises the surface of the bone. However, these bone bruises, while very painful, are not long-lasting and with rest and recovery should heal completely within 2-3 weeks. The only time a bone bruise can become a serious injury is if you do too much too soon while the bone bruise is present.

This can cause a stress fracture or complete break of the bone which will require surgery and a longer recovery period.

For this reason, it is important to take time off from your sport or physical activity to let the bone bruise heal. A bone bruise can take about 6 weeks to heal. During this time, try not to do too much physical activity which may cause a stress fracture. Generally, it is recommended you take at least a few weeks off from any sports or activities that may have caused the bone bruise in the first place.

As long as you give your bones time to heal properly, you shouldn’t have any long-lasting problems from a bone bruise.

The recovery period for a bone bruise also depends on how bad the bone bruise is. A mild bone bruise may heal in 2-3 weeks. A more serious bone bruise may take up to 6 weeks or longer to heal. A severe bone bruise may even require surgery and a long period of rest.

During this time, it is best to consult your doctor before resuming any physical activity that may have caused the bone bruise.

Treating A Bone Bruise

The first thing you should do is take time off from any physical activity that may have caused the bone bruise in the first place. This could be anything from running to playing your favorite sport. It is very important to keep the injured area iced for 20 minutes at a time, several times a day. This will help prevent swelling and control the pain and bleeding from the area.

Over-the-counter pain medication may also be helpful for relieving the pain. Be sure to take the medicine exactly how it was prescribed to you and do not take more than the recommended dosage.

Once the bone bruise begins to heal, your doctor should clear you to resume physical activity again. However, it is still important to take it easy when you first start resuming physical activity. If you go too hard or too fast when you first return to sports, you may cause a stress fracture in the bone, which requires a longer recovery period.

A bone bruise is very similar to a stress fracture, which occurs from repetitive impact to the same area of your bones over and over again. If an injury has occurred such as this, it is important to seek appropriate treatment immediately before the condition worsens. A bone bruise may also be a warning sign of a more serious condition, such as osteoporosis, which is a loss of density in your bones that makes them fragile and prone to break. Early detection and treatment of this condition is vital for preventing any more serious conditions, so if you feel pain or experience any other symptoms, it is important to seek medical help immediately.


Sources & references used in this article:

Incidence, Symptoms and Diagnosis of Jumper’s Knee and Knee Contusions in Female College Volleyball Players by I Morikita, S Kishi, Y Mitani – Journal of Physical Therapy Science, 2009 – jstage.jst.go.jp

Study of the process of athletes skeletal muscle contusion by L Tonghui – Contemporary Sports Technology, 2013 – en.cnki.com.cn

Sideline evaluation and treatment of bone and joint injury by CM Schupp – Current sports medicine reports, 2009 – journals.lww.com

Prospective trial of a treatment algorithm for the management of the anterior cruciate ligament-injured knee by DC Fithian, EW Paxton, ML Stone… – … American journal of …, 2005 – journals.sagepub.com

MRI-arthroscopy correlation: the knee by MD Milewski, TG Sanders, MD Miller – JBJS, 2011 – journals.lww.com