Plica Syndrome is the problem that occurs in knee due to certain injury
and overuse. It leads to intense pain and often diagnosis of the problem
is difficult; however, once diagnosed the problem can be easily treated.
For effective treatment, one should understand what happens during the
problem and how it is treated. Plica is a defined as a fold in the inner
lining of the knee joint. The lining, which has synovial tissue, helps
in the unrestricted movement of the joint. Plica has four soft tissue
folds, the medial Plica, one of the folds causes problem when it gets
inflamed due to overuse or injury and is called Plica syndrome. The condition
is common among athletes and runners.
- Repeated motion of the knee
- Exercises that irritate Plica
- Repeatedly bending and straightening of the knee
- Activities such as biking, running, climbing stairs
- Falling on the knee
- Hitting knee on hard surfaces during an accident
- Pain in the front of knee
- Popping and locking when the knee is bent
Plica Syndrome is difficult to diagnose. The orthopedic physician reviews
the medical history of the patient and thoroughly examines the knee. He
tries to access the extent of damage by the injury and determine the cause
of the injury. The physician will look for a thickened piece of irritated
tissue on the knee. He will also assess the strength and mobility in the
knee. The physician may ask certain questions related to the routine activities
of the patient. He also recommends imaging tests such as x-ray or MRI
to find the source of pain.
Often Plica Syndrome is cured without surgery; however, if the problem
persists the patient has to undergo surgery. The patient is suggested
to limit the physical activities to reduce the inflammation. The doctor
may also prescribe some anti-inflammatory medicines to reduce swelling.
Ice packs and massages can also help. In case the symptoms persist, the
patient may have to undergo surgery. There is no harm in removing plica
as your body can remain without it. The surgery does not involve any complications
and side effects.
The recovery time ranges from four to six weeks. During the recovery period,
a physiotherapist can help patients recover the lost strength and mobility.
Regular stretching and strengthening exercises benefit the knee. The patient
should allow complete recovery before starting any physical activity or sports.