Q. When I get up from sitting my knees make a cracking sound. What is this noise? Why does it happen and how can I fix it? Thank you.
A. There are several common reasons for joints to make noises!
All of our joints contain a synovial lining or sheath which houses a type of lubrication or synovial fluid. Synovial fluid helps to nourish and lubricate our joints.
When the joint capsule is stretched beyond its normal range, it creates a pressure gradient causing a fluid bubble to form. Joints produce a CRACK sound when bubbles burst in the fluid surrounding the joint.(the pop is called cavitation).
It is not dangerous. Occasionally, as we age, the synovial lining wears down and actual bone begins to touch bone or hyaline cartilage rubs against other hyaline cartilage.
As it rubs, over time, it can cause grooves which when rubbed on each other can also create a cracking noise. Often a good stretching program can help to alleviate pressure on the joints.
If the sound can be repeated over and over without a break, it could be arthritis or cartilage irritation.
If you are not able to immediately reproduce the sound, it is probably just synovial bubbles!
To learn more about NovaCare Rehabilitation, with 24 NE Ohio outpatient clinics,please visit us online at www.novacare.com/neohio.htm
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