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Sports Medicine

A knot on the outside of your knee

06/13/2007

Question:

I have had a knot on my left knee for about 2 or 3 years. In the last 3 or 4 months, their is pain associated with this. No matter whether I am standing, stitting, walking or lying in the bed. I did go to my primary care physcian on 6 11 07, and he has referred me to an orthopedic Dr. He thought at first that it could be a cyst or something, but it is hard, and it does not move around. It is the size of a bigger marble. What is your opinion on this

Answer:

Depending on the location, this knot could be caused by many things.  Skin cysts such as an epidermal inclusion cyst or lipoma may cause a "knot" and would be associated with the skin rather than the knee joint itself.  Knots could also be from bone with a joint spur or bone cyst causing the symptoms.  Baker's cysts in the back of the knee can cause a mass as well as cysts within tendinous structures.  X-rays will help tell if the mass is from the bone and an MRI may be done if the x-ray is not helpful in the diagnosis.  A simple good exam may be all that is needed to determine the cause.  I hope this helps.

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Response by:

Charles Webster, MD
Assistant Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati