Joint pain can be discomfort, pain or inflammation arising from any part of a joint — including cartilage, bone, ligaments, tendons or muscles. Most commonly, however, joint pain refers to arthritis or arthralgia, which is inflammation or pain from within the joint itself.
Joint pain can be mild, causing soreness only after certain activities, or it can be severe, making even limited movement, particularly bearing weight, extremely painful.
See a doctor immediately if your joint pain is caused by an injury and is accompanied by:
- Joint deformity
- Inability to use the joint
- Intense pain
- Sudden swelling
- Tenderness and warmth around the joint
Knee pain can be caused by problems with the knee joint itself, or it can be caused by conditions affecting the soft tissues — ligaments, tendons or bursae — that surround the knee.
The severity of knee pain can vary widely. Some people may feel only a slight twinge, while others may experience debilitating knee pain that interferes with their day-to-day activities. In most cases, self-care measures can help you cope with knee pain.