Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Women's Knees

Many athletes and people who work out complain about knee injuries. Knee pain can indicate an injury in a ligament, bursae, or tendon that surrounds the knee joint. It can also indicate arthritis. Women tend to have more cases of certain types of knee injuries than men. One such injury is problems with the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). This ligament prevents the knee from moving side to side and forward and backward. Some studies have also shown a connection between knee injuries and estrogen. Women are more susceptible to this when their estrogen levels are high, as during ovulation. Women should be extra careful to warm up or stretch leg muscles before and after exercise. Maintaining a healthy weight so as not to place too much stress on the knees is also important. Strengthening leg muscles is key. *

Several orthopedists have warned women not to wear high-heel shoes. They may have something to do with osteoarthritis, which is seen more often in women over 45 years of age than in men over 45 years of age. High heels may increase rotatory forces in the area where women get osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and affects cartilage, which is the part of joints that cushions them. Osteoarthritis occurs when cartilage gets worn down. If a person has this condition for a long time, their joints can lost their normal shape. Bone spurs can grow at the ends of a joint. Men have more knee cartilage than women, and so are more protected against the condition in their knees than women. In addition, some studies show that elevated estrogen levels exist in women who have osteoarthritis. ^

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Disclaimer: Information on this blog is posted for information purposes, not as a substitute for professional medical advice.


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