A case of Knock-knees or Genu Valgum

A 58 year old female from Venezuela presenting with advanced osteoarthritis of right knee. Patient complaints of pain mostly upon walking. Pain at times wakes the patient up. Pain is also localized to Posterior lateral aspect (Outer back) of the right knee. Her past medical history is positive for obesity, and hysterectomy. She gets some relief with Motrin as well as Glucosamine.

Discussion: It is very important for the knee to be aligned properly. Patients who develop knock-knees is usually because of more pressure on the lateral (outer aspect of the) knees. This condition is also known as "Genu Valgum." This abnormal distribution of weight causes wearing of the cartilage and joint to accelerate and makes arthritis worse. In this condition legs are bowed inwards in the standing position (see the picture). This unusual misalignment usually occurs at the level of the knees, and then when the patient is standing with his or her knees together, the feet can not touch each other. Again I see this condition in obese people by far more commonly.

Case Study Date: 2/21/2007