Why do women have more knee pain than men?
Knee pain affects both men and women. Contrary to the popular belief, knee pain is not limited to sports and recreational activities. Many people who are not involved in sports and recreational activities also experience knee pain. But women are more susceptible to knee injuries, as compared to men. In female athletes, the rate of Anterior Knee Pain and Anterior Cruciate Ligament is higher as compared to the male athletes.
Women are more susceptible to injuries to the ligaments holding the knee together and also to chronic problems that involves the kneecap and the cartilage that acts as a contact area between the lower and upper leg bones. Although experts are not yet sure as to why women are more prone to knee pain, some say that because of the anatomical differences like smaller body size and bone structure, women experience some serious knee pain. Another reason, according to some experts, is the width of the female pelvis. The shape of the female pelvis results in a sharper angle where the leg and thigh bones meet. This angle actually creates alignment problems for the kneecap. Again there are some biomechanical features which lead to increased knee problems in women. The ligaments in women tend to be more lax than men’s ligaments and the muscles supporting the knee are weaker in women as compared to men. All these reasons result in anterior knee pain in women. Often many women who perform activities like stooping, squatting, walking up and down stairs or some hilly areas may face such issues. So they limit themselves from doing these activities or take breaks from office work.
A joint replacement surgery or a partial knee replacement is required to treat unbearable knee pain, when a refuge to physical therapy and analgesics fails. The best joint replacement surgeon will try to find alternative ways of assuaging a knee pain, first rather than advising a patient to go for surgery Many researchers have proposed that women become more vulnerable to ACL injury due to their estrogen hormone. Estrogen plays a pivotal role in protecting the cartilage. Due to a drop in estrogen levels, it cannot protect the cartilage completely. Estrogen tends to decrease monthly during the menstrual cycle as well as during menopause.