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3 Common Symptoms of Arthritis in the Knee

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 23% of U.S. adults suffer from the more than 100 types of arthritis. While the most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, the disease is notorious for striking joints all over the body, causing pain whenever the person moves or tries to move. One of the most common places the disease can strike is in the knee, which makes walking both painful and difficult.

If you are experiencing pain in your joints and suspect it’s arthritis, see your doctor for a professional diagnosis. In the meantime, here are three common symptoms of arthritis in the knee that you should know about.

Man with arthritis in the knee

Swelling or Tenderness

Arthritis of the knee is caused by inflammation of the joint caused by osteophytes or bone spurs. This condition causes the knee to swell and become tender, with accompanying pain as fluid accumulates near the joint.

Pain accompanies arthritis in the knee


When the knee joints are damaged over time, they can ultimately become weak and unstable. This weak knee structure often causes locking or buckling.


A buckling knee is one of the primary symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. Without proper treatment, it can destroy the tendons, affecting the knees’ range of motion and long-term stability.


Frequent buckling cause excessive friction between the bones, eroding the cartilage and causing bone spurs. Bone spurs make the knee hard to bend or straighten and can be very painful.

Cracking Sounds

Another common and instantly identifiable symptom of arthritis in the knee is cracking knee sounds. You may notice a popping sound while straightening your knees or bending them to sit down. The medical term for this sound is crepitus.


Cracking sounds are an outcome of losing a significant amount of cartilage from the joints, which reduces the knees’ smooth motion range. That said, if you are experiencing just cracking knee sounds but don’t have pain or swelling, you may not have arthritis.

Active adults with knees up

If you’re experiencing knee pain and are looking for joint pain treatments in the Clear Lake, Texas, area, you’ll find an orthopedic knee doctor at Houston Physicians’ Hospital who can provide knee pain treatment.


Our physician specialists can treat all forms of arthritis, with measures ranging from recommending physical therapy to performing full knee replacement surgery, in Webster, Texas. Our Orthopedic Center of Excellence provides patients with personalized and compassionate treatment plans designed to help them find relief and recover quickly.


Learn more about the causes of and treatments for knee pain on our website, where you can also find a doctor who’s right for you at the bottom of this page. We serve patients all over the Clear Lake area, including League City, Galveston, and Webster.