Knee Pain Going on for 5 Years?
I have been experiencing severe knee and associated toe pain for about 5 years now. During my freshman year of college, I went to squat down to get something and I found I could not get up. My knees got incredibly stiff and a sharp pain ran up and down my legs, originating in what felt like within my knee cap or slightly above. I was then diagnosed with patellofemoral syndrome (though I am a light exerciser and I do not run). They have since only gotten worse, and I continued to see a rheumatologist. My blood work and X-rays showed no signs of arthritis, though he thought it could be unmarked, so he tried me on Plaquenil. I had horrendous side effects, and although I thought the medication could be helping, I stopped it because I could not get out of bed (exhaustion) being the biggest side effect. They are worst when bent at a 90-degree angle of less, when squatting, or standing in place. They are warmer to the touch and there is a balled-up muscle on the upper, outer corner of each knee (though my right is worse). When my extremities get too cold (toes), the pain in my knees seem to worsen, Currently, I am having a major flare-up, and they seem to grind when bent, and if I squat to pick something up, I get pins and needles. They are extremely painful in the mornings, but the pain is constant. I have experienced maybe a tad of numbness. I can feel a new pain coming from behind and on the outside of my knees now, that continues up my hamstrings and into my lower back, causing more stiffness. I also have a very tight IT band that I have been trying to massage out. I am desperate for help and am only 23 years old. It makes it extremely difficult to work out or have the motivation to because I know I will be in pain for days, and just do not know what to do anymore. I have not had any major falls, though I was a dancer for some time in my childhood and tended to lock my knees a lot growing up. I have since tried to keep them unlocked, but everything seems to cause pain no matter how I compensate. Could it be bursitis? Arthritis? Reynaud's?