Knee pain concerns: I have a small pain that feels like it is coming from the upper outside of my left knee. I've had this issue on and off for a long time and it doesn't prevent me from doing anything, but it has me worried.
I'm in my mid 20's and am a pretty hardcore mogul skiier and I do lots of mountaineering. I'm unable to see a doctor for a few months and I'd like some insight into what this might be.
The pain seems to happen when I am extending my leg under load, for example, when I'm climbing stairs. It also comes up when I'm riding a bike. I've never had any major knee injuries but this feels like it is gradually increasing over time. Sometimes, when I'm running up stairs I get a little twinge and I have to stop running up stairs for a day or two before it goes away. When this happens in the middle of a multi day climbing expedition I can still continue but I have to be a little gentler on the knee. So this is not debilitating pain, I just want to make sure I'm doing everything possible to preserve my knees.
Looking at this picture
, It feels like the LCL but I'm not sure. If you are looking at my left knee from the front, the pain is at about 2 o'clock, about 1-2cm (radially) out from the edge of the kneecap.
So I'd like some attempts at diagnosis, is this a tendon problem? Cartilage? Muscle? (I know this is frowned upon here, but I'm not able to get proper medical attention for a few months and I'm going to be climbing a mountain soon) Also, some advice about what I can do to prevent further damage. Would a brace help? If so, what kind? Are there exercises or stretches that would help? Currently I try to stretch the affected area by pulling my heel up to my butt. Seems to help.
Also, for many years I think I was riding my bike with the seat too low and I get a feeling that this is related.