Knee Dislocation

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Nurses Edition Commentary

Lisa Chavez, RN and Kathy Garvin, RN
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James A. W., M.D. -

This is a great topic and it is important to get the details right.
A large percentage of high energy knee dislocations are already reduced when they present to the emergency department. This is not true for the "activity of daily living" dislocations in obese patients. In the several (very small) case series, all but one of the knees was still dislocated when seen in the emergency department. The shocker is that the attending physician was surprised that there was a dislocation and that it wasn't obvious during the physical exam. So we will find the dislocation when we take the inevitable x-ray. The important point is that a large number of these people will have popliteal artery &/or peroneal nerve damage. It looks like an even higher percentage than in the high energy mechanism patients. Vigilance with respect to these associated injuries is the key.
See EMRAP March 2015

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