Femur Knee Joint Anatomy
Femur knee joint interactions can be the source of common injuries in athletes. The femur is the body’s largest and longest bone. Additionally, the femur bone is one of the body’s strongest, supporting much of the body’s weight. The femur is located as the connection between a person’s hip and knee joints and the human femur anatomy consists of four parts: the head, greater trochanter, lesser trochanter, and distal end. The head of the femur is globular and is covered by cartilage to facilitate movement withing the hip socket. The greater and lesser trochanters are features found at the top of the femur and, combined with the head, allow the bone to connect to the hip socket, with the lesser acting as a fulcrum and the greater acting as the handle for hip muscles to pull upwards. The whole hip joint exists as a ball and socket connection with the head being the ball and the trochanters guiding movement and rotation. The distal end of the femur is where the bone is connected to the knee.
In connection with the knee, the femur is joined to the tibia and fibula by a series of ligaments including the collateral (medial and lateral) and cruciate (anterior and posterior) ligaments. These ligaments govern the directional mobility of the knee and limit excessive stretching and rotation. Also, the distal end of the femur has a covering of cartilage to prevent excessive friction with the other bones present in the knee joint. The design of the bone allows blood vessels to run along the surface and into the head of the femur, thus supplying the lower part of the body with necessary blood supplies. In a standing position, the femur bone extends at a very slight angle with the head slightly deeper than the distal end. This stance allows the femur and knee joint to absorb the majority of the body’s weight without putting undue stress on the bones of the lower leg and feet.
Injuries to the femur are relatively rare and occur usually as a result of traumatic impact due to accidents or full contact sports. In addition, the following certain risk factors may be the cause of a femur injury: aging, postmenopause, a lowering of muscle mass, or bone-weakening diseases such as osteoporosis. Damage to the human femur anatomy can be a serious injury and may take three to six months to heal completely. In case of femur fractures, treatment may require insertion of metal plates, pins, or rods to promote proper recovery of the bone. Prevention of these types of injuries includes maintaining a calcium-rich diet and proper exercise to strengthen the bone and ligaments. Also, a seat belt should always be worn when riding in a car. If a person engages in high contact sports or activities, protective gear needs to be worn to prevent problems with femur knee joint interactions.