Genu Recurvatum
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Is Genu Recurvatum genetic?


Genu recurvatum is a deformity in the knee joint so that the knee bends backward. Genu recurvatum is also known as “hyperextension of the knee.”

Hyperextension of the knee can occur to anyone. But the deformity is more common in women and people with familial ligamentous laxity. Ligamentous laxity is a cause of chronic body pain describe by loose ligaments. 

Knee pain and injury are widespread, particularly among very active people and athletes. A hyperextended knee is a type of knee injury caused by the knee bending too far backward. In some people, it is congenital.  In this deformity, excessive extension occurs in the tibiofemoral joint.


Some common causes of genu recurvatum may include:

  • Muscle weakness
  • Inordinate stress on your knee joints ligaments (ACL and PCL).
  • Sports and strenuous exercises such as football, lacrosse, or racing
  • Accidents result in trauma and injury in knee joints.


Certain key symptoms typically accompany hyperextended knee. They may include:

  • Sharp acute pain around the knee area
  • Popping sound in the knee
  • Impaired motion
  • Accumulation of water (called ‘water on the knee’’) in the knee joint.
  • instability in your knee and buckling
  • Inability to stand for a long time.
  • Swelling and bruising of the knee and surrounding area.


  • Women are more common at risk than men
  • Athletes.

According to the American Journal of Sports Medicine, female athletes have increased joint instability, putting them at a greater risk of knee injury than men, especially those who participate in high-risk sports.

  • People with familial ligamentous laxity
  • People suffering from joints inflammation (arthritis)
  • Victims of automobile accidents
  • Overweight. Obese people are more prone.


Treatment for a hyperextended knee depends on the severity of the injury. Often, begins with RICE.

  • R: REST

In treating a hyperextended knee, the first step is to stop the activity that caused the damage. 

For an athlete, he or may drop a few games. For others, rest may mean not walking on the injured leg or using a brace. 

During rest, a person may also:

  1. Have physical therapy to restore range of mobility.
  2. Take pain medication.
  3. Use anti-inflammatory medication.
  • I: Ice

Ice is a popular hyperextension treatment that helps to reduce swelling and relieve some pain. The affected person should apply ice to the knee for about 15 minutes at a time, many times a day. Ice should always be wrapped with a towel to prevent damage to the skin.

  • C: Compression

Compression involves wrapping the injured knee with some pressure. Elastic support bends or compression wraps are available for this purpose. Compression reduces pain and swelling from the injury, as well as provides a little support to the weakened knee.

  • E: Elevation

The injured knee be lifted whenever possible. The knee should be held above the heart. This can be accompanied by laying down and raising the leg on a pillow or any other comfortable platform.

For Severe Cases (Surgery)

In more severe cases, the hyperextended knee will require a surgical approach to fix the ligaments or alignment of the knee. 

Knee hyperextension can also result in a tendon tear or rupture. Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture is the most common tendon injury of the knee and can occur with extreme hyperextension. A posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) and popliteal tendon injuries can also happen. These require surgery to repair. 

In reconstruction surgery, torn ligaments are removed and replaced using a graft. Arthroscopy is used for smaller injuries.


Recovery time for a knee injury varies. In less severe cases, a patient may recover within 2-4 weeks after treatment. 

During recovery, the person needs to withdraw from any activity that will make the injury worse. Also, he or she should use the RICE method.

However, the surgery takes a longer time. It can take 6 months or more to recover from surgery fully. Despite the long duration of recovery, most people will see a full recovery.

Bottom Line

Hyperextended knee surgery is not a light matter. Not only is it painful. If not treated properly, it can have a long-term effect on your performance. 

Genu recurvatum has rendered so much untold discomfort to many. If you begin experiencing acute pain during exercise or after an accident, consult with your doctor to obtain a valid diagnosis.

Rest and chiropractics can be a way out of your predicament, and get you back in shape in most cases, however, be prepared for more intense therapy that marches the severity of your injury.

To prevent hyperextended knee surgery, pre-exercise activities should accommodate warm-up before exercise. Don’t overexert yourself. 

Exercise is good, but strenuous exercises are not too good for your health, especially when they become a constant practice. 

Athletes are advised to have regular health check-ups, and also practice rests.  Having a hyperextended knee can be highly inconvenient, but having the right information can help you get fit back in your game.


Is Genu Recurvatum genetic?

Congenital genu recurvatum (CGR) is an extremely rare condition observed at birth. It is associated with among other malformations, genetic entities such as Larsen syndrome.

How do I stop my knee from hyperextending?

5 Tips to Prevent Knee Hyperextension

  • Make use of Motion Intelligence Device
  • Use knee braces
  • Engage in strengthening exercise 
  • Warming-up before athlete events
  • Always take time to cool off after every sprinting event.

What does genu mean medically?

Genu is the Latin word for the “knee”. When the knee is referred to in medicine, it is just called the knee. However, the word ‘’genu’’ is also used in medicine as in genu recurvatum (hyperextension of the knee), genu valgum (knock knee), and genu varum (bowleg).

Why do people knock knees?

Excessive pressure on the knees – for example, as a result of obesity or loose knee ligaments (the bands of tissue around the joints that connect bones) an injury or infection affecting the knee or leg bones, genetic conditions affecting the development of the bones or joints

Can hyperextended knees be fixed?

In more extreme cases, a hyperextended knee will require surgery to fix the ligament or alignment of the knee. A torn anterior cruciate ligament(ACL) is the most common complication, but other tendons and structured supports can be damaged. The ACL is a pair of ligaments in the knee.