I hope I am putting this in the right place, but I am pretty desperate to get some idea about my problem before I finally throw in the towel and go to the 'dreaded' doctors.
I am 21 and used to play basketball when I was in 7th grade and played with friends on breaks, but I have not played since then and yet I do swim a bit whenever the chance pops up. So I am not all that active anymore with sports like I was when I was in school, but I started to notice the problem with my knee after playing basketball. I did pull my muscles a few times when playing and got knocked down here and there, but there was no popping sounds then that I can recall and I never had a problem other than the general soreness of a pulled muscle at my knee that goes away few days later. I do know that at the most seemingly random of times when I am on my knees that when I go to stand up it feels like my left knee needs to pop, but it is extremely painful and I can only straighten my leg about half way. It tends to ease off if I just move to shift off my left knee to sit on the floor with legs bet towards me. There was no pain or even weakness in my knee when this happened then. It was rare to happen also and I got used to standing up a certain way to avoid this.
I did have to force my leg straight once to quickly go help my niece (her great idea to try and climb out of a cart) and I can say I do have a high pain tolerance, but even I teared up and swore I had somehow broken something. I could hardly put any weight on it for maybe 4 days without it wanting to give out on me or lots of pain and it did make a loud popping sound when I forced it to straighten that one time. The poor worker at the store was asking if I was alright since he heard it from a few feet over and claimed it sounded painful. After that my left knee has been getting worse in that now it happens when I go to get up from a chair and it now feels like the femur and tibia are trying to go separate ways at the joint and still that odd feeling like the joint is going to pop. I have to sit down until it eases off (testing if I can straighten my leg without pain) on its own and this can range in time but it is a pretty short time all considering. Though afterwords my knee feels weak and sore for about 2-3 days.
Just any idea what you guys might think this is would be wonderful. I did bring it up to my doctor once before when it started to happen, but she just chalked it up to 'growing pains' and left it at that. I am wondering if I should just go again now and bring up the issue again since it has been getting worse since I forced my leg straighten.