Patellofemoral Pain

Patellofemoral pain syndrome is one of the most common knee complaints of both the young active sports person and the elderly.

Patellofemoral pain syndrome is the medical term for pain felt behind your kneecap, where your patella (kneecap) articulates with your thigh bone (femur). This joint is known as your patellofemoral joint.

Patellofemoral pain syndrome is mainly due to excessive patellofemoral joint pressure from poor kneecap alignment, which in time, affects the joint surface behind the kneecap (retropatellar joint).

Patellofemoral pain symptoms are normally noticed during weight bearing or jarring activities that involve knee bending.  Stairs, squatting, kneeling, hopping, running or using stairs are commonly painful. As your patellofemoral pain syndrome progresses your knee will become painful while walking and then ultimately even at rest.  You can also experience kneecap pain when you are in sustained knee bend eg. sitting in a chair. A nickname for this condition is “movie-goers knee”.

As for the treatment, researchers have confirmed that physiotherapy intervention is a very effective short and long-term solution for kneecap pain.

Approximately 90% of patellofemoral syndrome sufferers will be pain-free within six weeks of starting a physiotherapist guided rehabilitation program for patellofemoral pain syndrome.

For those who fail to respond, surgery may be required to repair associated injuries such as severely damaged or arthritic joint surfaces.

The aim of treatment is to reduce your pain and inflammation in the short-term and then, more importantly, correct the cause to prevent it returning in the long-term.

There is no specific time frame for when to progress from each stage to the next. Your injury rehabilitation will be determined by many factors during your physiotherapist’s clinical assessment.

You’ll find that in most cases, your physiotherapist will seamlessly progress between the rehabilitation phases as your clinical assessment and function improves. It is also important to note that each progression must be carefully monitored as attempting to progress too soon to the next level can lead to re-injury and the frustration of a delay in your recovery.

For something that can be very painful and debilitating, it is very easily treated.

Seek help now by contacting us an organising an assessment.