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Patellofemoral Pain - Course Outline

Patellofemoral anatomy

Important patellofemoral concepts

Differential diagnosis of patellofemoral pain

  • Conditions interfering with the mechanics of the knee
  • Knee problems not necessarily involving the mechanics of the knee
  • 'Complex Regional Pain Syndrome'
  • 'Referred Pain', not originating with the knee at all

Conditions interfering with patellofemoral mechanics

  • Tight structures around the knee
  • Loose structures around the knee
  • Factors increasing the Q-angle
  • Overuse
  • Deformed bones
  • Stressed bones

Conditions causing patellofemoral pain but NOT interfering with the mechanics of the knee

  • Knee problem but not necessarily involving the extensor mechanism
  • Complex regional pain syndrome
  • Referred pain from the hip and spine

Symptoms associated with patellofemoral pain

  • The nature of the injury
  • The nature of the discomfort
  • History of swelling
  • Noises in the knee
  • Pseudolocking, instability, catching

Examination in cases of patellofemoral pain

  • Examination standing
  • Sitting at the edge of the examination table
  • Supine (lying on one's back)
  • Prone (lying on one's stomach)
  • Decubitus position (lying on one's side)

Imaging and X-rays for patellofemoral pain

Non-operative treatment for patellofemoral pain

  • Preventing Overuse
  • Mechanical support and improvement of posture
  • Releasing tight structures on the lateral side
  • Improving muscle balance
  • Relieving local inflammation
  • Artificial lubricants -Synvisc
  • Diet & nutritional supplements

Surgery for Patellar Mal-alignment

  • Releasing tight structures on the lateral side
  • Tightening incompetent structures on the medial side
  • Repositioning of the tibial tubercle

Surgery to slow established patellofemoral arthritis



Updated: 11 Apr, 2013
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