The fat pad syndrome is a set of symptoms associated with nipping ('impingement') of the fat pad between the patella and the femoral condyle.
Page updated September 2023 by Dr Sheila Strover (Clinical Editor)
Symptoms relating to fat pad syndrome
Symptoms include pain in the front of the knee which is generally chronic (long standing), and with sharper episodes exacerbated by knee extension, eg straight leg raise exercises or hyperextension, eg kicking or wearing high heels. The soft tissue under the kneecap is tender to palpation, and the bottom of the kneecap may be tilted backwards by contracted scar tissue in the fat pad.
Causes of fat pad syndrome
The condition may occur after direct trauma to the knee, or after surgical interference with the fat pad.
Treatment of fat pad syndrome
With regard to treatment, conservative (non-operative treament) is tried first, but it may become necessary to excise the fat pad.