Patellofemoral pain is a broad term that describes pain at the front of the knee and in and around the patella (kneecap).
Causes may be due to muscle imbalances around the knee and/or lower leg resulting in overload to the kneecap and cartilages and/or maltracking or malalignment of the patella.
It is usually more common in younger adults.
Signs & Symptoms
- Dull/aching sort of pain to the front of the knee and/or around or behind the kneecap.
- A gradual onset of symptoms.
- Crepitus – clicking, crunching, scratching type sensations.
- Pain is aggravated by sitting for long periods with bent knees, descending stairs or hills or sporting activities
- A giving way sensation is occasionally experienced.
- The outlook for patellofemoral pain is usually very good.
- Oral pain relief is often recommended by GPs, such as paracetamol (with or without codeine), or a non steroidal anti-inflammatory, such as ibuprofen.
- Physiotherapy or Osteopathy may be provided to optimise knee joint function and stabilise surrounding muscles through targeted exercises. (see below)
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