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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Jumper's Knee: Patellar Tendinopathy

Jumper's knee as the name suggests is more likely to occur in sports like long jumping. In addition, long and middle distance running as well as bounding and hopping activities on a chronic basis can cause it. Basically, the pathology involves inflammation of the tendon of the rectus femoris.

Mechanism of the condition:
Patellar tendinopathy as the name suggests is tendiopathy of the rectus femoris below the level of the patella or the knee cap. Commonest site where this lesion occurs is the deeper part of the tendon where it attaches to the lower pole of the knee cap.

Symptamatology of the condition:
The condition is usually characterised by an insidiuos onset, meaning that the pain increase in intensity gradually. Pain is localised over the lower part of the front of the knee. Pain increases in character and intensity on continued activity like jumping, hopping, bounding and running. Furthermore, eccentric or negative contraction increases pain as well.

Diagnosis of the condition:
Usually diagnosis is clinical, however, ultrasound as well as MRI are the gold standards for diagnosing as well as for confirming diagnosis.

Cessation of activity to tide over the acute phase is usually recommended. Usually, treatment is notorious to heal and takes long. Physiotherapy involves strengthening surrounding musculature, and joint structures. Also, eccentric training with the help of an assistance is helpful. Furthermore, biomechanical abnormalities in and around the knee joint as well as training deficiences need to be corrected. Only cases resistant to physiotherapy are considered for surgical intervention.

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