Everything You Need to Know About Patellofemoral Syndrome Treatment in NYC

Meghan Bishop, MD March 14th, 2019

Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options for Runner’s Knee

Runner’s knee, or patellofemoral pain syndrome, generally refers to pain in front of the knee and surrounding the kneecap. If you recently received this diagnosis, you probably have some questions. For instance, why is this pain happening? How can you make it stop, restore the health of your joints, and keep moving?

If you live in the area, Rothman Orthopaedic Institute offers top quality patellofemoral syndrome treatment in NYC. Our Sports Medicine specialists are experts at identifying and treating sports-related knee injuries. While we have the skills and resources to address your pain, you as a patient can benefit from learning everything you can about your injury. The more you know about patellofemoral pain syndrome, the more capable you will be to take necessary measures to heal and stay healthy.

Below, we give you the basics: cause, symptoms, treatments, and prevention methods. You’ll also learn how our knee physicians conduct patient evaluations and diagnose this injury.

Runner’s Knee: Cause and Effect

This condition has three primary causes. For some patients, multiple factors contribute to the pain they feel around their kneecaps.

  1. Chondromalacia patella
    This is another condition that may occur alongside patellofemoral pain syndrome. Chondromalacia patella refers to the degeneration of articular cartilage located on the underside of the knee. While the breakdown of this cartilage does not directly cause discomfort, the resulting inflammation of the synovium can.

  2. Patellar malalignment
    Maltracking is a term that indicates an unstable patella. The kneecap might be pushed out abnormally to one side. Several components may contribute to patellar malalignment, such as the misalignment of the legs and muscular imbalances.

  3. Repetitive stress
    This is the most common cause of runner’s knee. Active patients who frequently repeat the same exercises, such as runners and those who squat, climb stairs, and perform jumping exercises, may experience pain if the pressure on the joints becomes too much. People who have an improper technique or increase the intensity of an activity too quickly are also more vulnerable to getting injured.

Of course, the main symptom of patellofemoral pain syndrome is pain:

  • During exercise, such as running, climbing stairs, etc

  • After changing your activity level or playing surface

  • After sitting for a long period of time

The Best Non-Operative Treatments for Patellofemoral Syndrome in NYC

For most patients, patellofemoral pain is addressed without surgery. And, for many, at-home treatments are enough to alleviate discomfort. Still, if you have significant and prolonged knee pain, see a Sports Medicine specialist for professional treatment advice. It is also wise to make sure no other underlying conditions are affecting you.

A Rothman Orthopaedic Institute physician will first ask you about your medical history and the type and severity of your pain. Then, she or he will conduct a physical examination, checking which movements and positions specifically hurt. X-rays may be ordered to rule out other possible knee conditions.

After an official diagnosis, you can begin runner’s knee treatment. Here are four non-surgical treatments your doctor may recommend.

  • Over-the-counter or prescribed pain medications

  • The R.I.C.E. method (rest, ice, compression, elevation)

  • Physical therapy exercises

  • Orthotics (shoe inserts)

Preventing Pain

After recovering from runner’s knee treatment, you’ll want to ensure your knees remain healthy. Implementing these prevention tips will keep you strong and safe as you exercise.

  • Warm up and cool down.
    Stretch before and after a long run or workout. This keeps your muscles loose while either preparing or cooling down your body safely.

  • Take breaks.
    Because runner’s knee is chiefly an overuse injury, your knees will benefit from resting between workouts.

  • Wear high-quality, appropriate shoes.
    Make sure your sneakers absorb shock well and fit properly. Talk to your doctor about whether you need additional or corrective support.

  • Cross-train.
    Mix up the types of exercises you do. This way, you’ll put some pressure on other parts of your body while giving your knees a break.

  • Strengthen your knees.
    Building the muscles that surrounding your knee joints can protect them from injuries. Talk to a medical professional about what specific strength exercises you should incorporate.

For more information, or to schedule patellofemoral syndrome treatment in NYC, please visit us here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999.

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