Patellar Tendonitis

Another source of knee pain is Patellar Tendonitis, or ‘jumper’s knee’.  It is more common in jumping sports like basketball and volleyball, but runners can also be affected.  The pain most often starts with no particular injury, but may be sore after a run.  Later, the pain comes on quickly with initial use, but fades to a dull ache with continued activity.  This pain is more pronounced with downhill or going down stairs.

If you roll your finger under the bottom part of your knee cap and it hurts then, this is your problem.  This is most often associated with overuse and tight quadriceps muscles.  Initial treatment, includes relative rest, ice, stretching and anti-inflammatory medications.

If this is not helpful and the condition lasts for several weeks then, eccentric exercises are needed to restore tendon health.  These exercises are not the ‘lifting’ part of the exercise, but the ’lowering’ part of the exercise.  This is similar to walking down a hill of 30-45 degrees in a slow and very controlled manner.  Initially, it is painful, but afterwards the knee will feel better, especially after doing it three times a week for 3-4 weeks.

Matt Evans, MD

Dr. Matt Evans Dr. Matt Evans is a sports medicine doctor practicing with Utah Valley Orthopedics & Sports Medicine. Dr. Evans offers comprehensive Sports Medicine care for athletes and non-athletes alike, and his goal is to treat the whole person without surgery, if possible.

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