Patellar tendinitis (patellar tendinopathy, also known as jumper’s knee) is a relatively common cause of pain in the area just below the kneecap.
Patellar Tendonitis is an overuse injury caused by repetitive overloading of the front thigh muscle (quadriceps complex) of the knee. The occurrence of micro tears in the tendon exceed the body’s healing mechanism, unless the activity is stopped. The injury occurs to athletes in many sports including bowling, golf, soccer, rugby, volleyball, track and field, free running, tennis, diving, skateboarding and gymnastics and occurs frequently in athletes between the ages of 10 – 16 years.
The main sensation associated with jumper’s knee is pain over the front of the knee, but below the knee cap. Specific populations at high risk of developing this problem is athletes competing in a jumping sport i.e. long jump. Pain is exacerbated by sports, running or stair climbing. Swelling is usually localised to the area below the kneecap.
Physiotherapy will include Ultrasound, Cold Laser Therapy, Interferential Therapy, eccentric loading and
strengthening exercises, stretches, dry needling and biomechanical corrections. These corrections might include inner soles for your shoes, taping of the knee, bracing and posture correction. Uncommonly, surgery may be required, but it is reserved for patients with debilitating pain for 6–12 months despite conservative measures.