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Anterior Knee Pain (Runner’s Knee)

  • What is Anterior Knee Pain (Runner’s Knee, Chondromalacia Patellae)

    Anterior knee pain is the swelling of the underside of the knee cap (patella). It often affects young people who play sports and older people who overwork their knees. This disorder is also referred to as chondromalacia patellae (CMP), where 'malacia' means ‘softening’.

  • The causes of anterior knee pain are:

    • Injury – trauma to the kneecap, eg. a dislocation or fracture
    • Overuse – repetitive stress on the knee joint, eg. long distance running or prolonged jumping sports
    • Poor control of the muscles – when the muscles around the hip and knee do not work well to maintain the correct alignment of the kneecap
  • Typical anterior knee pain is a dull aching pain in the front of the knee cap. The pain can worsen due to:

    • Kneeling or squatting
    • Running
    • Sitting with a bent knee for long periods of time
    • Walking up or down the stairs
  • Treatment of anterior knee pain includes:

    • Avoiding activities that worsen the pain, eg. climbing stairs and running
    • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
    • Rehabilitation exercises
    • Rest, ice and knee compression to reduce swelling
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