It’s not just a problem that affects elderly people. It can actually affect adults and children of any age.

Sure, knee pain can be the result of an exciting sport injury, causing problems such as a torn ligament.  You may even be worried that you are getting one of a range of medical conditions that can cause pain in the knee joint, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or gout.  The truth is that most knee problems, especially in active people, are not due to these scary things, but are due to mechanical changes in the knee that cause friction, scar tissue and eventually pain.  

What is Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome?

There is also a condition called patellofemoral pain syndrome (often shortened to PFPS).  It is more common in regular runners or athletes. This condition causes serious pain in the knees due to repeated flexion and extension of the knee. It can lead to inflammation, swelling, and can often result in arthritis in the long term, if not addressed 

Patellofemoral pain syndrome doesn’t just affect people who regularly run. It can impact anybody who participates in regular sports that involve running, jumping, squatting, or even walking. 

This is because the more that the knees are used (when you are running or jumping around), the more sharp tension is placed on the muscles and tendons.  This sharp tension leads to scar tissue eventually forming, and that scar tissue creates friction, grinding and popping.  If your knee is misaligned (often related to misaligned hips or ankles) patellofemoral syndrome is far more likely to occur.  

Eventually, this dysfunction can lead to stress on the joint itself, wearing out the cartillage, resulting in osteoarthritis.


What Should You Do When You Have Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome?

The question is how can you overcome knee pain and patellofemoral pain syndrome? The most commonly recommended and most helpful treatment for this condition is rest. The idea is to minimize any activities that will cause stress to go through your knee joint.  However, rest alone will simply will not fix the underlying issue (the misalignment and friction) that is causing the pain.  If rest is your only course of action, you will most likely get PFPS again.  

Patellofemoral syndrome will occur in one of many muscles in the front or back of the leg.  A sport chiropractor, massage therapist or physio should easily identify the exact muscles where friction is occuring.  A sport chiropractor will also use a technique called ART (Active Release Techniques) to isolate the exact areas where scar tissue is occuring and release them.  This will improve the flexibility and fluidity of movement to sometimes instantly reduce pain and improve performance.  

A chiropractor will address the alignment of the hips, pelvis, knees and ankles using adjustments.  Adjustments not only realign the spine, but improve the function of the nerves controlling the large muscles of the hips and legs.  This improved alignment and coordination will help you minimize the likelihood that patellofemoral pain syndrome will happen again.  


Dr. Gary

Dr. Gary

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