Chondromalacia Patella

What is Chondromalacia Patella?

Chondromalacia patella causes pain and tenderness in front or side of the knee and a grinding sensation in the knee. This condition is also known as patellofemoral pain syndrome or more commonly as “runner’s knee.” It is more common in adolescents and young adults, women and athletes that engage in sports that put a lot of stress on the knee.

Chondromalacia Patella Causes

Chondromalacia patella is caused by overuse or abnormal force on the knee, probably from a trauma or injury. But it may also occur if the patella (or knee cap) is out of alignment.

Chondromalacia Patella Symptoms

The main symptom is knee pain that worsens:

  • After being seated for a long time
  • When getting out of a chair
  • When going up and down stairs
  • When kneeling or squatting

Chondromalacia Patella Diagnosis

To diagnose chondromalacia patella, a doctor will perform a physical exam and discuss medical history and symptoms.

Chondromalacia Patella Treatment

Keeping the knee stabilized with wraps or braces and resting the knee are important ways to reduce pain. However it may be necessary to take over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for the pain. Exercises that strengthen the muscles around the knee to provide added support to the joint may be helpful.  Physical therapy may also help reduce pain and improve flexibility. If the problem is due to a misaligned patella, surgery can be necessary.

Chondromalacia Patella Self Care

One of the best ways to take care of your health if you have chondromalacia patella is to take a proactive role in your own treatment – a process called self-management. Read more

If you think you have chondromalacia patella, find out when to see a doctor.