Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome
This health problem is more common in women and people under the age of 40. It is also more common in people who are active, such as endurance athletes.
Other things that may raise the risk are:
- Increasing activity levels too quickly
- A change in running or activity surfaces
- A problem or imbalance in the muscles that support the knee
- Poor alignment of the kneecap
- Focusing on a single sport, such as running
The goal of treatment is to ease pain and promote movement. This may be done with:
- Limiting activities to rest the knee
- Medicine to ease pain and swelling
- A knee brace to limit the knee from moving
- Crutches to keep weight off the knee
- Shoe inserts to correct a knee that is not aligned the right way
- Physical therapy to strengthen the muscles around the knee
Surgery is rarely done to treat this problem. It may be used when other methods do not help.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
Edits to original content made by Denver Health.
Copyright © EBSCO Information Services
All rights reserved.
a (Runner’s Knee)
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians http://familydoctor.org
OrthoInfo—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.aaos.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Association http://www.coa-aco.org
Health Canada https://www.canada.ca
Crossley KM, Stefanik JJ, et al. 2016 Patellofemoral pain consensus statement from the 4th International Patellofemoral Pain Research Retreat, Manchester. Part 1: Terminology, definitions, clinical examination, natural history, patellofemoral osteoarthritis and patient-reported outcome measures. Br J Sports Med. 2016 Jul;50(14):839-843.
Patellofemoral pain syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/patellofemoral-pain-syndrome . Updated November 6, 2019. Accessed March 26, 2020.
Smith TO, Drew BT, Meek TH, Clark AB. Knee orthoses for treating patellofemoral pain syndrome. Cochrane Database of Syst Rev 2015;(12):CD010513.