ZocdocAnswersDoes chondromalacia patella ever go away?

Question

Does chondromalacia patella ever go away?

I play high school sports and was diagnosed with chondromalacia patella in my knees around 10 months ago. I haven?t exercised in a while, and have gone through physical therapy, but my knees still hurt. Will this ever go away? Is there anything else I can do???

Answer

Chondromalcia patella, or patello femoral pain syndrome, or runner's knee (the condition has many names) does take a long time to resolve sometimes! Given that this has been going on almost a year for you and that it is impacting your ability to play high school supports, I highly recommend that you go to see a sports medicine doctor or an athletic trainer who specializes in this condition if you have not done so already. Chondromalacia patella occurs when the knee cap does not track properly over the thigh bone (femur). This causes some break down of the cartilage on the undersurface of the knee cap, leading to pain especially with exercise or when the knees are bent. In addition to resting from vigorous athletic activity, physical therapy can help. However, it has to be a type of physical therapy which is directed at strengthening the quadriceps muscles, as often an imbalance in the quadriceps muscles underlies chondromalacia patella. Also it is helpful to wear shoes that correct for over pronation, if this is a problem you suffer from. Start by going to see a sports medicine doctor, as I think they will have a lot of helpful suggestions.

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