The patellar tendon, also known as the patellar ligament joins the kneecap (patella) to the shin bone (tibia). The large quadricep muscles at the front of the thigh pull on the kneecap producing huge forces through the patellar tendon, especially when jumping.
Patellar tendonitis or jumper's knee is an overuse injury that results in pain at the front of the knee, localized at a point towards the bottom of the kneecap. Repetitive strain from too much running or jumping causes inflammation or degeneration of the patellar tendon.
The bottom of the patella will be very tender when pressing in and may appear larger or thicker than the unaffected side. The athlete is likely to experience aching and stiffness after exercise and pain when contracting the quadriceps muscles. In particular jumping activities are likely to cause the most pain or discomfort.
Initially, this may seem like just a nagging injury that can be recovered from after a short period of rest. Many athletes continue to train and compete on it as it may not be debilitating at the time. If left untreated, however and the pain becomes chronic, it can be very difficult to treat this injury naturally.
Natural treatment for most cases of patella tendonitis (jumper's knee) consists of reducing the initial pain and inflammation through rest and ice followed by a rehabilitation program which would include chiropractic manipulation and mobilization techniques as well as performing specific exercises and stretches to strengthen the tendons in the area.
It is common for other misaligned joints to contribute to the knee pain. A thorough examination of the spine and nervous system can assist with your prognosis.
Join us at our free Body Signals Workshop on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 @ 6:00 at our office where Dr. Livingstone will focus on the lower extremity – specifically the hips and knees. Call (403) 320-1015 today to register.