Patient Comments: Chondromalacia Patella - Experience

Please describe your experience with chondromalacia patella (patellofemoral syndrome).

Comment from: JHawk, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 09

I started experiencing increased knee pain after playing softball in August. I am an avid player, and I am very familiar with the RICE method for sports injuries. After a month of RICE, my knee was not improving. I got an x-ray which was normal. I got an MRI, and I was told I have patellofemoral chondromalacia, as well as ganglion cysts. The doctor I saw did not give me very much information on treating this condition. It feels like a blowtorch is constantly running underneath my kneecap. The pain keeps me up at night. Ibuprofen, Aleve, and Advil are not effective in treating the pain. I wear a brace every day, and I have limited my more aggressive activities. This condition is already effecting my lifestyle, and I am not really sure where to go from here. I guess my next step is a second opinion.

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Comment from: Kenyav, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 16

I am 31 I have been dealing with chondromalacia patella for over a year. I have been to the doctor and hospitals because of the pain. I have had two injections and also weeks of therapy. None of that have seemed to work, the shots worked for a few weeks then they stopped working. I am getting surgery next month.

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Comment from: Phil, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: September 08

Well, I developed chondromalacia patella when I was 17, from a fall. I am 32 and have had pain off and on since I was 17. I just went to the orthopedist and my old MRI was apparently not good enough so I have to get another one. Assuming what I have read online here is true, it never gets better only worse. Now I think that is promising, so another MRI is going to say obviously, it is worse. Especially when I lift my leg from bent to straight, my knee cap bone skips across the joint with one loud pop. I did read about cartilage replacement somewhere, why are we not being offered that solution! What I have noticed with my pain is too much exercise or too little causes severe pain. I have a special brace that helps but it still hurts to go upstairs and cold weather makes it throb.

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Comment from: nicky, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 24

I am 40 this year and was diagnosed with chondromalacia patella when I was 17. I was very fit and active then and was training to go into the police force. They said it was the physical training I was doing that caused my knee problems. Every year I get times where my knee pain is unbearable but I have got so used to it now it is just my way of life. I don't take pain killers for it, I sometimes wear a knee sock but that doesn't really help. The doctors told me it normally goes away with age; I am still waiting!

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Comment from: Jknees, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: March 17

I am 23, I've had 2 ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) reconstructions on both knees (total of 4 surgeries) from basketball through high school and climbing post-college. The most recent surgery left me with patellofemoral pain syndrome and chondromalacia in both knees. The chronic pain was almost to the point where it was unbearable, however I started to do a lot of VMO (vastus medialis oblique) strengthening/targeting as well as some low grade hiking which for some reason seems to help the most with curbing pain symptoms. Lots of ibuprofen and ice help as well. I have a limited range of motion in both legs, so stretches are limited. I do try to do a decent amount of core strengthening as well as exercises to help with my hip alignment (going to the chiropractor has also been a great help). It took me a really long time to figure out what could help and what wouldn't, so hopefully this post will help someone out! That being said, in my case I do have a lot of damage from surgeries, trauma and general mal-alignment and will probably need a double knee replacement around 40. Bad knees are no fun!

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Comment from: tracie, Female (Patient) Published: January 07

I have chondromalacia patella (CP). I was hoping to find some encouragement but I see that we are all in the same boat. I started having trouble with my knees in high school. Running sprints my knees would buckle. I fought through it. Being young was on my side. I am now 42 and can barely get through an exercise class. After 2 days of class, I'm done for months. I had Euflexxa injection 4 years ago. They help very little. I gave up hope and decided that I would live in pain and not be able to be active the way I would like to be. I cannot ride a bike or do squats at all and climbing stairs is excruciating! I'm hoping to get some answers from a new doctor. I'm not going down without a fight.

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