Chondromalacia Patella - Experience

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What is the chondromalacia patella?

Chondromalacia patella is abnormal softening of the cartilage of the underside the kneecap (patella). It is a cause of pain in the front of the knee (anterior knee pain). Chondromalacia patella is one of the most common causes of chronic knee pain. Chondromalacia patella results from degeneration of cartilage due to poor alignment of the kneecap (patella) as it slides over the lower end of the thighbone (femur). This process is sometimes referred to as patellofemoral syndrome.

Return to Chondromalacia Patella (Patellofemoral Syndrome)

See what others are saying

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: b-leann, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 01

I am 30 years old and was so rough on my knees growing up, sports, and just normal 'I'm young and invincible'. Well, all that caught up with me. I was just diagnosed with chondromalacia patella and also an inflamed plica band. The plica band can be fixed, that one I'm not too worried about, if physical therapy doesn't work, we try injections, if those don't work we do surgery to relieve the tension. The doctor I saw was very straight forward (about the chondromalacia) and told me the only way to really get relief is to build up my quadriceps, that way should keep my knee cap from sliding and grinding. I have to avoid stairs, squats, running, and lunges; well, unless I just wanted to hurt. I also have to wear a brace during the day and ice at night when I get home. I am in the nursing field so it's pretty much impossible to keep off my feet. He has me going to physical therapy 3 times a week for 6 weeks to get the muscles built up as much as possible. My options as per him were, they can go in and scrape cartilage but then by doing that to me seems like it'd be just taking away what cushion there is, steroid injections, or just deal with it. Well, I can say wearing the brace during the day and icing when I get home and the Aleve and avoiding what I know will just aggravate my knee I have felt some relief, but I know it's only temporary. From my understanding from the doctor and research this is something I will have to deal with the best I can and that the ball is in my court to do what I can to help.

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