Chondromalacia Patella - Symptoms

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What are the symptoms and signs of chondromalacia patella?

The symptoms of chondromalacia patella are generally a vague discomfort of the inner front of the knee, aggravated by activity (running, jumping, climbing or descending stairs) or by prolonged sitting with knees in a moderately bent position (the so called "theater sign" of pain upon arising from a desk or theater seat). Some patients may also have a vague sense of "tightness" or "fullness" in the knee area. Occasionally, if chronic symptoms are ignored, the associated loss of quadriceps (thigh) muscle strength may cause the leg to "give out." Besides an obvious reduction in quadriceps muscle mass, mild swelling of the knee area may occur.

Return to Chondromalacia Patella (Patellofemoral Syndrome)

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Comment from: nadia, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 26

I stopped working out when I got pregnant 7 years ago. A year after my baby was born I started working out like crazy, little did I know I was murdering my knees. I was diagnosed with chondromalacia patella. Five years after I still don't feel the same. My knees hurt every time I work out, walk long distance, or go up and down the stairs. I take painkillers almost every day. Running is a thing from the past; my knees gave up and I have tried so many times. My knees will never be the same again and that makes me so sad.

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Comment from: digby, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: August 19

I am a 24 year old female. I tore my MCL (medial collateral ligament) in my left knee when I was 16 and have extremely weak quadriceps as a result. Two years ago my left knee swelled to the size of a small football. I went to Accident and Emergency and was told it would die down. Six weeks later it is still not great. I went to the general physician. He referred me to a physiotherapist and did blood test for osteoarthritis. The blood test came back negative. The physiotherapist diagnosed me with patella femoral syndrome. I did 6 months of exercises. I was able to return to normal day to day stuff. Recently my knee swelled again. I can't get rid of medial swelling. Tape helps slightly. I have seen a different physiotherapist who says I need to see a surgeon as soon as possible, as there may be a likely torn meniscus or loose cartilage.

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