As the name suggests, runner's knee is a common ailment among runners. But it can also strike any athlete who does activities that require a lot of knee bending -- like walking, biking, and jumping. It usually causes aching pain around the kneecap.
Runner's knee isn't really a condition itself. It's a loose term for several specific disorders with different causes. Runner's knee can result from:
Overuse. Repeated bending of the knee can irritate the nerves of the kneecap. Overstretched...
strains, or other injuries to the ligaments and
tendons that support the kneecap.
A torn ligament, such as the
torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) or the
medial collateral ligament (MCL).
in the rubbery cushions of the knee joint (menisci).
Breaks (fractures) of
the kneecap, lower portion of the femur, or upper part of the tibia or fibula.
(See an illustration of the
structures of the knee .) Knee fractures most commonly are caused by abnormal force,
such as a falling on the knee, a severe twisting motion, severe force that
bends the knee, or when the knee forcefully hits an object.
dislocation. Pieces of bone or tissue (loose bodies) from a fracture or dislocation may get caught in the joint and
interfere with movement.
Grinding may occur with joint movement because of other conditions,
Degenerative joint disease (osteoarthritis).
Wear and tear on the
material that absorbs shock and provides a gliding surface (articular cartilage) on the underside of the kneecap
Prompt treatment is important to promote healing and prevent
Sydney Youngerman-Cole, RN, BSN, RNC
Susan Van Houten, RN, BSN, MBA
Primary Medical Reviewer
William M. Green, MD - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Patrick J. McMahon, MD - Orthopedics
September 18, 2009
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
September 18, 2009
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