Help! Diagnosed with Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS)

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Help! Diagnosed with Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS)

Patellofemoral Pain (PFP) is one of the most common lower extremity diagnoses given at an orthopedic practice (1).  The diagnosis is mostly seen in younger athletes and will be diagnosed 2.5 million times in a year for runners (2).  Along those lines, females are diagnosed with this disorder far more than males (3).  The main problem with this disorder is the fact that it is usually long lasting and can develop into a chronic condition (4).

A common practice in physical therapy to check for the root cause of the issues is hip weakness and angle.  There are many research articles out there that point to gluteal strengthening to help greatly reduce the pain at the knee caused from PFPS.  To check if hip weakness is a cause for your knee pain a good test is to stand on the affected leg while trying to keep your hips level for a period of about 1 minute.  If the hip wants to drop or you feel fatigue in the hips from the activity, it may be caused from weak hip musculature.  If this is the cause physical therapy is a great way to help reduce your pain and get you back to your active ways.  Contact an ApexNetwork Physical Therapy clinic near you for further consultation.

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  1. Wood L, Muller S, Peat G. The epidemiology of patellofemoral disorders in adulthood: a review of routine general practice morbidity recording. Prim Health Care Res Dev. 2011;12:157–164.
  2. Taunton JE, Ryan MB, Clement DB, McKenzie DC, Lloyd-Smith DR, Zumbo BD. A retrospective case-control analysis of 2002 running injuries. Br J Sports Med. 2002;36:95–101. 
  3. Boling M, Padua D, Marshall S, Guskiewicz K, Pyne S, Beutler A. Gender differences in the incidence and prevalence of patellofemoral pain syndrome. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2010;20:725–730.
  4. Stathopulu E, Baildam E. Anterior knee pain: a long-term follow-up. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2003;42:380–382.