Patellar Tendinitis (jumper’s knee) is characterized by the degeneration and swelling of the patella tendon. The tendon connects the tibia to the kneecap and works in conjunction with the thigh muscle. It most often strikes gymnasts, basketball players, volleyball players and those who must jump.
However, it can affect anyone, even those who do not regularly participate in sporting activities. When left untreated for an extended period of time, it can become more difficult to correct and the condition may become chronic.
The chief symptom of patellar tendinitis is pain at the base of the kneecap. In the earliest stages of the condition it may only hurt while physically active or shortly thereafter. When patellar tendinitis progresses, the pain can be bad enough to hinder physical activities. When the condition becomes severe the pain interferes with daily life. Climbing stairs or simply standing up from a seated position can become excruciating. Other symptoms of patellar tendinitis may include:
The treatment of patellar tendinitis generally begins with physical therapy. It includes stretching and strengthening exercises. Treatment may also include: