Runner’s Knee Treatment Options Provided by Orthopedic Specialists in Freehold, NJ
Runner’s knee is a relatively common type of irritation that affects the cartilage situated behind the kneecap (patella). When treatment is necessary to address pain caused by this condition — which is more formally known as patellofemoral syndrome — a full range of options is available from the orthopedic knee specialists at New Jersey Sports Medicine in Freehold, NJ.
Most often, runner’s knee develops through overuse of the knee joint, which can result from frequent jogging, running, cycling, and other active pursuits. Alternatively, the condition can also result from a direct blow to the knee joint, misalignment of the kneecap, or leg or foot issues, such as weak thigh muscles, leg-length discrepancies, or fallen arches. Some people experience a dull ache in or around the kneecap, especially after long periods of inactivity. Other symptoms including grinding, catching, and popping sensations in an affected knee joint.
At New Jersey Sports Medicine in Freehold, we adhere to a conservative treatment philosophy, which means that we generally reserve surgery as a last resort for treating runner’s knee. In most cases, we consider surgery only after nonsurgical approaches do not produce sufficient results. Usually, the initial therapies we recommend for runner’s knee include the “RICE” method to relieve pain, reduce swelling, promote healing, and enhance flexibility. A mainstay of athletes, sports trainers, and athletic health experts everywhere, the “RICE” approach involves:
- Ice applications to the knee joint
- Compression (using a knee sleeve or Kinesio Tape®)
- Elevation of the knee
If necessary to treat severe runner’s knee symptoms, we may also prescribe medications, physical therapy, rehabilitation exercises, or a surgical procedure designed to address the specific underlying issue that is causing the pain. For instance, our board-certified, fellowship-trained surgeons may recommend surgery to adjust a severely misaligned patella. Alternatively, if the cartilage underneath the kneecap is damaged (chondromalacia), we may consider an arthroscopic procedure to clean up the frayed cartilage.
If you suspect that you have runner’s knee, you don’t have to allow the associated pain to keep you sidelined for too long. Contact New Jersey Sports Medicine to schedule an appointment at our Freehold, NJ, location, where you can consult with an orthopedic knee specialist and learn about your treatment options.