Controlling Patellar Tendinitis Symptoms

Jumper’s knee is a repetitive joint injury that specifically impacts the knee. Also called patellar tendinitis, the condition is often caused by overuse. The name jumper’s knee comes from the fact that the condition can develop from constant jumping on hard surfaces. The injury is most frequently seen in athletes and can lead to tendon strains that cause inflammation. For most people, at-home treatments can help ease and eliminate symptoms of patellar tendinitis.

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1. Rest as needed

Most people can fully recover from jumper’s knee by resting and avoiding unnecessary strain on the knee joint. Individuals with the condition need to give the joint proper time to heal before resuming activities. Attempting to engage in strenuous activity too soon can make the injury worse. If the site isn’t given adequate time to heal, the tendon can become permanently damaged and may require surgery.

2. Engage in strengthening exercises

Another way to control patellar tendonitis symptoms is by strengthening the joint. If necessary, consider enlisting a physical therapist to provide best practices and guide the patient on proper exercises. Physical therapy (PT) can aid in building muscle strength for the knee, ensuring that the joint can properly support weight as an individual moves and performs.

3. Enlist a sports trainer

Since most people who get jumper’s knee are athletes, the injury is most greatly associated with landing in a position that utilizes poor form. Over time, continually landing incorrectly will lead to an injury that won’t heal properly. After recovering from patellar tendonitis, consider working with a sports trainer who can provide proper guidance for biomechanics. The process ensures that an athlete learns how to jump and land correctly in a manner that promotes knee stability.

4. Avoid overtraining

Since jumper’s knee is a repetitive injury, spending too much time engaged in the same movements can increase the chance of experiencing strain and discomfort in the knee tendons. Consider opting for a therapeutic device such as a patellar tendon strap which helps to distribute the force from the tendon to reduce overall load when an athlete lands.

Considering alternative solutions

While most people with jumper’s knee respond positively to non-invasive solutions, other individuals may need to consider alternative options. More advanced treatments can include steroid injections to ease pain and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections to repair tendon damage and promote tissue growth. Additionally, some physicians will recommend oscillating needle procedures to remove damaged tissue without completely replacing the tendon. Other patients may need surgery for debridement.

Getting back in the game

Jumper’s knee can be painful, but with the right approach, symptoms can be controlled. Rest, strengthening, and proper form are essential for a full recovery and to prevent recurrence. Follow physician recommendations and engage in physical therapy when recommended for the best outcomes.

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