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What is Patellofemoral Arthrosis, Know its Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Diagnosis

What is Patellofemoral Arthrosis?

Patellofemoral Arthrosis is a disease that affects your kneecap and results in a lot of pain thus making it difficult to climb up the stairs or even kneel.1 Patella is a bone that keeps your knee protected but sometimes due to fracture or any other problem, this bone may not fulfill the desired purpose but cause pain. This is when you feel the need to approach the doctor as the pain sometimes become unbearable.

Usually Patellofemoral Arthrosis is caused in the middle age patients and may begin from slight pain in your knee to a rigorous one. In extreme conditions, the intensity of the pain will be very high and if not treated at the right time you may face problems in moving about as well. As the symptoms are not very clear it is tricky to understand the initial symptoms of Patellofemoral Arthrosis and only the doctors can advise you on this matter.

What is Patellofemoral Arthrosis?

Causes of Patellofemoral Arthrosis

There may be a number of reasons as how Patellofemoral Arthrosis is caused. The most common cause of Patellofemoral Arthrosis is due to the knee fracture which may result in damaging the bone thus creating a gap.2 In some of the cases the bone may even break thus worsening the conditions. So the very first cause can be fracture which can cause Patellofemoral Arthrosis.

Then dysplasia is yet another reason why Patellofemoral Arthrosis is caused. In this case the patella gets shifted from the position so when you move the friction is caused thus affecting the movement and resulting in pain too. There is a lot of stress on the knee muscles which is turn become the reason of extensive pain.

Symptoms of Patellofemoral Arthrosis

Pain is the only symptom that you will come across if you are suffering from Patellofemoral Arthrosis.3 During the initial stages the pain might be less and with time it would increase to a large extent. It is because the knee movement is not smooth and the muscles get strained while moving around. The intensity of the pain may vary from person to person depending on the level of the Patellofemoral Arthrosis.

So if you feel any kind of pain in and around your knee area then it would be good if you consult the doctor and find the root cause of the same. Not all knee pain cases are Patellofemoral Arthrosis but consultation can help you to keep away from all types of confusions.

Diagnosis of Patellofemoral Arthrosis

Three types of diagnosis are performed for the patients who are suffering from the Patellofemoral Arthrosis.

  • Post instability arthritis which is the damage of the cartilage caused due to the joint dislocation.
  • Then you have the post traumatic arthritis in which the damage is due to any injury which is not treated properly
  • Overload osteoarthritis wherein the cartilage will get thinner with time.

Treatment for Patellofemoral Arthrosis

There are two types of treatments for patellofemoral arthrosis, surgical and non-surgical. Here we will talk about both of them.

Non-Surgical Treatment for Patellofemoral Arthrosis

As the name indicates, no patellofemoral arthrosis surgery is involved in this process but treatment is done through medicines, therapies and exercises. Some of the treatments that are performed under the non-surgical category for patellofemoral arthrosis are:

  • Medications – Drugs are prescribed by the doctor to heal the swelling and overcome the pain too in Patellofemoral Arthrosis.
  • Weight Loss – This is also a big reason of pain in the knee so if your weight is more the doctor will ask you to perform exercises and workouts to reduce it.
  • Therapies – Different kinds of therapies are available for Patellofemoral Arthrosis that not only make the movement smooth but with time you can climb stairs and even find relief from pain and swelling.
  • Regular Exercise – With this you can bring down the stiffness of the muscles which causes a lot of pain. Walking is one of the best exercises for Patellofemoral Arthrosis.

Surgical Treatment for Patellofemoral Arthrosis

If the Patellofemoral Arthrosis cannot be treated with medicines and therapies, then surgery is the last option.

  • Realignment is quite effective and can be done to ensure better movement.
  • Grafting is yet another surgery in which the gap is filled up to treat Patellofemoral Arthrosis
  • Tuberosity transfer and Chondroplasty are also surgical options for Patellofemoral Arthrosis.

Exercises for Patellofemoral Arthrosis

Exercises are a good way to get rid of the pain and swelling associated with Patellofemoral Arthrosis. Usually doctors advise the patients to walk more and even swimming can be very effective in treating patellofemoral arthrosis.


Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:July 8, 2019

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