patellofemoral instability

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Related to patellofemoral instability: Jumper's knee

patellofemoral instability

Laxity and/or tightness of the patellar restraints that results in abnormal tracking of the patella within the femoral trochlea. Patellofemoral instability causes pain during activity and may predispose the patient to recurring patellar subluxation or dislocation and to subsequently present with the clinical signs and symptoms of chondromalacia.


Nonoperative treatment consists of strengthening weak muscles and/or stretching the tight soft tissue that leads to abnormal patellar tracking. Surgical intervention may be required to release overly taut tissue and shave the articular cartilage associated with chondromalacia.

See also: instability
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners
References in periodicals archive ?
Our fatal pulmonary embolism, infection, patellofemoral instability complication rates are better than the literature rate.
Additionally, if the child displays patellofemoral instability on examination, he or she should wear a patellar sleeve while participating in physical activity to prevent injury (Winell & Burke, 2003).
Physical Assessment Common Abnormal Findings in Children Exam with Down Syndrome Measurements * BMI less than 5th percentile * BMI greater than 85th percentile Neck * Changes in size or consistency of the thyroid gland Atlantoaxial Instability * Weakness, neck pain, head tilt Heart * Mitral valve prolapse * Aortic regurgitation Musculoskeletal System * Hip instability * Patellofemoral instability * Deformities of the forefoot, pes planus, calcaneal valgus, pronation Note: BMI = body mass index.
Assessment and management of chronic patellofemoral instability. J Bone Joint Surg Br 2007;89:709-16.
Patellofemoral instability generally is defined as acute or chronic.
Patellofemoral instability is a common cause of knee pain and disability.