Patient Information Resources

1089 Spadina Road
Toronto, AL M5N 2M7
Ph: 416-483-2654
Fax: 416-483-2654

Child Orthopedics
Spine - Cervical
Spine - Lumbar
Spine - Thoracic

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I have chondromalacia of both my kneecaps. The doctor sent me to a physical therapist, who showed me how to sit, stand, and move properly. I have a brace to wear when I exercise more than 15 minutes, and a set of exercises to do every day. Are these really going to improve my knee pain?

Chondromalacia, or patellofemoral pain syndrome, occurs when the cartilage on the back of the kneecap (patella) becomes cracked and worn. The rough surface "catches" on the bones underneath, causing painful symptoms. The exact cause of this problem is unknown. Anything that pulls the patella off the center of the knee can be part of the problem.

The muscle in front of the thigh (quadriceps) is supposed to help hold the patella in the middle. Pain or injury can lead to a loss of control in this muscle. As a result, the patella gets off track. This is a major cause of chondromalacia of the patella.

Exercises to strengthen the quadriceps and other measures to help the patella track normally can help. Two-thirds of all patients with this problem have an overall positive result with this kind of program.


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