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Sprain and Dislocation of The Patella

Wednesday, July 4th 2012. | Disease, Muscle Health

The sprain of the patella Definition

The sprain of the patella appears to be very painful. The cause may be either congenital (bad position) or accidental. The ball then leaves the track, usually to the outside of the knee.

You see this type of dislocation rather women and among men, the first dislocation related to congenital causes occurs before age 20.

Often the ball gets back on its own (spontaneous reduction). The problems are not solved yet. Like any dislocation generates damage to ligaments, bones and cartilage, other treatments will prove to be necessary thereafter.

The most common type of dislocation of the patella, usually accidental, is called traumatic dislocation of the patella, posterior dislocations are chronic or recurrent dislocation.

Sprain and Dislocation of The Patella Causes

Factors favoring the emergence of a dislocation:

  •      congenital patella, unstable and immobile (patellar dysplasia)
  •      awkward postures of the legs, eg knock knees
  •      abnormal positioning of the patellar tendon
  •      general weakness of the connective tissue or ligaments released
  •      imbalance of the musculature outer and inner front of the thigh
  •      high position of the patella: accidental or congenital
  •      twisting the knee, sliding at a sports practice involving the legs (skiing, football etc..)

Sprain and Dislocation of The Patella Disorders (symptoms)

Sudden and intense pain in the knee, the subject has the impression that his kneecap slips and the knee becomes unstable and collapses. You can see if the ball – usually on the outside – spring line of the leg. The subject can no longer stand upright.

The ball then usually returns itself, it returns to its initial position. But that does not mean that all is well. During dislocation, the patella can come tearing the ligaments and the supporting apparatus and internal consequences of the patella or the femur. The consequences: severe pain to pressure, swelling of the knee joint (synovial effusion).

Examinations (diagnosis)

We see right away if the ball is not in a good position. Other important clues: the knee bends and suddenly becomes painful to walk; hemarthrosis appears.

Other diagnostic process

  • X-rays reveal the causes of dislocation and potential bone damage. The radiographs of the patella in flexion allow growing of whether damage to cartilage (chondral).
  • Arthroscopic knee surgery under anesthesia is used to remove bone or cartilage fragments exploded and partially treat damaged cartilage.
  • MRI : cartilage, with any of it and review of the soft part of the knee joint

Sprain and Dislocation of The Patella (img : getliveedit.com)

Treatment Options

Even if the ball returns to itself in the correct position (autoreduction), the importance of treatment to implement is critical. Each of the patella sprain affects the cartilage of the patella and creates bone lesions. Injuries to the ligaments of the knee represent an extra risk.

About half of the dislocations of the patella is the cause of the appearance of other dislocations, when the first was not treated properly. Furthermore, the risk of damaging cartilage (chondral) increases with each dislocation.

The next stop treatment and avoid the pain of osteoarthritis of the patella in the long run.

Nonsurgical measures proposed after an initial dislocation :

  • Immediate reduction of the patella
  • Physical measures and strengthening the muscles of the thigh
  • Port of a special tire, which keeps the ball in place
  • Optionally, plaster of the thigh

In the presence of the knee following factors should be treated surgically :

  • Repeated dislocations
  • Breakdown of bone or cartilage
  •  Tearing the device capsular ligament of the patella


In principle, there are two main interventions: the treatment of soft tissue (tightening, suture ligaments) as well as corrections to the bone. The common objective of all these methods still maintaining the ball into the rail at the lower end of the femur.

Postoperative Treatment

The postoperative treatment must be tailored to the operation. Measures to strengthen the thigh muscles (internal frontal muscles of the thigh) and the extension of the back muscles are important here.

Possible Complications

Frequently, dislocations of the knee joint are treated too late.

Younger patients often decide for surgery only after a repeated number of dislocations. Treatment taken in time and is often beneficial, it achieves a success rate of 80% without suffering a knee joint stable and solid.

Without treatment or with treatment performed too late, the success rate is below 20% and the risk of osteoarthritis, chronic damage and extensive cartilage (chondropathies) increases.

A method of prophylactic training to strengthen the muscles of the thigh is recommended.

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