Patellar tendinitis

Patellar tendinitis is an injury to the tendon connecting your kneecap (patella) to your shinbone. The patellar tendon works with the muscles at the front of your thigh to extend your knee so you can kick, run and jump.

Patellar tendinitis, also known as jumper's knee, is most common in athletes whose sports involve frequent jumping — such as basketball and volleyball. However, even people who don't participate in jumping sports can get patellar tendinitis.

For most people, treatment of patellar tendinitis begins with physical therapy to stretch and strengthen the muscles around the knee.

Symptoms Causes Risk factors Complications Prevention

Pain is the first symptom of patellar tendinitis, usually between your kneecap and where the tendon attaches to your shinbone (tibia).

The pain in your knee may:

  • At first be present only as you begin physical activity or just after an intense workout
  • Worsen until it interferes with playing your sport
  • Eventually interfere with daily movements such as climbing stairs or rising from a chair

When to see a doctor

For knee pain, try self-care measures first, such as icing the area and temporarily reducing or avoiding activities that trigger your symptoms.

Call your doctor if your pain:

  • Continues or worsens
  • Interferes with your ability to perform routine daily activities
  • Is associated with swelling or redness about the joint

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