This injury happens when there is a break in the patella. The patella is a large, movable bone at the front of the knee.
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The patella is part of the knee joint. It is formed between the tendons that connect the thigh bone (femur) to the leg bone (tibia). It protects the front of the knee joint and acts as a point of support, providing increased power to the thigh muscles, which extend the knee. The inner portion of the patella does come in contact with the thigh bone part of the knee joint.
Some common causes of this injury include:
- Sharp blow to the knee (eg, during sports, a fall, or a car accident)
- Excessive stress on the knee (eg, during weight lifting, stair climbing, or overexercising a healing knee)
Talk with your doctor about the best
for you. Treatment options include the following:
After the tests, your doctor will determine whether you need surgery. If the patella is not badly injured, your doctor will place the knee in a
. This cast may need to be worn for six weeks. After that, you will wear a knee brace and do physical therapy. You may need to use a
Your doctor may recommend pain medication to reduce pain and swelling.
If the patella is in pieces, then you will need surgery. There are two kinds of surgery that are commonly used to treat this injury:
After surgery, you will need to do physical therapy. This can involve range-of-motion exercises and
. You will slowly build strength in the injured leg. In some cases, another surgery will be
needed to remove the
Depending on the injury, recovery can take weeks to several months.