Knee Pain Treatment

Knee pain is a common reason for patients to seek the help of manual therapists. It can be experiences as a result of activity, overuse, and general wear and tear, or as a result of inactivity and age. Some examples of conditions of the knee that are helped by manual therapies are: patellofemoral syndrome, illiotibial band syndrome, and osteoarthritis.

Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (PFPS) is the most common cause of knee pain in the outpatient setting. It presents with symptoms of pain on, around, or behind the patella (knee cap). It is caused by imbalances in the forces controlling patellar tracking during knee flexion and extension, particularly with overloading of the joint. Risk factors include overuse, trauma, muscle dysfunction, tight lateral restraints, patellar hypermobility, and poor quadriceps flexibility. Typical symptoms include pain behind or around the patella that is increased with running and activities that involve knee flexion.

Treatment Options: Physical therapy can be used to help strengthen muscles to facilitate muscular balance. Stretching and rolling, especially of tight lateral leg muscles can help as well. Graston Technique and Active Release can help clear adhesions and scar tissue in the quadriceps, which relieves tension over the patella, and allows the knee cap to track properly.

Illiotibial Band Syndrome:

Illiotibial Band syndrome (ITB syndrome) is a term used to describe a condition in which a band of tissue on the outside of the upper leg causes symptoms of pain, stiffness, snapping, and altered movement. The symptoms may be felt at the hip or outer upper thigh but are more commonly experienced at the outside of the knee during running, walking, and other repetitive movements. The cause of ITB syndrome is usually dysfunctional biomechanics of the hip resulting in compensation patterns leading to symptoms. Manual therapy and rehabilitation exercises are very effective in the treatment of ITB syndrome.

Treatment options include: Graston technique, Active Release Techniques, IMS, and rehabilitation exercises.

Osteoarthritis:
Osteoarthritis occurs when the joint space between articulating bones decreases; it can occur at any joint within the body and is a very common condition resulting from use, overuse, and normal processes of aging. Osteoarthritis can cause pain and stiffness leading to overuse of surrounding soft tissues as a compensation mechanism. Although osteoarthritis, itself, cannot be reversed, the symptoms of it can be significantly reduced using manual therapies and exercise.

Treatments for the symptoms of osteoarthritis: strength and stability exercise, acupuncture, Laser, and Active Release Techniques.