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Patellafemoral Syndrome Patient Stories

Patellafemoral Syndrome Patient Stories
Compiled by Knee1 Editorial Team

Formerly known as "Patient Stories", this blog features first-hand accounts of users who have dealt with Patellofemoral Syndrome (PFS).


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 Blog Entries
Patello Femoral Syndrome - May 11
Hi! I am 14 and have recieved both an x-ray and MRI of my knee. The doctors said that I ahev no structural damage. My PT said that my kneecap is too far up too far to the ...
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Pain relievers to help with PFS pain - Feb 05
Does anyone know any effective balms/ creams (such as tiger balm joint cream, etc.) or dietary supplements/vitamins to help reduce the pain? I have to go through intense ...
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Severe pfs both knees with bad hips and feet pain - Dec 10
Hi, my name is Tracy and in oct. of 2003, I was diagnosed with severe pfs both knees. I had always wondered why I was not able to squat, or do certain activities without ...
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Patella Femoral Syndrome :( - Apr 06
I have been diagnosed with PFS about five years ago. At first the pain was bearable. Since then I have become even more active in sports, playing them constantly all year ...
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PFS 10 - Feb 23
As Aviation Ordnanceman in the Navy, you're always lifting and loading weapons, so you use your legs quite often. I've had knee problems before, but the pain was always ...
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Patello Femoral Syndrome
Posted: May 11, 2007 13:28:55 0 Comments.
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  • Hi! I am 14 and have recieved both an x-ray and MRI of my knee. The doctors said that I ahev no structural damage. My PT said that my kneecap is too far up too far to the right and the patello surface does not slide smoothly into place. Does this sound like PFS to you? What should I do? Have been attending PT for five months twice a week and have not noticed a big change. Where can I go from here? Please help I am a soccer player and only 14!
    Pain relievers to help with PFS pain
    Posted: Feb 5, 2007 10:40:34 0 Comments.
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  • Does anyone know any effective balms/ creams (such as tiger balm joint cream, etc.) or dietary supplements/vitamins to help reduce the pain? I have to go through intense physical training for six months and the pain in my knees have been increasingly getting worse. My career will depend on this six months, so I need any kind of treatment that will at least help me deal with the pain. Surgery is not an option at this point, and there is not enough time for effective physical therapy. Any suggestions? Thank you in advance for any input.
    Severe pfs both knees with bad hips and feet pain
    Posted: Dec 10, 2006 16:15:37 0 Comments.
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  • Hi, my name is Tracy and in oct. of 2003, I was diagnosed with severe pfs both knees. I had always wondered why I was not able to squat, or do certain activities without extreme pain. My problems are challenging as I am overweight and cannot perform many exercises. I also have very weak hip muscles which present a whole other set of problems. I am in the health care field and spend a lot of time on my feet, and that is when I started to notice leg and feet pain. In 2003 it got to the point that I couldn't take it no more, and when I went to my doctor, and he took xrays of my knees, he told me that my knees were going the same way my feet were(I am extremly toed out). He then referred me to an orthopod, who did a sunrise xray, and when he showed my husband the results, we were both shocked. The orthopod said that he had not seen such a severe case in years, and explained to me that this has probably been happening since I was a teenager. I aksed him what my options were, and he told me that he could go in and put them back in place, but that wouldn't do any good because the knee caps were shot and that I would have to have both of them replaced. I was told all the typical things, aggressive physical therapy to streghtned the hip and knee muscles and to loose weight. I wished someone out there could tell me how to do that when your mobility is limited. My pain is so extreme, that a lot of the time it is dfficult to walk, much less exercise. My pain is usually down the front of my thighs, hips, legs and feet, but very seldom in my knees, although they do swell quite a bit. And forget about climbing or descending stairs! This is very depressing, and I wish there was someone out there who could help me or at least point me in the right direction. I have tried everthing I know to loose weight, but to no avail, the latest if byetta injections, and that is not even working, I am now considering lap band surgery as a last resort. I really didn't want to go that route but I'm afraid I'm going to have to. If anybody has any suggestions, I would sure appreciate an email.
    Patella Femoral Syndrome :(
    Posted: Apr 6, 2006 20:31:09 0 Comments.
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  • I have been diagnosed with PFS about five years ago. At first the pain was bearable. Since then I have become even more active in sports, playing them constantly all year long. I have seen a surgeon annually until two years ago who told me that if i hadn't outgrown it in about two years he would have to operate and always resorted to send me to physiotherapy. Once again I was referred to a physiotherapist for the fourth time, same problem. Together we have tried everything, numerous treatments, exercises, tapings of every sort. Nothing helped for sure, and I came to the conclusion that I can not simply tape my knees for the rest of my life. I was discharged and referred back to the same surgeon i saw two years ago who now refuses to operate. My pain went away for a year, and just this year around September it has come back and is worse than ever. I am in constant pain even with simple, unavoidable tasks such as walking. The pain is bearable sometimes, but I have gotten to the point where i am tired of dealing with this. It is preventing me from doing things i enjoy with ease, and i do feel i am strong for not letting it completely control my life. However, the worst part of it all is that I am only 17 years old and was diagnosed when i was around 13. The only reason he is refusing to operate is because of my age. So my question is, Is it fair that i have to suffer just because i am young whereas someone who is 40 would get surgery? I wish that someone would put my age aside and look at the fact that i am in constant pain. As i write this, i am in pain. People tell me that surgery isn't good for someone my age, but i just want the pain to go away and nobody seems to side with me on this except my physiotherapist, and i truly believe the only reason that is, is because he too has PFS and knows what i am going through. He seems agree with me that I am far too young to have this problem and be dealing with it. I just wish someone would help :(
    PFS 10
    Posted: Feb 23, 2006 5:44:15 0 Comments.
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  • As Aviation Ordnanceman in the Navy, you're always lifting and loading weapons, so you use your legs quite often. I've had knee problems before, but the pain was always something I could handle through physical therapy. A few weeks ago, though, and I felt a stabbing pain at the top of my knee. I didn't think anything of it, but it didn't go away. A couple of days later I was sitting down at work, and when I stood up it felt like my knee was going to give away. I couldn't figure out what I'd done that could have caused this. Normally, I did my own PT and could deal with it, but this was a new kind of pain. I went to the Naval Hospital, where a nurse practicioner said he thought it was PFS. It's hurting when I put pressure on my leg, when I run, if it just happens to twist the wrong way, I had just never heard of PFS and I didn't know what it was. The nurse didn't really explain it, so if someone could help, I would be great appreciative. I'd really rather it not get worse than what it is, because I love my job, and if you're an AO, you know what I mean. Please help!!!
    7 down what next
    Posted: Sep 24, 2005 3:28:29 0 Comments.
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  • I have had problems with subluxing and dislocating knee caps for a few years now. It started with my right knee when I was 16 I really wasn't sure what was wrong with my knee but I had been having pain in it for a while mostly at work and the stairs at school. The pain became increasingly worse and eventually during the end of 9/01 I could not wait bear on my right leg. My mother took me to the ED and they just put me in an immoblizer and gave me crutches. About a week later I got an appoinment with an OS my brother went to who sent me for an MRI revealing a dislocted patella. With weeks of rest and PT I was still haveing pain in my knee and my knee cap was still coming out of place. My OS decided to do a lateral release in 2/02 which ended up not working. So in 8/02 I had a TTT Trillat with a LR. I had a long and hard recovery with that with some commplications mixed in. During that time I started experianceing pain and subluxing in my left knee. When I finally was out of the bledsoe brace and off the crutches in the beginning of December for two weeks and then I was back on the crutches and in an immoblizer for my left knee. My left knee ended up needing a LR in 01/03. In July of '03 I had the screw taken out of my right knee. Which was a litttle hard to recovver from even though it is a realy minor surgery because my left knee was subluxing all the time. So I had another TTT with a LR but this time on my left knee. I felt confident that this would fix my knee because I had been pretty much without incident on my right knee after I had it done. It was alright for a little while after surfery I held on to hope because my PT was confident and so was my OS. After having problems with my PT who I had been seeing since the very beginning of all this. I went to a new PT at the request of my OS because I was appox. 4 months out from surgery and the strength and codition of my knee was as if I had the surgery two weeks prior. I had the screw removed in 06/04. My kneecap was still subluxing and increasingly getting worse. I had built up all the muscles in my leg and was doing everything that I was told to do by my OS and PT. After many visits with my OS and telling him everytime that my kneecap was constenly subluxing and dislocating a couple of times a day with me having to pop it back into place. I now started to have problems with my OS and him acting like he did not believe me when I told him I am still having problems and the only think he would tell me was there is nothing more he could do. It got to the point where he wouldn't even come into the room anymore he would just have one of his fellows look at my knee who barely even looked at my knee. They would just have me sit on the table and they would bend my knee once and that would be their exam. So I decided to go for a second opinion. I got the name of another OS from a really good family friend who basically changed his life for the better. I went to this new OS on a Tuesday and his words were that in his twenty plus years of doing this he has never seen a knee as bad with this (you know that something you really want to hear from an OS) so he told me what he could do which was a VMO realignment. He was fearing that he would have to do another TTT with the VMO realignment. He got me into surgery on that Friday which was this past June 10th. Thankfuly he did not have to do another TTT just the realignment. I am almost three monthes out from this last surgery and my patella is dislocating and subluxing again. My knee is really instable and I am now in almost constant pain. My knee was good for the first month and a half or so and then I had a nasty fall and went a little backwards with this whole thing. My OS is still confident about my knee and I don't this past Tuesday my knee gave out onme while leaving for class and I haven't really been able to walk since.
    Injured knee 2
    Posted: Apr 25, 2005 17:57:38 0 Comments.
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  • I am age 16 and I am or was a runner.about 1 year ago i was just starting running cross country.But i was just running 1 and a half mile races.I thought that was far but it wasn't.So i got second place overall.Kalani rosell got first.So I started running 3 miles than 6 miles about 3 months after cross country.Than i started growing and my knee probly was overuse and knock knees.Even my ankle started hurting.But my ankle was the first problem off my body.Cross country started in August when it was 1 and a half mile. I was running 3 to 6 mile in November.But it started all on one race. The Terri fox run.That was 6.2miles i think.It had 4 huge hills.I ran it in 42:24. Than me and my coach went to watch the state meet for highschool of hawaii. I was testing there pace when they were running in the state meet.Than my ankle started hurting alot. Like i couldn't walk. i wasn't really scared because i never knew about injuries alot. So time went by and i got over it about two weeds later. Than on January 11 04 i ran the hula bowl race 5 K some hills. 1 big hill. I ran it in 19:24.Iwas almost turning 15 years old. Than about 1 and a half week later on my own course .Its a accurate course. I ran a 3 miles in 19:04 by my self. I was suprised. So i called my coach and told him. He said i shouldn't go that fast at this month. But i never listened so i started doing mile repeats.My first mile was 6:30.I was supposed to keep that paste for 4 mile.rest 10 mil between. But i never so my second mile i ran it in 6:20 tahn my third in 6:00 and my last in 5:50. i could still do more i was addicted to running. So around february my shin stared hurting alot so i never ran for a month. Than track came along in march and i wasn't running alot because my shin. So i did kind off bad in track for 8th grade.I ran the 400 meters in 4:04 withou no running for 2 months. When i finished the race my legs were in shock.i feel to the ground.Than i never ran for a few weeks.because my ankle and my shin. So time went but until school ended.than i started running again. Road races.or track.So my knee started hurting.but i still ran because i thiught it was ok.i got worse and worse. so i stopped running. im never ran cross country or track in high school.I have pattela femoral syndrome. My knee cracks alot.My ankle hurts.I grew 6 inches since last year.my out side off my quads are stronger than my inside so my muscles are off balance. my pattela cracks alot know.I have knock knees.overuse and growing panes.I could be running 4:55 mile if i wasnt't injured. i would be JV champ.my knees hurt when i wake or if i just stay in one area and get up. i dont know what to do know but just wait.in 16 know. my pane comes and goes at some points.
    Injured knee 1
    Posted: Apr 25, 2005 17:57:37 0 Comments.
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  • I am age 16 and I am or was a runner.about 1 year ago i was just starting running cross country.But i was just running 1 and a half mile races.I thought that was far but it wasn't.So i got second place overall.Kalani rosell got first.So I started running 3 miles than 6 miles about 3 months after cross country.Than i started growing and my knee probly was overuse and knock knees.Even my ankle started hurting.But my ankle was the first problem off my body.Cross country started in August when it was 1 and a half mile. I was running 3 to 6 mile in November.But it started all on one race. The Terri fox run.That was 6.2miles i think.It had 4 huge hills.I ran it in 42:24. Than me and my coach went to watch the state meet for highschool of hawaii. I was testing there pace when they were running in the state meet.Than my ankle started hurting alot. Like i couldn't walk. i wasn't really scared because i never knew about injuries alot. So time went by and i got over it about two weeds later. Than on January 11 04 i ran the hula bowl race 5 K some hills. 1 big hill. I ran it in 19:24.Iwas almost turning 15 years old. Than about 1 and a half week later on my own course .Its a accurate course. I ran a 3 miles in 19:04 by my self. I was suprised. So i called my coach and told him. He said i shouldn't go that fast at this month. But i never listened so i started doing mile repeats.My first mile was 6:30.I was supposed to keep that paste for 4 mile.rest 10 mil between. But i never so my second mile i ran it in 6:20 tahn my third in 6:00 and my last in 5:50. i could still do more i was addicted to running. So around february my shin stared hurting alot so i never ran for a month. Than track came along in march and i wasn't running alot because my shin. So i did kind off bad in track for 8th grade.I ran the 400 meters in 4:04 withou no running for 2 months. When i finished the race my legs were in shock.i feel to the ground.Than i never ran for a few weeks.because my ankle and my shin. So time went but until school ended.than i started running again. Road races.or track.So my knee started hurting.but i still ran because i thiught it was ok.i got worse and worse. so i stopped running. im never ran cross country or track in high school.I have pattela femoral syndrome. My knee cracks alot.My ankle hurts.I grew 6 inches since last year.my out side off my quads are stronger than my inside so my muscles are off balance. my pattela cracks alot know.I have knock knees.overuse and growing panes.I could be running 4:55 mile if i wasnt't injured. i would be JV champ.my knees hurt when i wake or if i just stay in one area and get up. i dont know what to do know but just wait.in 16 know. my pane comes and goes at some points.
    PFS 9
    Posted: Apr 17, 2005 9:57:36 0 Comments.
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  • Hi Dr. I am in my forty's, been active all my life, b-ball, volleyball, hockey mostly as a goal tender (lots of knee-bends). I never ever had a knee problem with either knee until this year. My left knee, is clicking now, and I have pain generally when I walk down stairs or a hill, or when I'm in a deep knee bend. I've been told and being treated for PFS. The pain is bearible, and I still manage to walk 3 km everyday with it. My question is, am I further damaging this knee by walking on it daily? What procedure should I consider to determine the true source of my current condition? The pain is located in two locations. The interior side of the left knee(inside thigh area) and beneath the knee cap. I have a clicking sound towards the anterior side of the left knee. Appreciate your advice, Sincerely, Mark Horth
    PFS, hip pain/popping, ankle popping, sacral torsia, IT Band Syndrome
    Posted: Mar 19, 2005 21:21:06 0 Comments.
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  • I am 24 year old woman. I have suffered the pains of PFS and associated problems since I was 13. However, at age 9, I had noticed perceptible popping in my ankles, they didn't hurt at that time, it only caused a little irritation. At that young age I was very athletic, skinny, tall and with pectus escavatum. I had to quit soccor and basketball at 14. I became very sedentary after that, but knee pain continued. I started seeing a PT in Sports Medicine. Over a period of visits I was dilligent in doing prescribed exercises. They observed an increased squatting depth before I straigtened my leg as a response to pain. The exercises prescribed were laying on my back with straigt legs then lifting them with weights wrapped on ankles, bicycle riding and swimming. I became frustrated at slow and imperceptible results, (remember I 13 years old), and quit that Sports Medicine PT. I consulted orthopedics, a little older at this time, they said I had PFS, but didn't explain what caused it, what it was, and no prognosis. I returned several times to orthopedics and they diagnosed me with Condramalacia patella and Patella baja. They did x-rays, MRI, physical observation, R of M, etc. They thought that since I was having popping in the knee joints that I had a miniscal tear. The MRI, was negative for miniscal tears, and no apparent damage to the cartilagenous tissue. No abnormalities in x-ray results. Orthopedics, or at least the professionals I consulted, didn't explain why I had popping and clicking in my ankles in hips in addition to the popping in my knee. I subsequently went back to them at age of 19 to explain that my pain was worsening and that I also had popping and clicking in my right elbow. The prognosis was that he could do a surgery on my knee, I don't remember the kind, and it had a 20% chance of working. At this point I was very depressed because I thought there was no hope. Still at age 19, I talked to someone who went to a rolfer who helped her TMJ. So I called the local massage school and they said that there was a woman who did massage and a gental form of body work roughly related to rolfing, called Asten Patterning. I saw her and not only did the massage help reduce the mental exaution caused by my pain through relaxing touch, but it helped with improving my condition. My knee caps moved to a superior position, (remember I was diagnosed with Patella Baja), and it helped reduce the amount of hyper-extention of both my knees. She gave me stretches to do, including one to make my spine more flexible. She said that I actually had a lower mobility of my fibula on the right leg. She said that after 8 months of stretches that I would be able to run again with out pain or popping, but that I would have to continue my exercises for the rest of my life. Running freely, never happened. So a few years went by, I consulted an Osteopath. He examined my legs and body and determined that I had sacral torcia, a tight Illio tibial band, a normal Q angle, and a patella that muscles pulled to the outside of my leg because the groove in my femur wasn't pronounced enough. I don't know what a Q angle is. If anyone knows please impart your wisdom. At a subsequent visit, I brougt my mother so that he could observe her walking in addition to mine. My mom and I are like Isotopes. We have an identical torquing movement on opposite legs of our body while ambulating (walking). She has a torquing movement on the left leg. I have an equal but opposite movement on my right. The osteopath was the first to diagnose me with insignificant scoliosis (less than 5 degrees). He adjusted me to fix the sacral torcia. The osteopath referred me to physical therapist whom he said would be able to help me with stretching the Illio-Tibial band, and correcting my scoliosis with rigorous weight training. First of all the physical therapist tried using the Astem System where she would scrape my skin with silicone apparatii and cocoa butter along my IT band, knees and the inside of the legs. It was painful and unproductive so the PT stopped it. They couldn't find a way to get my IT band to stretch. They gave me exercises to strengthen my abdominals. They filmed my gate and said after watching the video that I may have a neurological problem. I went back to the osteopath and he said that he thought I had a neurological problem he even mentioned that I may have minimal brain damage. I asked him if Feldenkrais (a form of body work) would help. He said it would be worth a try. I found a Feldenkrais practitioner who was a PT after calling all on a website list for the area I live in. I went to a neurologist who looked at my eyes, asked me a question about my birth, watched me walk, and checked my reflexes. He said that I didn't have any neulogical diseases that he knew of nor minimal brain damage. I went to Rheumatology, no autoimmune disorders or interconnective tissue disorders that PT suspected from my weak muscles around my right hip. I am currently spending about 30 minutes a day on PT exercises and seeing the Feldenkraise/PT about every other week. I am about to start weight training under her auspices. It took a couple of months of the PT getting to know how my body works and doing the exercises she has prescribed to me, and wearing a trochanter/hip belt before I noticed less popping. I have notably less popping in my right hip, and thus less pain than I did when I first began to see the Feldenkrais professional. While seeing the PT/Feldenkrais, I went to a chiropracter to get a thermal-imaging report to find out if it would be a diagnostic procedure to give me the key to what is causing all the problems. Thermal imaging gives a picture reading of spontaneous heat emmitted by the body. A professional trained to do and read Thermal Imaging can tell where pain is, tight muscles and nerve problems. He said that I had sacral-illiac torsion and that my diaphram was giving me pain in my back. I had a few adjustments by him and each time I returned with the same sacral-illiac torsion. I stopped seeing him because he said that I had a weak hip created by referral of problems from the small intestine. He said my organ was struggling probably because of emotional stresses I have. So I stopped seeing him because he essentially said that my pain was all in my head. But I can say that my back felt a little better after his adjustments. I am still in treatment. I'll keep posting when I progress in my treatment. I hope this gives professionals and individuals who share this problem some insite as to the cause. I still don't know this, but is my right femur formed differently than my left? Or is it simply a tight IT band? What causes the IT band to be tight? OR is it just weak muscles that after strengthening I will be like a person without PFS? I've seen so many doctors and I haven't gotten a difinitive answer. What tests need to be taken for the determination of the cause of all this hip popping, ankle popping, knee popping, tight IT band, sacral torsia, plantar fascitis, PFS etc.? I believe that I have exhausted all diagnostic procedures. Yours Truly, Kristin


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