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Patellar Dislocation Treatment

The kneecap is situated over the ends of the femur and tibia where they meet at the knee joint. This small bone slides as needed along what is called the trochlear groove, a dip in the end of the femur, held in place with tendons and ligaments. When the patella, or kneecap, is pushed out of its normal position or dislocated, it may need medical attention. Jonathan L. Glashow, MD orthopedic surgery and sports injury center offers patellar dislocation treatment at our facility in Miami, FL.

The kneecap can be dislocated when the knee is twisted, or the kneecap is pushed out of position. This often occurs when playing sports – a basketball or football player that suddenly stops running, then switches directions can pop the kneecap out of place. A blunt force to the knee can shove the patella out of the trochlear groove. The kneecap usually moves to the outside of the knee when it is dislocated. In many cases, the patella may shift back into its natural position, but sometimes it may need to be physically moved back into place by a medical professional. Even when the patella is back in position, there can be lasting damage to the knee joint that needs treatment.

Recovering from a Dislocated Kneecap

If you have a dislocated kneecap, it is common to experience a popping sensation when it occurs, along with pain. The knee may become quickly swollen, and it may be difficult or impossible to straighten the leg and knee. Even after the kneecap is repositioned, there may be lasting damage to the components within the joint. The tendons and ligaments may be stretched or torn due to the patella moving out of position. This damage to the supporting tissues may result in more frequent kneecap dislocations or other functional issues.

Treatment for a dislocated patella depends on the severity of damage to the other tissues within the knee. Strains or sprains may need treatment, as well as torn cartilage or meniscus tissue. A thorough examination should be performed on the knee to determine the best treatment plan to recover from the injury. Mild injuries may only require rest, ice and pain or anti-inflammatory medications – more serious injuries may need surgery to repair tissues and rehabilitation for recovery.

If you have a patella dislocation injury and need treatment, contact our team at Jonathan L. Glashow, MD orthopedic surgery and sports injury center. Call our office in Miami, FL, to schedule a consultation with one of our knee specialists.

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