Patellofemoral Disorder

No one likes being diagnosed with a disorder but i’m just happy mine is patellofemoral and not personality.  It’s unfortunate they both begin with the same letter though…

Patellofemoral Disorder, or Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome or Chondromalacia Patella as it is sometimes known is anterior knee pain caused by the patella (kneecap) contacting with the femur (thigh bone).  It is also what the doctor i saw this morning told me i have.

Not pulled ligaments, as the medically incompetent, socially awkward arsehole i saw on Thursday suggested.

There are lots of fancy articles to read about it on the internets, but since i don’t fancy freaking myself out (at this particular moment anyway) i am going to be satisfied with what the GP told me…

It is a biomechanical problem with several possible root causes, including over-mobility in joints, poor alignment of hips and knees, weak muscles and fallen arches.  It has likely come about because of my sudden increase in physical activity- specifically running, as running is known to cause excessive pressure and wear and tear on the knees anyway.  I currently have a build up of fluid and inflammation to both knees but more so my right knee (which i have said all along has been slightly worse).  The long-term prognosis is good but i do need to rest it to avoid further damage.  I have a sick-note for one week, a prescription for higher-dose ibuprofen and co-codamol and i’m not to run for 6 weeks.  If after that time i am still having discomfort and/or swelling then i’ll be referred for physiotherapy either through the normal channels or if it’s quicker then through occupational health. The likelihood is i will need the physiotherapy but she can’t refer me until it has been rested for a good few weeks anyway.

She advised continuing to wear my sexy knee supports (yay! I would have been sorry to say goodbye to those beauties!) And that when the time comes to begin running again i will need physiotherapy assessment/support to avoid the same thing happening again.

I am relieved, 8 days after the initial onset of pain, to finally know what i’m dealing with.  I knew it wasn’t ligament pain so all weekend i was sore AND grumpy because i knew i’d been totally been fobbed off. Now i’m just sore.  In fact not even so much because i have my feet up on the sofa, and i’ve taken my first dose of co-codamol and ibuprofen.  Soon i’ll be trippin’ (I kid you not, i am wayyyy senstive to that stuff.  Hopefully it won’t kick in good and proper until Chris is home?!)

For the first time ever since signing up for the Great Manchester Run i am seriously wondering if i can do it.

Actually, that’s a lie- when Chris first showed me the actual course i had a fleeting moment of sheer terror and doubt…

Yes, it’s that purple line.  All of it…

…but since then i’ve been feeling good, confident, excited and raring to go. Now i feel anxious, worried, and really disappointed in myself/my body at this giant hurdle i’ve come across so early in my training.

Six weeks.  S-i-x weeks.  And then maybe some physiotherapists will be able to help me get back on track?…


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