The patella is held in place by the quadriceps muscles, the patellar tendon and ligaments on either side.

PFJ pain (vague pain around or behind the knee cap) is caused when the patella doesn’t slide in the centre of the femoral groove or is overloaded, causing the bony surfaces to rub against each other. This causes irritation between the patella and femur, and can be accompanied by swelling.

Contributors include:

  • Poor foot, knee or hip biomechanics
  • Weakness and poor control of the inner quadriceps muscles
  • Tightness in the outer portion of the thigh which pulls the patella laterally
  • Muscle wasting and decreased muscle function after surgery

Treatment by a Richmond Physiotherapy Clinic physiotherapist usually includes strengthening for the quadriceps muscles and stretching of tight muscles according to the results of biomechanical analysis.

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