Patellofemoral pain syndrome



Patellofemoral pain syndrome



Patellofemoral pain syndrome


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USMLE® Step 1 questions

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High Yield Notes

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Patellofemoral pain syndrome

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USMLE® Step 1 style questions USMLE

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A 16-year-old girl comes to her pediatrician’s office for evaluation of left knee pain. The pain has been present for the past 3-4 months, and worsens with running, prolonged sitting, or when going up or down steps. The patient also mentions episodes of her left knee “buckling.” She has taken ibuprofen which occasionally alleviates the pain. Vitals are within normal limits. BMI is 19.5 kg/m2. Physical examination shows a normal gait. There is no visible knee deformity. When the patient is asked to perform squats, there is significant pain in the left knee. Which of the following best describes the etiology of this patient’s condition?  


Patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS) is a knee injury characterized by knee pain originating from the contact of the posterior surface of the patella with the femur.

PFPS pain is usually felt in the front of the knee and may be worse when sitting with bent knees for a long time, going up or down stairs, or when getting up from a seated position. Treatment involves pain management, patella bracing, lower extremity muscle strengthening, and stretching the hamstrings.


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