Chondromalacia patella

What is the chondromalaica of the patella?

Pain behind the knee cap associated with wearing of the cartilaginous surface on the back of the patella.


  • Grade 1 severity indicates softening of the cartilage in the knee area.

  • Grade 2 indicates a softening of the cartilage along with abnormal surface characteristics. This usually marks the beginning of tissue erosion.

  • Grade 3 shows thinning of cartilage with active deterioration of the tissue.

  • Grade 4, the most severe grade, indicates exposure of the bone with a significant portion of cartilage deteriorated. Bone exposure means bone-to-bone rubbing is likely occurring in the knee

How is it commonly injured

Overuse and Patellar Mal-alignment and abnormal tracking of the patella are causes of patello-femoral pain.

Signs and Symptoms of this injury

The most common symptom of patello-femoral pain syndrome is a dull, aching pain in the front of the knee. This pain—which usually begins gradually and is frequently activity-related—may be present in one or both knees. Other common symptoms include:

  • Pain during exercise and activities that repeatedly bend the knee, such as climbing stairs, running, jumping, or squatting.

  • Pain after sitting for a long period of time with your knees bent, such as one does in a movie theatre or when riding on an airplane.

  • Pain related to a change in activity level or intensity, playing surface, or equipment.

  • Popping or crackling sounds in your knee when climbing stairs or when standing up after prolonged sitting.

Current management techniques

  • Rest Ice, Compression, Elevation: all these techniques help to control the swelling and pain.

  • Minimisation of strength losses via specific quadriceps exercises

  • Minimisation of range of motion loss via specific exercises

  • Rehabilitation is important as a lot of pain can develop and get worse quickly due to the number of steps we take each day

Global Rehabilitation Network

  • We provide a complete online program of 12 consecutive weeks of instructions on how to conservatively manage this injury

  • We provide a global network of therapists that can chat remotely via our Telehealth services to guide you through the process week by week for minimal cost.

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