The knee is one of the most unique joints in the body. The kneecap is the largest 'sesamoid' a bone wrapped inside a tendon that connects the large muscles on the front of the thigh, the quadriceps muscles to the lower leg bone.
The quadriceps tendon helps us straighten our leg; this part of the knee is like a lever made-up of the quadriceps muscle group, quadriceps tendon, patella, patellar retinaculum, patellar ligament and various soft tissue in the area. The second job of this group of muscles and tendons and ligaments is very important for stabilizing the leg.
What are the symptoms of Quadriceps Tendinitis?
If you are suffering from Quadriceps Tendinitis pain in the area at the bottom of the thigh, just above the knee cap. The most noticeable pain is when you move your knee, the more you move the more tenderness develops in the area of the tendon attachment just above the kneecap.
Pain when tightening or flexing the quadriceps with a straight leg.
- Pain when the top of the kneecap is pressed.
- Irritation or pain when moving from a crouched position to a standing position.
- Stiffness or tightness in the morning when you get up or the day following any activity or exercise that irritated the area.
- Tenderness and swelling in or around the quadriceps tendon
- You may feel a sensation of warmth or burning pain.
What causes Quadriceps Tendinitis?
Quadriceps tendonitis is caused by repetitive use of this tendon. This condition is most common in an athlete who are involved in sports that require a lot of jumping such as basketball, volleyball and jogging, or in a sport that requires a lot of stopping and starting.
Inflammation in the quadriceps tendon is often due to irritation and/or micro-tearing of the collagen fibers. When the fibers tear, they become weaker, inflamed and swollen causing pain and tenderness in the area.
There are 2 types of tendonitis, acute and chronic. Acute quadriceps tendonitis refers to inflammation that comes on suddenly, usually from a tendon strain or overloading it during exercise. Chronic quadriceps tendonitis occurs over time and generally results from long term repetitive use of the quadriceps tendon.
With both types of tendinitis, scar tissue develops on the tendon as the tears begin to heal. This scar tissue mends the tears in an abnormal way leaving the collagen fibers weaker and more prone to further injury. In the case of chronic quadriceps tendinitis, a build up of scar tissue over a long period of time will make the tendon and the entire knee joint more prone to re-injury.
Quadriceps Tendinitis Risk Factors include:
- Participating in "jumping" sports such as basketball, volleyball and jogging.
- Having diabetes, gout or para-hypothyroidism.
- Incorrect footwear, while participating in a sport
- Age can be a factor because as we grow older our tendons become more brittle and therefore prone to injury.
- Activities that require sharp, sudden changes of direction or lots of stopping and starting.
- Mis-alignment of the foot, ankle, and leg including flat feet, leg length differences, tracking abnormalities, etc.
Do you really have Quadriceps Tendinitis?
Other conditions which can be a cause of anterior (front) knee pain are commonly confused with quadriceps tendonitis.
Quadriceps Tendinosis - Tendinosis refers to a non-inflammatory, degeneration of the collagen fibers in a tendon. This tissue break down is often caused by repetitive stress on the tendon fibers and the failure for the fibers to heal.
Partial Quadriceps Tendon Tears - Usually seen in people over the age of 40 as the tissue as part of aging degenerates. A sudden trauma to the tendon may cause it to tear or may spontaneously tear with people suffering from diabetes mellitus, gout, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, end-stage renal disease, prolonged systemic steroid use or hyperparathyroidism. Early surgical repair within 27hrs is the key to successful healing of the tendon. (source: National Library of Medicine)
Quadriceps Tendon Complete Ruptures - If you are suffering from a complete rupture of the quadriceps tendon you will have a very painful and swollen knee. The rupture has left you unable to walk or you may walk with assistance or holding your leg as straight as possible. You may notice a gap in the tendon just above the kneecap where the muscle and tendon have broken away from the bone. Early surgical repair within 27hrs is the key to successful healing of the tendon. (source: National Library of Medicine)
Synovial Plicae - Weakness in the knee as if it is unstable while walking up or down stairs or slopes. Pain with the extension of the knee, as well as may hearing a cracking noises when flexing and straightening your knee. Known as "pathological synovial plica syndrome" considered a embryonic relic. At the 12th week of life the synovial plica forms in the knee, as we grown and mature this tissue then is becomes entangled within the knee and is unable to dissolve and remains in our adulthood. Estimated that 50% of the population has the 'plicae' after birth. It is common for this condition to be over looked by doctors. (source: National Library of Medicine)
Calcific Tendinitis - A chemical reaction in the body, after injury to the soft tissue, the body is healing but instead of healthy tissue, it creates calcium in the tendon. If you are suffering calcific tendinitis of the quadriceps tendon, you may have pain and stiffness that may last for a few weeks to two months and suddenly disappear. If calcific tendinitis is return a number of times is now chronic you may notice your pain linger for a few months to years.
Chondromalacia patella - Causes a dull, aching pain in the front of your knee. There is damage or softening of the cartilage on the underside of the knee cap. Pain while walking up or down stairs, kneeling or squatting or after sitting for long periods of time with your knee bent.
Hoffa's syndrome or fat pad impingement - Pain, inflammation, and swelling at the front of the knee cap and along the sides of the patellar tendon. Increased pain when standing for long periods of time, squatting or using stairs and or pain when you extended you knee. Hoffa's syndrome is caused by at pad either suffers a contusion or an injury, resulting in damage and swelling. This can lead to the Hoffa's pad becoming trapped between the femur and the patella every time the leg is extended.
Patellofemoral Subluxation - Pain on the sides and around the knee cap. The kneecap slides up and down in a groove on the end of the thigh bone (trochlear groove). In some people the kneecap is pulled toward the outside of the knee and the kneecap does not slide in its groove. This condition normally affect adolescents and younger children.
Patellofemoral Arthritis - Causes pain in the front of your knee and can make it difficult to kneel or climb stairs. The kneecap slides up and down in a groove on the end of the thigh bone (trochlear groove). Patellofemoral arthritis occurs when the cartilage along the trochlear groove and on the underside of the patella wears down and becomes inflamed.
Conditions may be associated with quadriceps tendonitis including diabetes, hyper-pressure, gout, and para-hypothyroidism.
How do I diagnosis Quadriceps Tendonitis
A visit to your doctor is the best way for diagnoses of any type of knee pain. To help your doctor achieve a proper diagnosis, he/she will begin with a medical history about you, your current condition and symptoms. He/she will inquire about the intensity of your present pain, the duration of your symptoms and the limitations you are experiencing. Details about what instigated the problem, when it started, and whether or not you have ever had treatments for this or a similar condition in the past, are very helpful in assessing your injury.
Diagnostic testing may be ordered help discover your source of knee pain. Often used to rule out other conditions.
X-rays will provide a two-dimensional image of the overall structure of your knee. They are helpful in identifying knee instability, abnormal bone shapes (bone spurs or bone cysts, fractures, wear and tear on the joints).
MRIs (magnetic resonance imaging) will provide more detailed information and will help to evaluate the soft tissues in and around your knee (muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other connective tissues). It can identify ligament or tendon damage, and can help to determine the extent of your injury, the displacement and degree of your tear or inflammation, as well as other associated knee conditions.
We have tools that will help you to prevent and treat the symptoms of quadriceps tendinitis. When it comes to your injured knee, it's best to start effective long term healing right away. Our Advisers are highly trained individuals and will help find the long term healing goal that's right for YOU. Why wait?
Call today and get on the road to recovery faster than ever before!
Call now! Toll Free: 1-866-237-9608
How Do I Cure Quadriceps Tendonitis -
What You Can Do!
The good news is that most cases of quadriceps Tendonitis will heal with simple home conservative treatments and surgery is often not needed!
It's generally understood by doctors and surgeons, that surgery will introduce more scar tissue into the soft tissue of the knee. This added scar tissue will be problematic, requiring physical therapy and conservative treatment options post-surgery. This is why surgery is only performed as a last resort for chronic tendonitis injuries that won't heal with conservative treatment methods.
Some conservative treatment methods recommended include:
- Rest - This is important for initial healing because without proper rest you're at risk for increased pain and inflammation. This can make your quadriceps tendonitis even worse and turn an acute injury into a chronic one.
- Avoid Activities that Caused Your Injury - While resting your knee it's also important to avoid all activities that may have caused your tendonitis (especially any repetitive knee movement). Continuing on with regular activities will not only make your injury worse, but limping just to get by can also wind up giving you over compensation pain in other areas of your body.
- Apply Cold Compression - Immediate cold (using a Freezie Wrap®) will help you to manage pain while getting rid of the pain and inflammation. Immediate pain relief and reduced inflammation can also relieve some of the pressure that's being placed on your knee and stop your injury from getting worse.
- Use Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy™ - After any inflammation and/or swelling has been reduced, you can use your own blood flow to maximize healing of damaged tissue and maintain healthy blood flow to your quadriceps tendon. This also boost overall long-term healing of this injury.
Other Conservative Treatment Methods can be Risky
Cortisone (Corticosteroid) Injections
Some of the options your doctor may recommend include drugs or medications like NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication) to manage pain and inflammation. Alternative medications like cortisone injections are advised with caution for any type of tendon condition. This is because there is increased risk of rupture of the tendons around the knee following a cortisone injection.
Effective Conservative Treatment Options
If your doctor's decided that your knee pain can be treated with conservative treatment, you can join our many customers who have had great success in treating themselves with the powerful, conservative treatment products we offer through AidYourTendon - the Freezie Wrap® and Inferno Wrap®.
If you need to have surgery, talk to your doctor about using these same products for post-surgery recovery. You'll find them effective for reducing post-surgery inflammation, enhancing range of motion and minimizing the growth of scar tissue in your knee.
No one is immune to tendonitis, you can easily reduce your risk of further injury with consistent conservative treatments
Step 1 - Reduce Pain & Swelling with Cold Compression
The 1st step for conservative treatment of your quadriceps tendonitis is to reduce the swelling to "open up" the area for more blood flow. Anyone in the health-care business knows that your blood supplies the oxygen and much needed nutrients required to heal knee injuries. This is why for years doctors, trainers and other medical professional have recommended RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) to treat the pain and swelling of fresh injuries, chronic pain, and after any re-injury.
Although RICE can help to treat these symptoms, ice and freezer gel packs reach temperatures so low they can cause cryoburn, an ice burn on your skin. The problem is, up until now there hasn't been any other option to treat painful conditions and injuries, so ice and blue gel packs (full of anti-freeze and chemicals) have been the only choice up until now.
Fortunately you no longer have to settle for these ice cold methods that are uncomfortably cold against your skin, provide short term relief, cause ice burns, numb your skin and underlying tissue beyond feeling so you don't even notice the ice burn until it's too late and pool around your injury putting the cold everywhere except for where you need it most.
A Freezie Wrap® allows you to treat your knee in an effective and convenient way. Our Freezie Wraps® will wrap around your knee keeping the cold right over your knee injury for the entire length of your treatment. Our food-grade, non-toxic gel packs can be chilled in the fridge or freezer to tailor the amount of cold that you need for your injury. It doesn't matter how you cool it down, because our gel packs are chock full of gel that's designed to cool down into millions of tiny snowflakes. The cushioned gel will wrap around your knee and it won't budge for the entire treatment period. You'll no longer have to deal with annoying pooling around your knee or have to hold a hard block of ice on your injury!
Cold Compression Therapy slows nerve and cell function - reducing the swelling that blocks blood vessels from doing their job.
This is important because once blood vessels are blocked or damaged, they can no longer carry oxygenated blood through the tissue and tissue cells begin to break-down. Without cold compression therapy cellular break-down and tissue damage continues as the cells don't get the oxygen they need to survive. By limiting the amount of damage done to your tendon, you also limit the amount of healing that needs to occur. This is a very important step to heal tendon injuries faster and with less pain! This is why you need to treat your knee pain right after it's hurt, when you notice pain / swelling / inflammation, or directly after a re-injury. Applying a Freezie Wrap® right away will stop the damage immediately and unblock your blood vessels to let your body's natural blood flow in to start healing the tissue.
Cold Compression Therapy = the Freezie Wrap®
It'll seem weird for you to read this, but there are a LOT of people out there that don't understand how fast cold compression with a Freezie Wrap® can get the swelling / inflammation around your knee under control! After you get rid of the swelling for good you can start dealing with your knee injury and pain head on.
Use a Cold Compression Freezie Wraps®:
- 24 to 72 hours after your initial injury or when you first notice pain and swelling in your knee to stop cellular damage, relieve pain, and decrease swelling.
- After exercise, workouts or activity of any kind to prevent re-injury of your knee.
- Before and after surgery during rehabilitation to control pre and post-surgery pain and swelling.
- Anytime you feel your knee is painful or you're having a flare-up of an old injury.
- Anytime you have swelling, sharp throbbing pain or inflammation in your knee.
- Any other situation where you need to draw the pain and inflammation out of your knee.
Step 2 - Improve Circulation, Soften Scar Tissue & Prevent Re-Injury with Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy™
After the inflammation in your knee has been reduced, providing extra blood flow and strengthening the tissue around your knee is recommended.
Using Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy™ (BFST®), will help with your recovery and heal your tendon more completely. BFST® increases the amount of blood that flows naturally to your soft tissue to nourish your tendons, improving elasticity and speeding the healing process. This increased Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy to your knee tendon(s) is greatly needed.
The only way to get BFST® is through use of an Inferno Wrap®. The Inferno Wrap® is the only treatment method that improves blood flow and circulation on a deep tissue level. Other methods of warming / heating tissue (hot water bottles, hot baths, etc) will only ever increase blood flow on a surface / skin level. These methods need a LOT of time to even reach your tendon on a deep tissue level. And even if you were to use them this long your skin would heat up to an uncomfortable level and may even burn you.
The best source of heat treatment is from a product where you don't even feel that much heat. When you don't feel the heat, it means the therapy is working in your deep soft tissue which is really where you need it. It's kind of like how your heart works in your body. You can't "feel" your heart pumping blood all around your body to your arms and legs. You can't even hear your own heartbeat without listening very closely. This is exactly how deep tissue BFST® works too! You're not supposed to "feel" a lot of heat because the heat isn't treating your skin, it's treating around your quadricep tendon increasing the blood flow right in your tendon tissue.
- When treating any soft tissue injury, an effective therapy will increase blood flow to the injury while the joint is immobile.
- This increase in blood flow will accelerate the body's own ability to heal itself.
- The Inferno Wrap® is the most highly effective blood flow stimulation device that you will find on the market that is approved by the FDA for use in the home or hospital.
Our Inferno Wrap® is made from medical-grade material - this should be as important to you as it is to us! Other products that are sold in stores are considered "consumer goods" meaning the material only needs to be as good as a sweater that you wear. Clothing articles like this don't need to meet high standards of production or materials and may include materials that irritate your skin.
Since our wraps are medical-grade products registered with the FDA, they are of a higher quality and need to meet way more standards for manufacturing (ISO 10993 - bio-compatibility testing). This makes our wraps the safest product for heating treatment. Our manufacturer has spent years perfecting the wrap design to make sure you get the treatment you deserve!
Use BFST® Inferno Wraps®:
- After swelling and inflammation have been reduced with cold compression.
- Before exercise or workouts to warm up your knee to prevent re-injury.
- Before and after surgery during rehabilitation to warm up your tissues before physical therapy exercising or stretching.
- Anytime you feel the tissue in your knee has stiffened up, is tight and your mobility is reduced causing you more pain.
- Anytime you have sore or aching tissue around your knee.
- Any other situation where you need to increase blood flow to your knee to relax your soft tissue, relieve pain, prevent re-injury and enhance flexibility of your tissue.
Continue the healing process by resting your knee. Limit the activities that may be aggravate your tendons. Without proper rest and limitation on activities, being active as if your knee is healthy can lead to re-injury. We spend hours on our knee through simple daily routine, recreational activities, exercise, or participating in athletics. To get back to doing the things you love you need to give your body proper care and attention. Why risk having to limit or give up your favorite weekend activity, your exercise routine, or even your job due to an injury?
Prevention and Promotion of Lifelong Health
If you want to avoid re-injury, or manage pain and increase circulation for lifelong health benefits, an Freezie Wrap® and Inferno Wrap®, will provide exceptional results. Why spend time in pain, off from work, and missing out on your active lifestyle when you can be proactive about your injury and the health of your body? Talk to your doctor about incorporating a regular routine of using a Freezie Wrap® and Blood Flow Stimulation Therapy™ into your everyday health regimen.
Call one of our AidYourTendon Advisers at no cost or obligation to address any lingering questions you have about using heat or cold for your knee injury - toll free 1.866.237.9608
Learn More About SUPERIOR Quadriceps Tendonitis Treatments
Learn more about how the Freezie Wrap® is designed to be the most effective cold compression wrap on the market today.
Learn more about how the Inferno Wrap® helps with the healing process.