Kneecap Injuries-Patella

Acute patella dislocation originates when the patella’s relationship with the femur is lost and the kneecap dislodges from its place. It is an injury that can be spontaneous or the product of some trauma. When it occurs, the patella slides out of place and returns to its position when the patient stretches the knee (usually instinctively).



At the time of the acute patellar dislocation, the person feels great pain, perceives that the patella has left its place and falls to the ground when losing stability. Of several knee injuries, this must be one of the most painful. All medial patella stabilizers must have been broken for the patella to have slipped out of place. In other words, the medial patellofemoral ligament, the ligaments that go from the patella to the tibia, breaks and along with this, the joint capsule breaks.



It is necessary to differentiate when it is a single dislocation or it is repetitive in time. In addition to consulting how the injury occurred, it is necessary to perform some tests, such as radiography and magnetic resonance imaging. In acute injuries, if the patient does not have a large effusion, has not bled much, and from a radiological point of view, a healthy patella is seen, an MRI will not be required. Now, if the knee has had a lot of bleeding, the examination is necessary.



The treatment for an acute patellar dislocation will be surgical or orthopaedic, depending on the patient’s conditions. In the first case exposed, the treatment is conservative (medical attention). If the patient has some special conditions, such as having a significant fracture associated with a dislocation, surgical intervention is necessary.


The surgical procedure

Basically what is done is to stabilize the patella, through the reconstruction of the patellofemoral ligament, which is the one that performs about 70% of the force that prevents patellar dislocation. Depending on the level of damage to the ligament, it is decided to repair or rebuild.


How to prevent acute patellar dislocation?

It is difficult to prevent acute patellar dislocation, but be careful with sports where very rapid changes of direction and sudden movements occur with the foot fixed on the floor. You even have to be careful with some types of dance.
There are also external elements that help prevent this type of injury, such as knee pads and taping, which give greater firmness and stability to the knee.


Estimated rehabilitation time

The estimated time will depend on the associated damages that have existed due to the dislocation of the patella. To resume the activities of daily life, it is estimated at 8 weeks.


You might also want to read: Meniscal tears


At Harley Street Hospital, we have some of the best specialists to diagnose and treat kneecap injuries. Book an appointment to get a checkup.

Doctors Specialising in Hip and Knee Surgery
Gorav trained in London and specialist fellowships were undertaken at ...

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