Quadriceps tendinopathy

Quadriceps tendinopathy is due to overuse which results to pain and tenderness of the quadriceps tendon. After some time, this can lead to the deterioration of the tendon.

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Tendinopathy can come in various forms including tendonitis and tenosynovitis. It is important to note that the quadriceps muscles insert at the upper part of the patella. As an overuse injury, the pain tends to develop in a gradual manner. The pain in this area is common among older individuals and weightlifters. One reason is excess strain on the muscle insertion when performing deep squats.

Quadriceps tendinopathy
Knee pain at the upper part during and after activity.

Indications

  • Knee pain at the upper part during and after activity
  • Pain when contracting the quadriceps muscles or when pressing the upper part of the joint where the muscle links to the patella
  • Stiffness that arises the day after training
  • Pain or discomfort when in a crouched position

Management

Cold therapy is used if the pain is acute. An pack should be applied 10-15 minutes every hour during the initial 24-48 hours. Once the acute inflammation has settled, heat can be applied along with a heat retainer.

Stretching of the quadriceps muscles is vital and must be done on a regular basis throughout the day. Working with a sports injury professional is essential so that a suitable rehabilitation program can be started.

The doctor might prescribe anti-inflammatory medications during the early acute phases. On the other hand, if the injury is a chronic issue, these medications are no longer beneficial and might even delay recovery.

Sports massage specifically the cross-friction techniques are effective in managing chronic cases of quadriceps tendinopathy. In enduring cases, a corticosteroid injection might be given by the doctor. The recovery from the condition might take weeks or even months.

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