Patellofemoral / Patellotibial Ligaments

  • In this episode: We are discussing the patellofemoral and patellotibial ligaments, specifically the medial patellofemoral ligament. These ligaments functions together to hold the patella (knee cap) in place. They are often damaged when the patella is dislocated or with a sudden twisting of the knee.

  • Chip Review @ (18:24): Snyder of Berlin – Bar B Q (Thank you Lisa Neiley)

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Brief overview of the episode:

            The patellotibial and patellofemoral ligaments are not discussed often. They are however, hugely important in maintaining patellar position. Someone who has dislocated their patella is almost certain to have torn one of these ligaments.

            Typically the medial patellofemoral ligament (MPFL) is the one damaged most often. This has to do with many knee injuries resulting from uncontrolled or poorly control knee valgus (knocked knee position). The data suggests that 96% of all lateral patella dislocation will result in at least a partial tear of the MPFL.

            50-60% of patellar lateral restraining force comes from the MPFL and this is why someone who dislocated his or her patella once is at an increased likelihood of dislocating again. The MPFL is most effective between 0-30deg of knee flexion. Beyond this point bony structures and the MCL, LCL, ACL or PCL are more effective.

            Over the last few years surgical MPFL reconstructions have started to become more common and this trend is likely to continue as the importance of this structure is better understood, assessed for and treated.

 All data and statistics taken from:

Collin Krebs, Meaghan TranovichKyle Andrews, and Nabil Ebraheim. “The medial patellofemoral ligament: Review of the literature” J Orthop. 2018 Jun; 15(2): 596–599.

Other episodes you might enjoy:  

Patella Femoral Pain Syndrome: Episode 32

Shin Splint: Episode 17

Ice or Heat?: Episode 23

ACL Recovery: Episode 13


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