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Old 02-11-10, 09:14 PM   #1
palisades
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Lingering Patella Tendon Injury - Any Suggestions?

Hi guys, I've been having this lingering issue with what I think is my patella tendon. It's on the upper part of my knee cap. When I first started cycling I had issues with patella tendinitis on hills, but as I got stronger the problem went away. Flash forward a few years, I'm consistently doing 50-60 miles a week. With 2 days out on the road a week, and 2 on a spinning bike at a gym. I tried a much harder ride than I usually do, and did about 60 miles with almost 4000 feet in ascent (Topanga Canyon in Malibu). Part of the climb was brutal at 10-13% grade for at least a half mile. The climb took a lot out of me, and I had to stop and rest a couple times, but nothing hurt more than usual.

The next day I woke up to my right knee throbbing BAD. I barely could walk for a few weeks, with bad pain right on the top half of my knee cap. I had to get a brace, and I stopped training for almost two months, until finally the pain started to subside. I tried to do a light workout on a spin bike, and it flared up immediately. So I didn't work out for another 2 months. Now the knee doesn't really hurt during normal activity, and I can do light work outs on the spin bike with no real issue as long as I stay out of the saddle. If I try to do any kind of significant resistance in the saddle, my knee hurts in the same place.

Has anyone had this happen to them? Anyone know of any exercises I can do to help the healing process? I spoke with my doctor, who is also a serious rider, and he said it doesn't sound like I tore anything, and that I just need to give it time to heal. But now it has been 6 months, and it still feels pretty weak.

This is incredibly frustrating as you can imagine, any help would be GREATLY appreciated.
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Old 02-11-10, 11:34 PM   #2
deep_sky
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Find another doctor, as 6 months is way too long for a non-traumatic injury to still be hurting. I would also advise that you make sure you get an MRI done ASAP of the knee to determine what is damaged in there. I too did a ride that was more strenuous than my knees could tolerate. I was in a great deal of pain for a week. I went to see a chiro who is also a member of my club, and she did a fit on me, and determined that my pedal needs to be further out as my knee was not over my foot as I pedaled. With that fixed with some spacers, and some exercises to work on strengthening my glutes (they are tight and weak, causing a ripple effect that meant I had knee and low back pain), and the knees are definitely progressing.

First find a doctor that knows what they are talking about. Serious rider or not, 6 months is WAY too long for knee pain and weakness to be so significant as to prevent you from doing any sort of cycling. A general practitioner is not going to know enough, and he should refer you to a specialist.
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Old 02-12-10, 06:02 AM   #3
enfilade
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Buy a bottle of Comfrey oil and just rub it into the injured area twice a day. Comfrey's thought to have healing qualities.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comfrey

I was skeptical at first, but I use it often now, and have noticed an improvement in my tendons. Whether that's because of the Comfrey oil I don't know, but a bottle doesn't cost much. If nothing else it'll improve blood flow to the area, speeding up healing.
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Old 02-14-10, 10:30 PM   #4
Daspydyr 
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I tend to lean with Deep Sky, get a sports medical professional and a Physical therapist. Something is torn somewhere or swollen and wont give up. I imagine you have tried tons of icing? Anti inflamatories as well. 6 months has lost you a lot of strength and endurance.
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Old 02-16-10, 09:18 PM   #5
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I had a similiar issue that turned out to be a tight IT band. A tight IT band can pull the kneecap out of alignment and cause incredible pain. It got to the point where I wasn't willing to walk. Go see a massage therapist or a physical therapist. A good massage therapist can loosen the lateral quads and even work on the facia around the patelar tendon. If it's a problem in the joint capsule, they'll refer you to a PT.
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