"Runners Information Online"
This is the most common running-related injury. Known as patello-femoral pain, and sometimes diagnosed as chondromalacia of the patella, runner’s knee is essentially irritation of the cartilage of the kneecap.
The condition of runner's knee results in pitting or fissuring of the cartilage to varying degrees.
Chrondromalacia causes knee tenderness, knee pain in front of the knee, and a grating sensation in the knee. The knee pain is worst after sitting for a prolonged period of time or when getting out of a chair. The knee cartilage is affected probably from overuse, trauma and/or abnormal forces on the knee, such as a misaligned patella.
Chondromalacia is treated with rest or immobilization and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for pain. Physical therapy, especially quadriceps strengthening and hamstring stretching may also be helpful. Surgery is beneficial if there is a problem with the alignment of the patella that cannot be corrected with therapy.
While running, various mechanical conditions may predispose runners to a poorly tracking kneecap. This can result in irritation and/or damage to the kneecap.
Runners will notice pain near the kneecap, especially after sitting for extended periods of time with knees bent or while walking down stairs or downhill.
Appropriate treatment involves eliminating or modifying activities that cause the pain; correcting improper bio mechanics that allow the injury to arise; and avoiding positions that further irritate the condition, such as sitting for prolonged periods of time.