New York, NY —July 21, 2016
Over the past decade, orthopedic surgeons at Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) have determined it is increasingly common for individuals with chronic knee issues to be misdiagnosed or offered few options for treatment and pain relief. Rather than being diagnosed with kneecap (patellar) arthritis or instability and treated appropriately, many patients are told by their physician that nothing can be done. The longer patellofemoral conditions persist, the greater the risk individuals have of re-injury and more severe damage. To address the growing need for patellofemoral disorder awareness and proactive treatment, HSS established its first Patellofemoral Center of Excellence effective July 1, 2016.
HSS orthopedic surgeons Beth E. Shubin Stein, MD, and Sabrina M. Strickland, MD, have dedicated their clinical practice to identifying and treating patients with patellofemoral disorders who either were previously misdiagnosed or not aware of the treatment options available to them. By establishing the new center, both physicians aim to improve patellofemoral disorder treatment through ongoing research and generating greater understanding of the difference between patellofemoral disorders and other knee conditions.
"An overwhelming number of individuals with ongoing knee issues are constantly re-injuring their knee and being misdiagnosed," said Dr. Strickland. "Early intervention of patellofemoral treatment is essential as continued dislocation can lead to further cartilage damage and/or arthritis."
Patellofemoral disorders are most commonly seen in women from 13 to 50 years old. "Women are more widely affected by the condition because their flexibility and alignment impact their joints differently than men," said Dr. Shubin Stein. "With this understanding, we are able to provide care tailored to the needs of each patient based on his or her type of patellofemoral condition and level of activity with the overarching goal of helping patients return to daily activity with a stable knee and without pain."
Patients experiencing patellofemoral arthritis and instability can be treated non-operatively with physical therapy and anti-inflammatory medication. If the pain persists or a patient experiences more than one dislocation, he or she may require surgery. In those cases there are many more surgical treatment options available now including ligament reconstruction or realignment to treat instability as well as cartilage graft options to restore cartilage that has been damaged and partial replacements in case of severe arthritis and cartilage damage.
To learn more about the HSS Patellofemoral Center of Excellence, visit www.hss.edu/patella.