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The patellar tendon is a thick tendon that extends from the bottom of the kneecap (patella) to the upper shinbone (tibial tuberosity). It allows for the transmission of forces from the quadriceps muscle to the shinbone and is therefore important for the extension of the knee joint.

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A rupture (tear) or tendinosis (degeneration) of the patellar tendon can lead to pain and impairment of knee joint function.

Causes of a patellar tendon rupture can be diverse. It often occurs as a result of overuse and repeated microtraumas, such as in sports involving quick stops and direction changes like basketball or volleyball. A direct blow to the patellar tendon can also cause a rupture. Tendinosis of the patellar tendon can also arise from overuse or chronic irritation.


For the diagnosis of patellar tendon injuries, a physical examination and imaging techniques such as ultrasound or MRI are typically performed.


Treatment depends on the severity of the injury. Mild tendinosis can often be managed conservatively with physiotherapeutic exercises or minimally invasive procedures to refresh the tendon and remove degenerative portions.

In more severe cases, particularly with a rupture of the patellar tendon, surgery may be necessary. In this case, the tendon is either sutured or reconstructed to facilitate complete healing.

Resting the affected limb and targeted physiotherapy can aid in accelerating healing and restoring knee joint function.

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