What are some rehabilitation techniques for a fractured patella?


Quick Answer

A patient with a fractured patella can begin to perform hamstring stretches right away, according to the Summit Medical Group. Once the pain has subsided, the patient can begin to perform quadriceps stretches and other exercises to strengthen the thigh muscles, such as side-lying leg lifts, quad sets, straight leg raises, step ups and wall squats using a ball.

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Full Answer

As the pain continues to decrease, the patient can begin exercises such as resisted knee terminal extensions, calf stretches, clam exercises, iliotibial band stretching and patella self-mobilization, recommends the Summit Medical Group. The patient should avoid exercises that cause sharp pain.

Approximately four to six weeks after initial treatment, rehabilitation can begin, advises the Insall Scott Kelly Institute for Orthopaedics and Sports Medicines. Initially rehab focuses on strengthening the muscles around the knee and increasing knee range of motion. Range of motion is extremely important to keep the knee flexible. These exercises may be painful but are necessary to prevent knee stiffening. The next step in rehab is exercises with weights to provide resistance.

As the kneecap heals and the leg regains strength, the patient can participate in normal activities once again, says the ISK Institute. This should include stair climbing, swimming, single-leg support and driving.

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