Jumper's knee is a common problem among athletes. It involves inflamed tendons attaching to the patella, or kneecap. The pain is usually felt in the patellar tendon where it connects at the bottom of the kneecap. Jumper's knee most often occurs in athletic young adults. It forces many young athletes to give up their sports. But what happens then? Do their knees ever fully recover?
This study tracked down athletes with jumper's knee 15 years after their injuries. They were compared to athletes who had never had knee problems. More than 50 percent of the athletes with jumper's knee had quit their sports because of their knee problems, compared to only seven percent of the other athletes. And the athletes with jumper's knee still had significantly more knee pain during activities such as climbing stairs and jumping.
On the positive side, the injured athletes reported the same ability to work and exercise as the uninjured group. The symptoms of jumper's knee may be long-lasting, but they tend to be mild.
Jyrki A. Kettunen, PhD, et al. Long-Term Prognosis for Jumper's Knee in Male Athletes: A Prospective Follow-up Study. In The American Journal of Sports Medicine. September/October 2002. Vol. 30. No. 5. Pp. 689-692.'