It always amazes me how a type of injury or condition can become synonyms with certain types of activities or people. My concern is by simplifying the name of the injury , are we simplifying the injury itself.
For instance Policeman’s Heel, Athletes’ Foot, Golfers Elbow, Tennis Elbow or Housewives/ Housemaids Knee, (this affects roofers more than any one else), Builders Back and of course Runners Knee, really are these things a diagnosis ?
The answer is No they are not, in some case’s it is what we would call an coverall for a few problems, used because the exact problem has not been fully diagnosed for what ever reason.
With muscular injuries this can be the case, because of transferred pain or more than one group of muscles being affected, it should not however take away the serious of the injury, or the treatment needed just because it has a simple name.
This is what Wikipedia has to say about it
While the term Chondromalacia sometimes refers to abnormal-appearing cartilage anywhere in the body,it most commonly denotes irritation of the underside of the kneecap (or “patella”). The patella’s posterior surface is covered with a layer of smooth cartilage, which the base of the femur normally glides effortlessly against when the knee is bent. However, in some individuals the kneecap tends to rub against one side of the knee joint, irritating the cartilage and causing knee pain.
The condition may result from acute injury to the patella or chronic friction between the patella and a groove in the femur through which it passes during knee flexion. Possible causes include a tight iliotibial band, Neuromas, bursitis, overuse, malalignment, core instability, and patellar maltracking.
Pain at the front or inner side of the knee is common in both young adults and those of more advanced years, especially when engaging in football gymnastics cycling rowing tennis ballet basketball, horseback riding, volleyball, running, figure skating, snowboarding, skateboarding, and even swimming. The pain is typically felt after prolonged sitting.” Skateboarders most commonly experience this injury in their non-dominant foot due to the constant kicking and twisting required of it. Swimmers acquire it doing the breaststroke, which demands an unusual motion of the kne
See what I mean it is not so simple and it is not restricted to Runners,
One thing that is apparent, there is pain and you need to rest it and get treatment, or it will not get better, just categorising the problem as Runners Knee, will by itself not sort out the problem, you still need to put a treatment package in place with your Doctor so ask the question ” What sort of Runners Knee is it”. Don’t just assume, and don’t let your Doctor just assume you know what it is, you need to have answers you need the right treatment, mainly because you don’t want to make it worse, you may need to wear a knee brace, or you may be on your way to a meniscus problem and surgery.
You need an idea of recovery time, don’t forget, when a professional athlete has an injury they have down time to recover, you may not have that time period, you have to work, what you do in work may irritate the injury. All these factors have to be taken in to consideration. Something that some one with knee problems needs to be aware of they are nearly always degenerative, don’t assume it will go away it may settle down for a time, but things can trigger it off again and you can be your own worse enemy.