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Shockwave Therapy for Jumper’s Knee

“Jumper’s knee,” also called patellar tendinopathy, is an irritation and swelling of the knee triggered by micro tears in the patellar ligament that often occurs in sporting activities involving strenuous jumping. The micro tears are triggered by repeated trauma on the patellar or quadriceps tendon. This article reviews jumper’s knee.


Patellar tendinopathy is activity-related, caused by small micro-tears in the patellar tendon that primarily occur in sporting activities that require a lot of jumping. Patellar tendon injury can happen by excessive tension on the patellar or quadriceps ligament over time. Athletes that perform jumping sports where there is a fast-running speed and powerful force of the leg extensors are mostly affected. These activities commonly cause high quadriceps loadings such as beach volleyball, track (long and high jump), basketball, long-distance running and winter sports. The condition occurs more in males, sometimes in school aged youth and young adults. A jumper’s knee does not always involve inflammation of the knee extensor ligaments. Studies going back 40 years explain jumper’s knee is a degenerative condition. The diagnosis is made through a thorough history and physical examination. Ultrasound can be used to determine if there are tendon micro-tears or tendon swelling. Treatment is mostly conservative. Suggestions are mostly minimizing activities that put excessive stress on the knee. Other treatment options include physical therapy, shockwave therapy and regenerative injections.

Given that sports injuries usually are under-reported, it is hard to determine the precise incidence of patellar tendinopathy. Leaping sports such as volleyball, basketball, as well as high jumps, have a high occurrence of the disease. Research studies have revealed that patellar tendinopathy is greater in elite versus recreational athletes. Jumper’s knee occurs more often in males.

Multiple reasons have been suggested as cause of patellar tendinopathy; mechanical, vascular, and impingement. Nonetheless, the chronic overload theory is the most typically reported. Recurring overload on the knee extensor tendons can cause it to deteriorate progressively, eventually causing injury and micro tears. Tendon micro-trauma may create specific fibril degeneration. As the fibril deterioration becomes ongoing, persistent tendinopathy occurs.

The client with patellar tendinopathy experiences localized pain and inflammation at the base of the knee. Patellar tendinopathy reveals other typical signs and symptoms of other knee pathologies such as pain with extended resting, squatting, and stair climbing. Additionally, patients may experience distress from tasks that include long-term flexion of the knee.

Examination of the knee might reveal a local swelling overlying the patellar tendon, which is sensitive to the touch. An extensive examination of the complete leg is required to identify painful areas of the hip, knee, and ankle/foot region. Frequently malalignment of the foot, heel, or shin can place excess pressure on the knee extensor ligaments increasing the risk of tendinopathy.

Ultrasound is the preferred testing; It is non-invasive, repeatable, and accurate, and gives a dynamic image of the knee structures. Both ultrasound and MRI can reveal irregularities in the patellar tendon itself. Additionally, imaging can be used to identify the extent of the pathology.

An MRI is indicated in chronic situations and for medical planning. It can show thickening of the patellar ligament. In chronic cases, MRI scans may disclose the absence of the posterior boundary of the fat pad. It is typically the proximal part of the ligament, which is thickened.



How shockwave therapy treatment can help:

New blood vessels develop, improving blood supply and oxygenation of the treated area. Reversal of persistent inflammation happens as pole cell activity rises. Pole cells play an important function in injury recovery and protection versus virus. Accelerates the generation of collagen, which assists tendon fibers to be denser and stiffer, producing a stronger structure. Calcium build-up breaks down– granular portions of the buildup are eliminated by the body’s lymphatic system in areas where micro-tears and various other trauma to ligaments exist. Material P levels are decreased and discomfort is reduced when a natural chemical passes on pain messages to the central nerve system and inhibits the development of inflammatory edema.


Give us a call today and get on your path to recovery with Houston Shockwave Therapy located in The Woodlands, TX.


P: 281/357-5454