Patellar Tendon Rupture

Patellar tendon rupture is a rupture of the tendon that connects the patella to the tibia. The patellar tendon attaches to the tibial tubercle on the front of the tibia just below the front of the knee, and is connected to the bottom of the patella, above which are attached to the quadriceps tendon, followed by the quadriceps muscle, large muscles on the front of the thigh. This structure allows the knee to flex and extend, allowing use of basic functions such as walking and running.

When rupture occurs, the patella loses support from the tibia and moves toward the hip when the quadriceps muscle contract, hindering the leg’s ability to extend. This means that those affected cannot stand, as their knee buckles and gives way when they attempt to. (From Wikipedia)

Images from AnatomyBox         Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

These are radiographs from a 10 year old boy who ruptured his patella tendon while playing football.  The radiograph on top (lateral view) shows bony fragments that are consistent with an avulsion fracture  off inferior patella.

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