Patellar instability is a broad term that encompasses patellar dislocation, patellar subluxation, and patellar instability. Although both functional and anatomic considerations contribute to symptoms of patellar instability, the most important are thought to be patella alta, trochlear dysplasia, and lateralization of the tibial tubercle. In patients with a history suspicious for prior patellar dislocation, careful evaluation of MRI and radiographic studies can reveal characteristic findings. The most common methods to address patellofemoral instability are medial patellofemoral ligament reconstruction and tibial tubercle osteotomy with either anteromedialization or medialization. Less commonly trochleoplasty is indicated as well. Patients may be treated with one of or a combination of these techniques, each of which has specific indications and complications.
Clin Sports Med (Clinics in sports medicine)
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