Anterior knee tendon problems are seldom reported in badminton players although the game is obviously stressful to the lower extremities.
Painful anterior knee tendons are common among elite badminton players. The anterior knee tendons exhibit colour Doppler activity. This activity increases after match. Painful tendons have more Doppler activity than tendons without pain.
Seventy-two elite badminton players were interviewed about training, pain and injuries. The subjects were scanned with high-end ultrasound equipment. Colour Doppler was used to examine tendons of 64 players before match and 46 after match. Intratendinous colour Doppler flow was measured as colour fraction. The tendon complex was divided into three loci; the quadriceps tendon, the proximal patellar tendon and the insertion on the tibial tuberosity.
Interview: Of the 72 players, 62 players had complaints from 86 tendons in the lower extremity. Of these 86 tendons, 48 were the anterior knee tendons. Ultrasound: At baseline, the majority of players (87%), had colour Doppler flow in at least one scanning position. After match the percentage of the knee complexes involved, did not change. Colour fraction increased significantly in the dominant leg at the tibial tuberosity, single players had a significantly higher colour fraction after match at the tibial tuberosity and in the patellar tendon both before and after match. Painful tendons had highest colour Doppler activity.
Most elite badminton players suffered from pain in the anterior knee tendons and most had intratendinous Doppler activity both before and after match. High levels of Doppler activity were associated with self-reported ongoing pain.
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