Iliotibial Band Syndrome: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Iliotibial Band Syndrome is an injury caused due to overuse of the knee or thigh muscles. The Iliotibial band is a bunch of fibers which begin near the pelvis and joins the tibia after running along the outer side of the thighs. This band is also linked to the muscles of the buttock as well as hip joint and plays a major role in facilitating the movement of the knee. Inflammation of the Iliotibial band causes pain in the knee which may worsen if not treated immediately. The injury is commonly experienced by runners, tennis players, weight lifters and cyclists. Generally, a patient is able to restore normal range of motion using conservative methods of treatment.

Causes

  • Excessive running
  • Improper stretching before and after a running session
  • Muscle imbalance
  • Abnormality in limb length
  • Supination or outward rolling of the foot during physical activity
  • Presence of bowlegs (genu varum)
  • Weak hip muscles
  • Sitting cross legged or squatting for too long
  • Abnormal tilting of the pelvic bones

Symptoms

  • Pain in the knee which may radiate towards the thighs and hip joint
  • Pain is felt when the foot touches the ground
  • Difficulty in climbing stairs
  • Swelling or tenderness may be observed
  • Tenderness and stinging sensation
  • Popping sound in the knee

Diagnosis

  • Detailed analysis of the symptoms reported by the patient as well as his/her medical history
  • Physical examination to check limb length discrepancy, muscle weakness or tightening or swelling and tenderness in any part of the lower body
  • Checking the functioning of the hips, lower back, legs and thighs
  • Analysis of the patient’s gait and range of motion
  • MRI scan may be required to assess the severity of inflammation in the Iliotibial band

Treatment

  • Rest
  • Cryotherapy – application of ice packs at regular intervals to reduce pain
  • Prescription of anti-inflammatory drugs by the doctor
  • Physical therapy and specific stretching exercises may help to strengthen the supporting muscles and retain normal range of motion
  • Electrotherapy may be used to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Keeping the affected leg elevated
  • Wearing specific shoe inserts or shoes
  • Surgical lengthening of the Iliotibial band to prevent stretching

We, at OrthoTexas, provide complete treatment for Iliotibial Band Syndrome. To schedule an appointment with the orthopedic surgeons in Flower Mound, TX, you can call at (972) 899 – 4679.

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