Understanding Kneecap Dislocations In Young Girl Basketball Players

Kneecap or patellar dislocations are a problem that often affects girl basketball players around the world. Why is this injury so common in these athletes? And can it be successfully repaired if your daughter suffers from one?

Girls Are More Prone To This Problem

While dislocation in the knee can happen to any student athletes, girl athletes are more prone to this problem. There are a variety of reasons that a patellar dislocation may occur. One of the most common is loose ligaments in joints. Unfortunately, this problem more often occurs in girls than boys, though boys may suffer from knee dislocations in high-impact sports.

While looser ligaments may help provide a girl athlete with a little extra flexibility, it also makes her kneecap prone to looser movement. These movements can cause the kneecap to "lag" behind the rest of the leg when she jumps and shoots during basketball games, making dislocation more likely.

How Basketball Can Contribute

While patellar dislocations aren't the most common knee injuries associated with basketball, they are still in the top four. It typically occurs when the female athlete changes direction rapidly and the kneecap is put under excessive stress. Just think of your daughter snagging a rebound under her opponents' basket and pivoting for a fast break.

Those quick changes in direction and speed are hard on the knee, and it may cause them to pop out of place. When this happens, you'll know immediately: your daughter will scream in pain and fall to the floor. Unfortunately, this kind of injury can recur in athletes year-after-year, making correct treatment absolutely essential.

Surgery Is Typically Necessary

First-time dislocations are generally treated non-surgically by realigning the patella; however, if your daughter suffers from recurring kneecap dislocations during basketball games, assessment and surgery are necessary. Surgery often requires grafting new tendons to the kneecap in order to stabilize it and make it stronger. In other instances, a transfer of tubercle material may be necessary, as well as the use of knee screws and other stabilizing procedures.

Your daughter will likely miss much, if not all, of her basketball season. This is unfortunate, but failure to properly rest her knee while it heals can result in more damage. In fact, it could result in an injury severe enough to prevent her from playing basketball ever again.

While it is often emotionally painful to put your daughter through this kind of surgery, it is necessary to protect her knee health. It can not only protect her from further recurrences of kneecap dislocation, but also give her the athletic strength she needs to be a great basketball player. For more information, contact a clinic like Omaha Orthopedic Clinic & Sports Medicine PC.

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