What is the patellofemoral joint?

The knee joint has three parts. The femur (thigh bone) meets the tibia (larger of the two shin bones) forming the main knee joint, called the tibiofemoral joint. This main joint has a medial (inner) and lateral (outer) compartment. The patella (kneecap) and the femur meet at the front of the knee to form the second joint called the patellofemoral joint.

Patellofemoral Joint | Vail CO

What kind of joint in the patellofemoral joint?

The knee is a modified hinge joint which is a synovial joint. These are the types of joints found between bones that move against each other. The shoulder, hip and elbow are other examples of a synovial joint. A modified hinge joint allows for more than just an up and down or forward and backward motion – it allows for rotation as well. The patellofemoral joint offers both rotation and hinge capabilities.

Why is the patellofemoral joint important?

The patellofemoral joint is located on the top of the knee and is important because it provides the strength for the extension of the knee by providing leverage. This joint is susceptible to the largest loads in the body and is susceptible to injury. Dr. Armando Vidal, orthopedic knee specialist is an expert in diagnosing and treating patellar injuries for patients in Vail, Aspen and the surrounding Denver Colorado communities.

How do you use the patellofemoral joint?

The patellofemoral joint was designed to perform. It is used in everyday activities and undergoes wear and tear from constant use. Some of the daily motions that use the patellofemoral joint are:

  • Walking
  • Going uphill or downhill
  • Using the stairs
  • Kneeling or squatting
  • Getting up from a seated position
  • Sports activities
  • Running

Complex Knee Specialist

The patellofemoral joint includes the bones, ligaments, and other components that make up the knee joint. This joint is critical for allowing motion such as walking, climbing stairs, squatting, and performing other physical activities. The patellofemoral joint can become injured in a number of ways. Complex knee specialist, Doctor Armando Vidal has much experience examining and diagnosing various knee injuries for patients in Vail, Aspen, and the surrounding Denver, Colorado communities. If you believe you have experienced a knee injury, contact Dr. Vidal’s team today!


The Steadman Clinic – Vail, CO
180 S Frontage Rd W
Vail, CO 81657

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Vail, CO 81657

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