Two articles on PainSci cite Herrington 2004: 1. The Complete Guide to Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome 2. Patellofemoral Tracking Syndrome
PainSci notes on Herrington 2004:
In 2004, this Manchester research group showed that abnormal patellar position tends to throw off Q-angle measurements. Specifically, if a Q-angle measurement is taken based on a patella that is displaced laterally, the result will not be as large as the real Q-angle.
original abstract †Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.
BACKGROUND: For an accurate quadriceps angle measurement, the patella must be centralised in the femoral trochlear groove, numerous authors have described lateral displacement of the patella in patellofemoral pain patients, this leads to the intriguing possibility that the Q-angle might be undervalued within patellofemoral pain patients who have laterally displaced patella.
METHOD: 109 asymptomatic subjects (51 male, 58 female) were assessed. Medio-lateral patella position was measured using a previous validated method and Q-angle was measured in standing with the quadriceps relaxed. FINDINGS: Mean Q-angle was 11.6 degrees (SD 5.2) left knee, 11.3 degrees (SD 4.9) right knee in the male subjects and 14.4 degrees (SD 5.2) left knee, 13.3 degrees (SD 5.5) right knee for female subjects. 40 females and 28 males had laterally displaced patellae. 13 subjects had centrally placed patellae (7 females, 6 males) with 28 subjects having medially displaced patellae (11 females, 17 males). Recalculation of Q-angle for the laterally displaced group brought about a statistically significant increase in angle. In the medial displaced group failed to produce a statistically significant decrease.
INTERPRETATION: The adjusted Q-angle values for medially and neutral placed patellae brought the values very much into the centre of the reported ranges for Q-angles. After adjustment for lateral patella displacement, Q-angle values were towards the under end of values reported as normal, especially female values which were close to the previously reported pathological cut off point. Because of the inverse relationship between quadriceps strength and the magnitude of Q-angle and quadriceps crucial role in the aetiology of patellofemoral pain, any method which improves the reliability and applicability of Q-angle measurement could prove useful in investigations into the aetiology of and outcome from treatment of patellofemoral pain syndrome.
This page is part of the PainScience BIBLIOGRAPHY, which contains plain language summaries of thousands of scientific papers & others sources. It’s like a highly specialized blog. A few highlights:
- No long-term effects after a three-week open-label placebo treatment for chronic low back pain: a three-year follow-up of a randomized controlled trial. Kleine-Borgmann 2022 Pain.
- Exercise and education versus saline injections for knee osteoarthritis: a randomised controlled equivalence trial. Bandak 2022 Ann Rheum Dis.
- Association of Lumbar MRI Findings with Current and Future Back Pain in a Population-based Cohort Study. Kasch 2022 Spine (Phila Pa 1976).
- A double-blinded randomised controlled study of the value of sequential intravenous and oral magnesium therapy in patients with chronic low back pain with a neuropathic component. Yousef 2013 Anaesthesia.
- Is Neck Posture Subgroup in Late Adolescence a Risk Factor for Persistent Neck Pain in Young Adults? A Prospective Study. Richards 2021 Phys Ther.