A bipartite patella is not a knee injury, per se. It’s an abnormality in how the kneecap forms as a child. There is a growth center at the top and outside of the patella in children that almost always fuses with age. In a small percentage of the population, this growth center doesn’t fuse.
In most cases, a patient with a bipartite patella has no pain or other symptoms. They don’t even realize they have it until they get x-rays for some reason. Often the x-rays resemble a patella fracture, although the patient will not have any history of a traumatic event with a bipartite patella.
A patient with this condition does not need to do anything about it. If there is some discomfort from the kneecap for any reason, a short course of physical therapy can resolve it. Rest and anti-inflammatory medications can help as well. Surgery is almost never needed.
An xray plays an important role in the evaluation of knee pain
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