If the outside of your knee is painful, there’s a good chance you have Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS). ITBS is a common cause of lateral knee pain, and although it’s commonly known as ‘runners knee’, it isn’t limited to runners.
The iliotibial band (ITB) is on the outside of the thigh and is inserted into the bone just below the knee. Friction between the ITB and underlying knee bone during exercise results in inflammation and pain. Aggravating factors include changes in training schedule (increased mileage, hills, or speed), the underlying biomechanics of the leg joints, and sometimes a change in footwear.
Signs of ITBS include:
- Pain on the outer side of the knee during activity which usually settles with rest
- Pain aggravated with prolonged exercise
- Pain aggravated with descending stairs or hills
- Gradual onset associated with repetitive movement/exercise
- Reduce or avoid aggravating activities
- Reduce inflammation and swelling with acupuncture
- Commence graded exercise at a pace consistent with the recovery process
Acupuncture and ITBS
In conjunction with graded activities and exercise, acupuncture is a very effective mode of therapy for ITBS. Acupuncture has a powerful effect in promoting healing of damaged tissue and releases adhesions formed from prolonged inflammation as it accesses deep layers of muscle and fascia.
Acupuncture is based on the meridian system: a set of lines throughout the body that interconnect all of the body’s functions, including muscular skeletal and organ function. In addition to using acupuncture at the injury site and its related structures, other acupuncture points along the meridian are used.
Relief of symptoms occurs quickly with acupuncture, and reduction in both pain and swelling is evident in most people after one or two sessions.
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