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Athletic Training

Hard Painful Lump on Knee Cap



I excercise reg. and have developed a hard dime size "bump" on my right knee cap, it hurts incredible when I load it with weight and its hard for me to get up out of a sitting position or walk up stairs, its fine when I walk though


Your patella (knee cap) is susceptible to trauma in a variety of ways. Traditionally it will occur due to direct trauma and or due to overuse.


The superior (top) portion of your patella is met by your quad tendon and the inferior (bottom) portion is the attachment of your patella tendon which inserts further below on your tibia (tibial tuberosity). Through training your tendons are stressed and in some cases micro tears occur, resulting in tendonitis.


Another possibility is that the tendon is aggravated where it inserts on the patella. A potential option for the hard painful lump could be scar tissue that has accumulated over time.

Your best course of action would be to follow-up with a physician in which case he/she may do the following: order an x-ray, prescribe therapeutic exercise, and or have you modify your activity. Good luck to you.

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Response by:

Alex K Wong, MS, ATC Alex K Wong, MS, ATC
Assistant Athletic Lecturer & Trainer
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University