Anatomy of the Patellofemoral Joint

  • Christopher M. LaPrade
  • Matthew T. Rasmussen
  • Robert F. LaPradeEmail author


The patellofemoral joint is a very intricate and essential joint for the athlete, and the knowledge about the anatomy of the joint continues to progress. Numerous muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons, bursa sacs, arteries, and nerves contribute to the functionality of the joint and allow athletes to perform at the highest level by establishing knee stability and preventing pain. However, patellofemoral joint pathology continues to be a common problem associated with athletics, and knowledge about the anatomy is critical in order to diagnose and treat injuries as quickly as possible so that athletes can return to competition in the shortest possible time frame. This chapter focuses on the relevant surgical anatomy for the numerous structures in the patellofemoral joint by combining a summary of the relevant and available literature, along with numerous illustrations, to provide a synopsis of current knowledge about patellofemoral knee joint anatomy.


Patellar Tendon Biceps Femoris Patellofemoral Joint Quadriceps Tendon Medial Patellofemoral Ligament 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Rectus femoris


Vastus lateralis


Vastus lateralis obliquus


Vastus medialis


Vastus medialis obliquus


Lateral patellofemoral ligament


Medial patellofemoral ligament


Medial patellotibial ligament


Lateral patellotibial ligament


Iliotibial band


Iliopatellar band


Fibular collateral ligament


Anterior cruciate ligament


Posterior cruciate ligament


Medial collateral ligament


Quadriceps tendon


Patellar tendon


Adductor magnus tendon


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher M. LaPrade
    • 1
  • Matthew T. Rasmussen
    • 1
  • Robert F. LaPrade
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Biomedical EngineeringSteadman Philippon Research Institute, Vail Valley Medical CenterVailUSA
  2. 2.The Steadman Clinic, Steadman Philippon Research Institute, Vail Valley Medical CenterVailUSA
  3. 3.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA

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