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Quadriceps tendon is a thick tissue located at the top of the kneecap. The quadriceps tendon works together with the quadriceps muscles to allow straightening the leg. The quadriceps muscles are the muscles located in front of the thigh.

Quadriceps tendon rupture most commonly occurs in middle-aged people who participate in sports which involve jumping and running.


Quadriceps tears are caused by falls, direct blows to the leg and landing awkwardly from a jump. Other causes include tendonitis (inflammation of quadriceps tendon), diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes mellitus, infection, and chronic renal failure which weakens the quadriceps tendon. Use of medications such as steroids and some antibiotics may also weakens the quadriceps tendon.

The patient may be unable to straighten the knee. Upon standing the knee may buckle upon itself.

To identify a quadriceps tendon, tear the doctor will take a medical history and perform a physical examination of your knee. An X-ray of the knee is taken to know the position of the kneecap. An MRI scan may be ordered to confirm the diagnosis and the extent and location of the tear.


Quadriceps tendon tear can be treated by non-surgical and/or surgical methods. Non-surgical treatment involves use of knee braces to immobilize the knee. Crutches may be needed to prevent the joint from bearing weight. Physical therapy may be ordered to restore the strength and increase range of motion of the knee.

Surgery is performed on an outpatient basis.The goal of the surgery is to re-attach the torn tendon to knee cap and to restore the normal function of the knee.

Following surgery, a brace may be needed to protect the healing tendon. Complete healing of the tendon may take about 4 months.

  • Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics

    Athletic Orthopedics
    & Knee Center
    9180 Katy Freeway
    Suite 200
    Houston, TX 77055





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    Friday: 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM
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