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I have been running for about 2 years - generally about 3 times a week although I ran the Paris marathon this year and FLM last year and was running 4 times a week when training for those.
Throughout this I have had a chronic (and annoying) pain in my right knee. I can pinpoint exactly when it started, which was about 3 weeks after I started running after a fast run down a relatively steep downhill stretch near my house.
Didn't feel any pain whilst running, but that day at work my right knee started to ache. Eased off the running for a week or two and it subsided slightly down to a level which it has been at pretty much ever since - although it varies from better to worse.
It doesn't hurt when I run (although it sometimes feels a little tight at the end of a long run (15 miles or more) and it doesn't hurt when I walk or stand.
It mainly hurts when I am driving or to a lesser extent sitting at my desk etc. with my leg bent. Feels like a dull burning / aching behind the kneecap but more on the inside of the knee rather than the outside (by which I mean the left side of my right knee).
It feels very slightly "clicky" behind the kneecap if I flex my quads in this position, but not audible clicking- just as if there is a tiny bit of slack somewhere.
It doesnt (or hasn't yet - touch wood) lock up, grind or feel stiff although sometimes feels a bit creaky if I touch the knee cap. There isn't any visible swelling and there wasn't even when I first did it.
Bizarelly it never seems to be that bad after running (even after marathons) but always seems to get worse if I haven't run for a few days or I ease back on my mileage - which is why it is annoying me at the moment. I think it is probably worse after sprinting / speedwork than after slower, longer distances as well.
I have seen a couple of physio's - first one said that it was patellar tendonopathy. I have got one of the straps which goes under your knee which I wear when running - but it doesn't seem to have made much difference.
The second one suggested that it wasn't that, but was probably due to bad tracking of the knee - possibly due to an old injury / weak spot in my right quad. Probably have more faith in that diagnosis as I never mentioned the injury (as it was from years ago) so she must have spotted that from the examination. Have tried various leg exercises (squats, straight leg lifts etc.) to try and help this, but if anything they make it worse.
My friend who is an orthopaedic surgeon reckons that it is some kind of meniscal tear - although I'm not convinced by this either as the symptoms don't seem to be that severe.
It isn't bad enough to stop me from running (and stopping running doesn't seem to help anyway) but it is starting to really annoy me.
Not necessarily expecting a diagnosis via this forum, but what I want to figure out is who I need to consult. I am reluctant to add a "fourth opinion" to all of the above and I really want to get a definitive answer as to what it is and how I need to resolve it now.
If anyone has any thoughts they would be most appreciated - or any recommendations for a good sports injury specialist in the Wirral / Merseyside area who I could consult.
cheers - and aplogies for the lenght of this tedious post