Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I Got Beat Up at PT.

Good morning and Happy Valentine's Day!

A few weeks ago I posted about my hip issues and yes, they are still around.  Recently I was diagnosed with Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS)…just like I thought it was initially, and for this, I go to a physical therapist once or twice a week to get “beat up.”  Last night I had my weekly date with the therapists (either Ian or Danielle) and let me tell you...PT is hard work!  Phew!

What is ITBS?

ITBS is a common injury to the thigh, generally associated with activities such as running and cycling.  It is often called “runner’s knee” and it is one of the leading causes of knee or hip pain in runners.

The IT band runs from the outside of the pelvis, over the hip and knee, and inserts just below the knee.  It plays a critical part in stabilizing the knee during running.  The continual rubbing of the band over the lateral femoral epicondyle, combined with the repeated flexion and extension of the knee during running may cause the area to become inflamed. 

ITBS symptoms range from a stinging sensation just above the knee joint  (on the outside of the knee or along the entire length of the IT band) to swelling or thickening of the tissue at the point where the band moves over the femur. The pain may not occur immediately during activity, but may intensify over time, especially as the foot strikes the floor.

What do I do at these sessions?  First, I get stretched out like a pretzel for the first half hour.  In addition, they will have me lay on my side and will literally take a wooden baseball bat and roll it up and down the side of my leg right over the IT band while applying pressure.  OMG…I see stars.   This is so painful!  It’s my least favorite part of the whole session, but I know it will help in the long run.

While they say that rest and stretching are the best remedies for ITBS, I may not exactly be listening to the doctor's orders.  I continue to do my stretches, post-run icing, and PT, but I can’t stop myself from running.  I know…shame, shame. 

Anyway, since ITBS is a very common running injury, I thought I would share my experiences.  I know this wasn't the most exciting post, but I hope it was informative.   

I found this sign and I thought I would include it...it's exactly where I like to be! 

Have you ever had IT band issues, whether it be on the outside of the knee or up in the hip area?   
Have a great Tuesday!


1 comment:

  1. I have not personally had any IT band issues, but a number of people that I know have, especially females. From how my friends have described it, it's nagging and is very hard to get rid of. Foam rollers and "the stick" seem to be two alternatives to a baseball bat to alleviate some of the pain.