Knee joint and related structures

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  • Sesamoid bone in the quadriceps tendon
  • Articulates with femur by two surfaces separated by a crest.
  • Lateral surface larger than medial
  • Due to the oblique pull of quadriceps, it tends to be drawn laterally.


Stability of patella:
  • Horizontally oriented fibres of the vastus medialis
  • Tension of the medial patellar retinaculum
  • Forward prominence of lateral femoral condyle.
  • Ligamentum patellae
Functions of the patella:
  • Stabilize and protect the knee joint anteriorly

  • Align the pull of quadriceps into a straight extensor pull
  • Increase mechanical advantage of the quadriceps

Applied anatomy of patella:

  • Patella ossifies from two centres. The segments may not fuse. This gives rise to a bipartite patella, which may be confused for fracture.
  • Patella when fractured into two fragments, they may be screwed together. When broken into many fragments, they may be removed.