Surgery for Patellar Tracking Disorder (Lateral Release and Medial Imbrication Technique)


This surgery treats a kneecap that isn't properly aligned with the femoral groove. That's a groove in the femur where the kneecap should rest. Aligning the kneecap with this groove relieves knee pain.


To begin, you're put to sleep. Or, we give you medicine to make you feel relaxed and numb. We make some small openings in the skin of your knee. One is for a camera device called an "arthroscope." It lets us see the inside of your joint on a monitor. The other openings are for the surgical instruments.

Lateral retinaculum

Now we adjust the tension on one or both sides of your kneecap. Often, we need to relieve tension in the lateral retinaculum. That's the ligament on the kneecap's outer side. We cut it to let the kneecap shift.

Medial retinaculum

We may also need to adjust the medial retinaculum. That's the ligament on the kneecap's inner side. We tighten it with sutures. This helps keep the kneecap in place.

End of procedure

When the surgery is done, your knee is bandaged. Follow your surgeon's instructions for a safe recovery.