Chondromalacia patella – Definition
Chondromalacia patella is a softening or wearing away of the articular cartilage on the undersurface of the kneecap (patella). Articular cartilage is a smooth substance that covers the femur (thighbone), the tibia (shinbone), and the patella. These structures form the knee joint. The articular cartilage cushions these three bones and allows them to move freely and easily where they meet in the knee. But, when the articular cartilage softens or wears away, pain and inflammation result.