Although knee cap pain has traditionally been viewed as self-limiting, it is common for pain to continue in the longer term, but research related to the number of people with ongoing pain is inconsistent.
Tailored physiotherapy involving exercise rehabilitation has been reported to significantly reduce pain in 60% of patients after 1-year. Longer term outcomes on the other hand have been shown to be a little more varied. One study has reported that if left untreated up to 90% of people with knee cap pain still report symptoms 18 years after their diagnosis.
Another study found that 57% of people were not happy with their outcomes between 5 and 8 years after receiving treatment for knee cap pain. It was also found that people with worse and longer duration of symptoms before starting treatment were more likely to not be happy with their outcomes.”
Regardless of the inconsistent research findings on how long pain might last, knee cap pain treatments including exercise, foot orthotics and taping can be effective in short-term. Thus, key factors for having a better long-term outcome are likely to be using these effective treatments.