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Knee/IT band pain for a year, just been diagnosed with a mild scoliosis

I am a 21 year old female with no previous injury history. About a year ago I started running more than usual and developed pain on the outer side of my knee. I stopped running immediately and let it rest but the pain persisted and began to hurt even when doing normal activities like walking or even sitting. I went to a physio therapist who gave me some glut strengthening exercises but nothing helped (diagnosed with IT band syndrome). I then got pain in my right knee as well, but this has since stopped. 

Over the past six months I have tried many things - acupuncture, cupping, massage, anti-inflammatories, all sorts of exercises, cortisone injections - but nothing has helped. It generally gets worse when I walk, but hurts just as often when I am just sitting. 

About one month ago I was diagnosed with a mild scoliosis which my therapist thought could be the root of my knee problems. I have since gone overseas to study abroad for a semester, trying to cope with the pain myself. It's still causing me a lot of pain and I was wondering if anyone had any thoughts on it, or if anyone has had anything similar - all suggestions welcomed - just want to be able to live an active life again :( 


  • WLLadyWLLady Ontario CanadaPosts: 1,440
    Hi bridgetlockhart!!!

    This is interesting to me, because about 10 years ago i started running in my first 5K road races.  training was okay, except for this nagging pain on the outside of my left knee.  my PT tried everything, taping, heat, stretching, gluts, hamstrings, quads etc.  the ONLY thing that helped a little bit was taping-we would tape around the head of the fibula and tibia, because apparently these were being forced apart for some reason.  orthotics didn't help.....finally the pain got so bad i quit running and i started with awful low back pain, and found just recently that i had severe scoliosis (not diagnosed before) which was probably there when i was younger.  so now i'm of course going back through my medical history and slowly connecting the dots....i bet my knee hurt when i was running because my spine was out and therefore my hips were tilting and making my left leg slightly shorter (operatively shorter, but not actually) so when i ran i was always forcing and hurting the curve in my back and it would give and affect my knee, because of the force being transmitting to the outside of my knee instead of through my knee straight up the bones.  once we started taping the running was better, and my back didn't hurt as much, but it sure didn't prevent anything from happening to me in the long run.  so.....i'm wondering if it's worth having a discussion with your doctor about the scoli potentially affecting your knee.....and vice versa.  it's all physics....and once one piece is out all the others have to compensate.....

    for me, i took up a different sport.  i started swimming.  i just had surgery (a long scoli fusion of 10 levels) 3 or so weeks ago, so i'm pretty much learning how to walk again and nowhere near "active" yet, but before surgery i was about 2.5 years waiting on diagnoses and waiting on surgery, more tests etc....and swimming pretty much saved me....being almost weightless in the water i could do ANYTHING and the best part-it was for the most part pain free-in my knees and my back!!!!! i would highly recommend going lower impact - i cannot tell you how much better it was for me.  of course, i'm me and not you!  but might be worth giving it a try......and then finding yourself a good orthopedic to work with you on staying as active as you can.  i swam right up to the day before my surgery.  it was awesome, and i really think it has helped me with my recovery so far!!!

    hang in there and keep looking for answers.  maybe you physiotherapist can help too....good luck....keep an eye on that scoliosis....hopefully it doesn't get worse and pose more problems! 
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Dec '16 T10-S2 fusion with pelvic fixation. Laminectomies L2, L3, L4, L5, facet removal, cages L4-5, L5-S1, severe scoliosis, arthritis and stenosis repair. 

  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    Hello bridgetlockhart !

    Please click on link for helpful information!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

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