ITBS is one of the leading causes of lateral knee pain in runners. The iliotibial band is a superficial thickening of tissue on the outside of the thigh, extending from the outside of the pelvis, over the hip and knee, and inserting just below the knee. The band is crucial to stabilizing the knee during running, moving from behind the femur to the front while walking. The continual rubbing of the band over the lateral femoral epicondyle, combined with the repeated flexion and extension of the knee during running may cause the area to become inflamed.
A Note from the Doctor: Many people with IT band pain start with their family doctors or with an orthopedic evaluation. Physical Therapy (stretching, rehab exercises, electric stimulation, ultrasound, cold laser therapy, etc) and rest from activity is most often prescribed. Some other treatments that can be provided include cortisone injections, prolotherapy (consult a sports medicine MD for these and other options).
IT band pain can be quite painful and can cause runners to be sidelined for several months if no treatment is sought out. Most people that develop ITB Syndrome think that something is wrong w/ the knee b/c of the location of the pain (outside aspect of knee). Myotherapy, along w/ a regimen of stretching and foam rolling exercises is imperative if the runner wants to continue w/ activity. Time frame for recovery do vary w/ each individual. Some respond within 1-2 treatments while others may take several treatments. Rest from running may also be advised if we are not getting the desired results.