Does everyone have a fabella?

Not all people have fabellae, however, and there is likely a genetic component controlling the ability to form one – but for those who can form a fabella, this increased mechanical forces might drive their formation.

What is the fabella bone?

The fabella is a sesamoid bone that is embedded in the lateral head of the gastrocnemius muscle and often articulates directly with the lateral femoral condyle. It is present in 10-30% of the general population with a higher incidence in Asians.

Is a fabella vestigial?

Dr Berthaume likened it to the appendix, another potentially harmful vestigial organ. But unlike the appendix, which is shrinking in humans but is larger in other mammals, fabellae are becoming more common.

What is a fabella in medical terms?

The fabella is a sesamoid bone in the posterolateral capsule of the human knee joint. The presence of the fabella in humans varies widely and is reported in the literature to range from 20% to 87% [1-7]. The fabella is located in the posterior aspect of the knee where lines of tensile stress intersect.

Is the fabella useless?

The fabella is found in some people buried in the tendon just behind their knee. Doctors think it is entirely pointless, and you can happily live without it – many people do. However, people who have arthritis appear more likely to be in possession of a fabella.

Is a fabella hereditary?

Fabella presence/absence is due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors: as the prevalence rates of other sesamoid bones have not changed in the last 100 years, we postulate the increase in fabella prevalence rate is due to an environmental factor.

How can I tell if I have a fabella?

Examination. Physical examination may reveal the presence of swelling/tenderness in the posterolateral aspect of the knee. Palpation of the fabella may suggest the presence of a firm nodule in the left posterolateral popliteal fossa, medial to the tendon of the biceps femoris, and approximately 1 cm in diameter.

Why do some people have a fabella?

Dr Berthaume said: “The fabella is a sesamoid bone — a tendon-bound bone that grows in response to mechanical forces like friction, tension, pressure, and stress. Larger muscles and longer shin bone in males produce more mechanical force, which explains why men are more likely than women to develop fabellae.”

What percent of people have a fabella?

The presence of the fabella in humans varies widely and is reported in the literature to range from 20% to 87%. The fabella can be found in 10 to 30 per cent of the population and if it is present there is a 50 per cent chance that it is bilaterally.

Can a fabella be removed?

After the arthroscopic visualization of the fabella along with assessment of damage to the surrounding structures, the fabella is excised. The use of the arthroscopic procedure allows for excision of this sesamoid bone with minimal resection, thereby decreasing the risk of injury to surrounding tissue.

How is fabella syndrome treated?

Fabella pain syndrome can be treated with physical therapy, injection of local anesthetics or steroids near the site, radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy (rESWT) or fabellectomy [6]. Physical therapy entails the patient be placed in a prone position with the legs supported at an angle of 30 degrees flexion [15].

How common is a fabella bone?

The fabella is a sesamoid bone located behind the lateral femoral condyle. It is common in non‐human mammals, but the prevalence rates in humans vary from 3 to 87%.