The iliotibial band is a band of tissue that runs down the outside of the thigh from the hip to the knee. It provides stability to the knee and hip and helps prevent dislocation of those joints. If the band is tight it can rub across the hipbone or the outer part of the knee: this is IT band syndrome. Each time the knee is bent or the hip flexed, a tight IT band rubs against bone. This is a common complaint for runners and cyclists, but it can happen to anyone who is active athletically.
IT band syndrome symptoms include knee pain and a snapping hip pain when the tight IT band snaps back and forth over the hip. Acupuncture treatments can reduce the pain of IT band syndrome by alleviating the tension in the band causing the pain. In Traditional Chinese Medicine stagnation of chi (energy) and blood results in pain, swelling, tension and dysfunction. Acupuncture frees up the flow of blocked energy and blood, thereby alleviating the symptoms caused by a tight IT band and reducing the patient’s need for anti-inflammatory and pain reducing medications.