Growth related knee pain in kids: What parents need to know!

What could be causing my childs knee pain?

Osgood Schlatters is a condition diagnosed by pain over the tibial tuberosity (a boney prominence 3 cm directly below the knee cap) and swelling in the area. The most common patients presenting with this knee pain are adolescents between the age of 10-14 years old who have a high level of activity. This type of knee pain can be caused by overloading of the knee with sport/activity.

Anatomy of the knee
Osgood Schlatters effects the tibial tubercle and can be quite painful! It occurs when the bone grows a little bit faster than the tendon and muscle. With exercise the tubercle becomes overloaded and sore

What can physio do to help?

Adolescent athletes will need to modify sport/activity with a graduated loading program to return them back to sport. They will also benefit from a strengthening program of quadriceps muscles as these are often poorly formed in adolescents with Osgood Schlatters. Stretching of the quadricep and taping techniques can be used with good effect to decrease symptoms.

How long will it take to improve?

The knee pain symptoms associated with Osgood-Schlatter’s disease may come and go for 6 months-2 years. Adolescent athletes with this type of knee pain have to continually manage their level of activity, being careful not to overload the knee. They will also need to develop quadricep strength and improve lower limb biomechanics.

Physiotherapists are trained to manage Osgood Schlatter’s associated knee pain and help keep younger athletes active!