Osgood-Schlatter Disease

About Osgood-Schlatter Disease

Osgood-Schlatter disease is pain below the kneecap that occurs in children and adolescents experiencing growth spurts during puberty.  It most often affects those who participate in sports that involve running, jumping, bending and changes of direction — such as soccer, basketball, volleyball, figure skating and ballet.  During these activities your child’s thigh muscles (quadriceps) pull on the tendon that connects the kneecap to the shinbone.  This repeated stress can cause the tendon to pull away from the shinbone a bit, resulting in the pain and swelling associated with Osgood-Schlatter disease. In some cases, your child’s body may try to close that gap with new bone growth, which can result in a bony lump at that spot.

Age ranges differ by sex because girls experience puberty earlier than boys. Osgood-Schlatter Disease typically occurs in boys ages 13 to 14 and girls ages 11 to 12.  The condition usually resolves once the child’s bones stop growing but may require treatment until that time to relieve pain and allow the athlete to return to competition.  Abnormal joint movements, poor posture and weakness of the surrounding musculature can contribute to increased strain to the tendon and growth plate during repetitive movement like running and jumping.

How physical therapy helps
Physical therapy is the first line in conservative treatment for Osgood-Schlatter’s Disease. Commonly, this condition is exacerbated by underlying abnormal mechanics of movement, walking and muscle weakness. Our trained physical therapists are experts in evaluating your movement to pinpoint the source of the trouble. Modalities may be used to alleviate pain and discomfort, while the Astym treatment can stimulate healing and hands-on therapy can improve joint mechanics and movement.

Finally, gentle strengthening exercises and joint coordination exercises help to restore stability to the affected area and prevent re-occurrence of symptoms. To discover how we can help your Osgood-Schlatter’s pain CALL US TODAY!