Our amazing Osteopath Megan Rogerson, gives her clinical experience in working with clients who have Osgood Schlatter disease. A keen sports person herself, she loves nothing better than getting on her horse, or doing a gym work out!

Osgood Schlatter disease is characterised by pain just below your knee cap on the upper part of your shin bone (the tibia). You may also feel that you have a bony lump which is sore to touch at the site of pain as well. It usually affects children in their early adolescent years who are active and into sport, and is rare over the age of 16. It can also be related to growth spurts. It is aggravated by activity which involves running, jumping and repetitive bending of the knee, and relieved by rest. Along with the information in this blog post, here is a small article by the Association of Paediatric Chartered Physiotherapists.

Anatomy- below is a picture of the knee. As you can see the knee is made up of 2 bones, the femur (your thigh bone) and your tibia (your shin bone). The muscles at the front of your thigh are your quadricep muscles and they come together to form a tendon which houses the knee cap (patella) which then attaches below your knee to the top of your shin bone. It’s at this point where adolescents feel the pain from Osgood schlatter.

What causes the pain is pulling of the quadricep tendon at its attachment site on the upper shin bone when the quadricep muscles contract. This then causes swelling and inflammation on the bone, the pulling is what also causes the bony lump that can form.

It’s important to get your child’s knee pain diagnosed by a medical professional to make sure they get the right diagnosis and treatment. Here at Back 2 Balance our osteopaths and chiropractors are trained to make the correct diagnosis. Most of the time x rays are not needed to diagnose Osgood Schlatter. However, we do have an on site x-ray facility if it is required. Have a read of this blog on how osteopaths and chiropractors can help with sports injuries.

So how to treat the problem… Osgood Schlatter is self resolving but this can take anywhere from 12-24 months, so there are things that can be done to help the healing process. Due to the fact it is aggravated by activity, it can help to ice the knee before and after exercise with an ice pack covered in a tea towel for up to 15 minutes.

It is important to address any biomechanical factors that may be contributing to the problem, because the pain is caused by the quadricep muscles pulling it is important to make sure that there is no particular tightness through those muscles. Therefore osteopathy, chiropractic and massage can help loosen off those muscles, along with giving your child some stretches to do at home, follow this link to a useful quadricep stretch.

Addressing surrounding areas such as the lower back, hips, ankles and feet to make sure there is no particular tightness will also help.

Research has shown that modifying your child’s activity levels and avoiding certain exercises that aggravate the pain will help symptoms to decrease. Your healthcare professional will help you to come up with a plan, as we still want your child to continue to be active. They will then also help to slowly reintroduce them back to activity so as to not flare up the problem again.

Referral for further treatment is only necessary if the pain persists, affects the person’s functioning and persists into adulthood. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to book a consultation with Megan our Osteopath. Call 01273 206868 or email info@back2balance.co.uk.