Osgood-Schlatter disease (OSD) is a common cause of knee pain in growing adolescents. It is an inflammation of the area just below the knee where the tendon from the kneecap (patellar tendon) attaches to the shinbone (tibia). In some cases, both knees have symptoms, although one knee may be worse than the other.

Osgood-Schlatter disease most often occurs during growth spurts, when bones, muscles, tendons, and other structures are changing rapidly. Because physical activity puts additional stress on bones and muscles, children who participate in athletics — especially running and jumping sports — are at an increased risk for this condition. However, less active adolescents may also experience this problem.

In most cases of Osgood-Schlatter disease, simple measures like rest, ice, over-the-counter medication, and stretching and strengthening exercises will relieve pain and allow a return to daily activities.

Your physiotherapist and podiatrist can help you with exercises and strengthening programs to assist in the management of OSD. If biomechanical variations lead to excessive rotation on the knee cap and patella tendon, arch supports may be prudent as part of a broader treatment plan.  Our podiatrists can assist in deciding what device, if any, is most appropriate for your child.

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