Is your kid complaining of front knee pain? Can you see a bump just below front of knee joint?
If yes, then your kid might be suffering from a condition called, Osgood-Schlatter disease. This is a condition, also known as tibial tubercle apophysitis, usually occurs in children up to age of 16. A tibial tubercle is an upper part of tibia (shin bone), where quadriceps muscle attaches through patellar tendon. An excessive strain or stress on this part and/or abnormal pulling of patellar tendon may cause repetitive traction of patellar tendon on a bone and a growth plate underneath, causing inflammation of growth plate. In some cases, it develops without apparent reason; however, children who play vigorous sports, and do lot of running and jumping are at increased risk of developing this problem. However, less active adolescents may also experience this problem. Children with this condition often presents with tightness and weakness of muscles around the knee joint. This muscle imbalance causes unnecessary extra strain and stress at growth plate and may further aggravate the problem. The common symptoms usually includes pain, swelling at front of the knee joint, difficulty in running, jumping, prolonged walking, squatting, stair climbing etc.
The common treatment for this problem includes use of anti-inflammatory medicines, rest, staying away from vigorous activities and sports until the condition resolves, use of knee brace, and most importantly physiotherapy treatment. Our physiotherapist will perform thorough assessment and formulate personalised exercise program for your kid including mobility, stretching and muscle strengthening exercise to restore muscle imbalance. Ultra sound therapy and laser therapy are also effective treatment strategies to relieve pain and inflammation at front of knee joint.
Written by: Vishal Patel, Physiotherapist