Osgood-Schlatter Disease (Knee Pain) in Adolescent Children

Is your child experiencing pain in the front of their knee? Children between the ages of 7 and 15 can develop a condition known as Osgood-Schlatter disease. This is a common injury in adolescent children that causes inflammation of the patellar (knee) tendon and at the attachment site of muscles on the tibia (shin). As children are very active this can create increased stress on the tendon which causes the pain. This occurs most commonly during rapid growth spurts.


Symptoms of Osgood-Schlatter Disease include:

  • Pain and swelling at the front of the knee below the kneecap
  • Growth plate irritation
  • Pain which is aggravated by physical activity and decreases with rest
  • Activities such as jumping, running and walking for prolonged periods can bring on or exacerbate symptoms depending on the severity.


Osgood-Schlatter is diagnosed by physiotherapists or doctors. Usually, no imaging is needed however, often doctors perform X-rays to rule out any avulsion fractures (fractures where a small piece of bone that attaches to the tendon gets pulled away from the rest of the bone). Usually, this disease continues until the child stops growing so there is no set time frame to recover from this injury. If diagnosed and treated early, symptoms can last a few weeks to a few months and can result in a full recovery.


After diagnosis, physiotherapists can assist with giving the child appropriate stretches, taping, hands-on treatment and general advice on how to modify their activity/load. Podiatrists are also useful in helping select appropriate footwear and/or orthotics depending on the severity.

If your child is experiencing these symptoms, book an appointment to consult our physiotherapists for more advice.

Read More….

For more information on Severs Disease, read our blog HERE
For more information on if weight training stunts growth in children, read our blog HERE
Fore more information on why it’s important to stretch, read our blog HERE

Vaishya, R., Azizi, A. T., Agarwal, A. K., & Vijay, V. (2016). Apophysitis of the Tibial Tuberosity (Osgood-Schlatter Disease): A Review. Cureus, 8(9), e780. https://doi.org/10.7759/cureus.780

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