Osgood Schlatter syndrome - Western Paediatric Physiotherapy
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Osgood Schlatter syndrome

Osgood Schlatter syndrome


  • Osgood-Schlatter syndrome is a painful knee condition that affects adolescents.
  • During a growth spurt, it is thought that the tendon attaching the quadriceps muscle to the knee joint becomes tighter, creating a strain on the growing bone (tibial tuberosity), particularly with physical activities that involve contraction of the quadriceps. E.g. jumping
  • Osgood-Schlatter syndrome usually resolves by itself with a period of activity modification, stretches and pain relief. Physiotherapy can help with guiding you through this.


Symptoms of Osgood-Schlatter syndrome

The symptoms of Osgood-Schlatter syndrome depend on the severity of the condition, but may include:

  • pain in one or both knees
  • pain when straightening the knee joint or full squatting
  • pain on running, or going up and down stairs
  • pain that eases with rest
  • a swollen tibial tuberosity


Treatment for Osgood-Schlatter syndrome

Osgood-Schlatter syndrome usually resolves within 12 months. However, the knee may remain uncomfortable until growing finishes.

Treatment options include:

  • activity modification or relative rest – completely avoiding activities that are painful for at least a couple of weeks followed by gradual return to activity guided by symptom levels
  • frequent use of icepacks to reduce the local pain and swelling
  • stretching and strengthening exercises for the quadriceps, hamstring and calf muscles – a suitable program can be provided by a physiotherapist
  • medications, including painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs
  • very rarely, surgery – only in extreme cases and only once growth has ended.
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