Osgood-Schlatter disease is a common condition suffered by active children between the ages of 9 and 16. It is often passed off simply as growing pains. Whilst the condition is associated with growth, it is very much a real ailment that requires careful management and treatment.
It features a painful lump just below the knee, this is because of inflammation of the patellar ligament at the tibial tuberosity. The pain usually occurs during physical activity such as running, jumping, squatting and going up and down stairs.
Other risk factors include overuse, ie too much activity too soon and reduced flexibility in the hamstrings or quadriceps.
Initial treatment is aimed at providing pain relief with icing, limiting activities and the use of anti-inflammatory medications. Once initial painful symptoms have settled appropriate strengthening and stretching exercises will be given. The use of taping and braces can be helpful. It is important to identify any predisposing biomechanical abnormality such as flat feet. This can be done with your podiatrist.