Physical Therapy: Osgood Schlatters

Patient Info: Male, 28 years old, knee pain for 14 years in left knee and 12 years in right knee.

Previous diagnosis: Osgood Schlatters in both knees. Pain in knees has persisted despite a decrease in activity.

Osgood Schlatters is common in kids who do a lot of running and jumping. Chronic overuse of the quadriceps muscle group leads to inflammation and tearing of the tibial tuberosity (that bump below your kneecap). This condition can be extremely painful and usually the recommendation is to ice it and stop doing the activity. For most athletes, telling them to just stop playing their sport is not reliable advice. We try to correct any problems in the quad or knee and strengthen the hamstring and glutes to help support the knee.

For our adult patient, he was instructed to stop playing sports but never given any active way to correct his problem. Even after ceasing exercise completely his knee pain has continued for over a decade.

In order to fix this, we restored the mobility to the knee joint and quadriceps by treating the scar tissue that had accumulated around his patellar tendon, lateral quad and medial quad. We also treated the MCL, LCL, and the ball of cartilage that sits around the knee joint known as the knee capsule. By treating the scarring that had built up around his knee we
took a great deal of pressure off of his tibial tuberosity – easing his pain.

After improving his mobility, we had a lot of instability and muscle weakness surrounding the knees. If left alone, his problem would slowly return due to a lack of support from the leg and hip muscles. We started working the patient through stability drills – bridges, kneeling exercises, and eventually single leg deadlifts and lunges. As the stability in the leg improved the pain stayed away and the patient’s coordination improved. Now he doesn’t have to deal with his knees hurting all day at work.

What would happen if we skipped all of the manual work and just went straight to exercising? Not a lot. When joints and muscles have been compromised by scar tissue, they don’t move the way they should and they can’t be strengthened effectively. If we left his knee alone the improvements we would have seen would have been both minor and temporary. Ever heard someone say, “It feels good when I do the exercises but comes back whenever I forget them.” If we don’t restore the ability for a joint to move properly, it will continue to wear out faster than it should and eventually will be too far gone to get back to 100%.

Have you dealt with Osgood Schlatters or does your child suffer from it? Get the problems behind it corrected instead of waiting for it to go away on its own.

The same goes for any joint, deal with it now and you can save a lot of pain later. Call us at 847-382-3194 to schedule a complimentary consultation and see how we can help you.

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