Osgood–Schlatters Disease (OSD) – Explained

OSD is an osteochondrosis of the tibial tuberosity resulting in adolescent knee pain. It commonly affects young boys aged 13-15 years and is also seen in girls aged between 10-12 years. OSD tends to develop during a period of rapid growth and high levels of activity involving excessive knee flexion e.g. jumping or running.

Repeated quadricep contraction e.g. knee flexion, can cause traction to the soft apophysis (area of bone) on the tibial tuberosity where the patellar ligament attaches – consequently  softening the area or causing partial avulsion to the developing bone.

OSD results in inflammation of the patellar ligament at its attachment site on the tibial tuberosity, resulting in:

  • Knee pain and tenderness
  • Swelling around tibial tubercle
  • Tight or tender quadricep muscles

Symptoms usually resolve between 12-24 months.

At Jonathan Clark Physiotherapy we offer advice regarding activity modification to help manage your symptoms. We also provide bio-mechanical assessment and correctional advice and exercises to resolve excessive pronation which can predispose individuals to Osgood-Schlatters. Additionally, our therapists can also devise individualised stretching and strengthening programmes to help manage pain and reduce symptoms.

OSD is also known as:

  • Apophysitis of the tibial tubercle
  • Lannelongue’s disease
  • Lannelongue–Osgood–Schlatter disease

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