Osgood-Schlatter disease


Knee discomfort is common in active children and teenagers, and while growth spurts are natural, they can be uncomfortable. Osgood-Schlatter disease is a common cause of knee discomfort in adolescents and young adults during growth spurts. This article will define Osgood-Schlatter disease, discuss its causes, and discuss treatment options.

In toddlers and teenagers, the knee often suffers from Osgood-Schlatter disease. Inflammation of the patellar tendon, which runs from the underside of the kneecap to the top of the tibia, is the root cause. Pain and swelling in the front of the knee, just below the kneecap, might be caused by tendonitis, which is an inflammation of the tendon. This discomfort may become more noticeable when you engage in activities such as running, jumping, or bending your knee.

Why does one get Osgood-Schlatter's?

Osgood-Schlatter disease is common during adolescent growth spurts because of this correlation. The patellar tendon is particularly vulnerable during puberty and early adulthood because of the uneven rates of bone and muscle development. The tendon can sustain micro-injuries from this tension, resulting to swelling and discomfort. Osgood-Schlatter disease is more common in children and teenagers who engage in sports or other activities that require them to frequently jump or run.


The disease causes are associated with excessive sports activity in the intensive phase of adolescent growth when bone growth is faster than muscle-tendon growth. Because of this, in the area of the secondary ossification center of the upper growth plate of the tibia, micro-traumas occur caused by tensile forces during the contraction of the overstretched and shortened quadriceps in relation to the accelerated bone growth of the lower extremity. Consequently, avulsion fractures of the upper part of the tibia occur.

We distinguish three types of fractures, the most common is type I, where smaller fractures occur, the fragments of which are displaced upwards (femur). Type II is characterized by a degree of complexity and manifests itself at the intersection of the secondary ossification center and the proximal epiphysis of the tibia; despite this, the articular surface remains unharmed in this type. The type III fracture is the most difficult because it involves a full break through the articular surface of the tibia. As a result, the risk of sequelae is significantly higher with this type of break. Patients may experience both discomfort and a problem with their appearance as a result of the formation of a new bone during the course of the healing process, which results in the front portion of the lower leg becoming protruded.


Depending on how severely affected you are by Osgood-Schlatter disease, your symptoms may change. The discomfort and swelling in the front of the knee can range from minor to severe, making it difficult to walk or engage in sports for some people. Tenderness in the front of the knee, below the kneecap, is another possible sign.

Tightness or stiffness in the thighs; swelling and heat around the affected area; pain that is worse with exercise and better with rest

Evaluation and Care

Osgood-Schlatter disease is diagnosed using a combination of the patient's symptoms, medical history, and a physical examination of the knee. Imaging tests, such X-rays, can also be utilized to rule out stress fractures and tendinitis.

Rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory medicine are a common combination for treating Osgood-Schlatter disease. Stress on the patellar tendon can be alleviated by the use of physical therapy, which aims to stretch and strengthen the muscles surrounding the knee. A knee brace or other supportive device may be suggested in some circumstances to aid in knee stability during physical exercise.


Osgood-Schlatter disease is not always avoidable, but it can be avoided with the right precautions from parents and coaches.

Prevention of Schlatter's disease consists of:

  • Prevention of injuries

Such as dislocations, ruptures of knee ligaments, fractures of the patella or lower leg bones;

  • Reducing pressure and physical activity on the lower extremities (normal activity while avoiding excessive strength training);
  • Doable physical culture to strengthen the muscular frame;
  • Control and correction of metabolic disorders, as well as blood circulation and innervation of the lower extremities.
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