Symptoms of Osgood Schlatters disease typically consist of a gradual onset of pain at the front of the knee, specifically the tibial tuberosity or bony bit at the top of the shin.
The condition usually gets worse with increased activity and improves with rest. Overuse causes respective stress on the patella tendon which joins the kneecap to the top of the shin bone.
Osgood schlatters knee pain is usually localised to a specific point at the tibial tuberosity and is therefore fairly easy to diagnose. Tenderness and pain will be felt at the tibial tuberosity and will get worse during exercise, particularly weight bearing or impact type exercise such as running, football, jumping, basketball and similar sports. Pain will also be worse after exercise.
The athlete is likely to experience pain when contracting (tensing) the quadriceps muscles when the leg is straight or performing squat exercises. In particular a single leg squat is likely to reproduce symptoms.
Download our Osgood Schlatters Symptoms tracking chart.
The tibial tuberosity may become swollen or inflamed and may even become more prominent than normal. There is likely to be locallised swelling over the lower front of the knee and inflammation of redness may be seen. If the athlete has suffered for some time then they will likely have atrophy (wasting away) of the quadriceps of thigh muscles. In extremely severe cases they may do an X-ray to see exactly how much damage has occurred.
Symptom tracker chart
One of the most important aspects of treating Osgood Schlatters disease is managing the training load. Our symptom tracker chart is a great way of keeping a record of what training or activity you have done and the levels of pain experienced over time. You, your coach and physio can then look back and see how much is too much and aim to get the maximum training done without overdoing it. Download our free symptom tracker record chart (PDF)