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Osgood Schlatter syndrome

Gholve, Purushottam Aa; Scher, David Ma,b; Khakharia, Saurabha; Widmann, Roger Fa,b; Green, Daniel Wa,b

doi: 10.1097/MOP.0b013e328013dbea

Purpose of review Osgood Schlatter syndrome presents in growing children (boys, 12–15 years; girls, 8–12 years) with local pain, swelling and tenderness over the tibial tuberosity. Symptoms are exacerbated with sporting activities that involve jumping (basketball, volleyball, running) and/or on direct contact (e.g. kneeling). With increased participation of adolescent children in sports, we critically looked at the current literature to provide the best diagnostic and treatment guidelines.

Recent findings Osgood Schlatter syndrome is a traction apophysitis of the tibial tubercle due to repetitive strain on the secondary ossification center of the tibial tuberosity. Radiographic changes include irregularity of apophysis with separation from the tibial tuberosity in early stages and fragmentation in the later stages. About 90% of patients respond well to nonoperative treatment that includes rest, icing, activity modification and rehabilitation exercises. In rare cases surgical excision of the ossicle and/or free cartilaginous material may give good results in skeletally mature patients, who remain symptomatic despite conservative measures.

Summary Osgood Schlatter syndrome runs a self-limiting course, and usually complete recovery is expected with closure of the tibial growth plate. Overall prognosis for Osgood Schlatter syndrome is good, except for some discomfort in kneeling and activity restriction in a few cases.

aDivision of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, USA

bWeill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, USA

Correspondence to Daniel W. Green, MD, Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Division of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery, 535 East 70th Street, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY 10021, USA Tel: +1 212 606 1631; fax: +1 212 774 2776; e-mail:

© 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.