There are common causes of knee pain in children but it can be difficult to determine which aches and pains need medical attention and which they may “grow out of”.
A common cause of knee pain, particularly in boys, is Osgood Schlatters. Your child may complain of pain and tenderness below their knee cap and could recently have had a growth spurt. The pain is due to irritation of a ligament, called the patellar ligament, which connects the kneecap to the shin bone. This is sensitive to touch and your child may have pain with walking or jumping activities or on the stairs.
The initial treatment for Osgood Schlatters is “RICE” Rest Ice Compress Elevate which can help ease pain symptoms. Symptoms usually subside when the growth spurt ends…unfortunately this could take 1-2 years! Gentle stretching of the quadriceps muscle is also advised as it can reduce the tension on the patellar tendon. It is also important to consider lower limb biomechanics and gluteal/ hip muscle strength and intervene with Physiotherapy treatment where necessary to help accelerate the healing process.