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Separating the myths from facts: time to take another look at Osgood-Schlatter ‘disease’
  1. Sinead Holden1,2,
  2. Michael Skovdal Rathleff1,2
  1. 1 Center for General Practice in Aalborg, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
  2. 2 SMI, Department of Health Science and Technology, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sinead Holden, Aalborg University, Aalborg 9220, Denmark; siho{at}

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Osgood Schlatter ‘Disease’

Osgood Schlatter ‘disease’ (OSD) is a condition that most have heard of, and that parents of elite adolescent athletes fear. Despite being so common, what do we actually know about OSD and what can we tell adolescents and their parents based on current available evidence?

What we know

Osgood Schlatter is considered an apophysitis of the tibial tuberosity, and affects up to 1 in 10 adolescents aged 9–15- particularly athletes. The apophysis is the point of attachment of the patellar tendon onto the bone and may be vulnerable to high stress before maturation. Osgood Schlatter is characterised by localised pain and swelling at the tibial tuberosity. This injury has a negative effect on adolescent’s ability to participate in sports and is associated with decreased lower limb strength and power, poor function and low quality of life and pain.1 2

What we think we know

Osgood Schlatter was originally thought to be a result of repetitive loading causing traction of the patellar tendon at its’ insertion on the tibial tuberosity. Since being first described over 100 years ago, there have …

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  • Contributors SH and MSR contributed equally to the concept, content and writing of this editorial.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

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  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.