Knee and Foot pain

Knee pain in children can occur for a variety of reasons. This section contains some information about some of the more common reasons for knee pain, these include:

  • Injury, from soft tissue injuries to bony injuries such as fractures
  • Altered biomechanics, possibly as a result of growth
  • Growth related conditions

Anterior knee pain

Anterior knee pain describes pain which is felt around and under the patella (knee cap)

  • Very common, particularly in adolescent girls
  • Usually worse following prolonged periods of sitting and on stairs
  • In more severe cases may result in subluxation or dislocation of the patella (knee cap)

Growth Related Musculo-Skeletal Disorders

Osgood Schlatters disease or syndrome

An irritation of the patellar ligament at the tibial tuberosity, caused by traction on the patella tendon.

  • Characterized by painful lumps just below the knee
  • The condition tends to occur during the adolescent growth spurt before the tibial tuberosity has finished ossification
  • More common in children who participate in sports involving running and jumping
  • Also known as Apophysitis of the tibial tubercle, where small avulsion fractures occur at the ossification centre.
  • More common in boys than girls

Sinding-Larsen and Johansson syndrome

Caused by persistent traction at the junction of the patella and patella ligament

  • Pain and inflammation at the inferior pole of the patella (knee cap)
  • Is usually related to over activity
  • Usually occurs in pre-teenage boys

Sever’s Disease

Caused by inflammation of the calcaneal apophysis

  • Pain and possible swelling in the heel
  • Stiffness in the feet on awaking
  • Occurs in children and adolescents
  • Thought to be due to repeated ‘microtrauma’ at the site of the attachment of the Achilles tendon to the heel, combined with a growth spurt
  • Often occurs in children who actively participate in sporting activities
  • More common in boys than girls
  • Often worse after sporting activities

Plantar Fasciitis

Inflammation of your plantar fascia, a strong band of tissue (like a ligament) that stretches from your heel to the ball of your foot.

  • Thought to be caused by repeated small injuries to the fascia
  • Can occur as a result of an increase in physical activity or a change in training surface (track running to road running)
  • Poor footwear may contribute

How can physiotherapy help?

The physiotherapist will undertake a thorough examination and an in depth history to confirm the diagnosis. Will provide exercises; stretches and advice regarding levels of activity and participation in sporting activities.