Pain, Sports Participation, and Physical Function in 10-14 Year Olds With Patellofemoral Pain and Osgood Schlatter: A Matched Cross-Sectional Study of 252 Adolescents

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STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.

BACKGROUND: Patellofemoral pain (PFP) and Osgood-Schlatter disease (OSD) are common in adolescents, but we lack knowledge on these conditions and their impact in young adolescents (<15 years).

OBJECTIVES: Compare pain, physical activity, quality of life, strength and knee function between adolescents with PFP or OSD, compared to pain-free controls.

METHODS: Self-report questionnaires were used to describe pain, physical activity, knee function, and quality of life in participants with PFP (N=151), OSD (N=51), and pain-free controls (N=50) aged between 10 and 14 years. Hip and knee strength were measured by handheld dynamometry. Physical activity levels were measured using wearable accelerometers.

RESULTS: Adolescents were highly active (accumulating >120min vigorous physical activity per day), with no differences between OSD, PFP, or controls. Adolescents with PFP or OSD scored 23-57 points lower (P<0.001) in the Knee Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (KOOS) subscales compared with controls, with the lowest scores in the 'sport & recreation' and 'quality of life'. Adolescents with OSD had lower knee extension strength compared to controls (P<0.05, effect size (ES) 1.25). Adolescents with PFP had lower hip extension strength compared to controls (P<0.05, ES 0.73).

CONCLUSION: Adolescents with PFP or OSD are characterized by high physical activity levels, despite reporting long-standing knee pain and impaired knee function that impacts their sports participation and quality of life. Clinicians treating adolescents with PFP or OSD may use these findings to target treatment to the most common deficits to restore sports-related function and sports participation. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther, Epub 6 Jan 2020. doi:10.2519/jospt.2020.8770.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Orthopaedic and Sports Physical Therapy
Pages (from-to)1-26
Number of pages26
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Jan 2020


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