Background: Intensive physical load can damage epi-/apophyseal growth. Osgood-Schlatter disease is a well-known and sport-associated overuse injury of the tibial tuberosity apophysis. Long-lasting load-associated pain and a reduced ability to play sports can be the consequence.
Aim of the study: The aim of this study was to analyse the safety and effectiveness of extracorporeal shock wave therapy (ESWT) for recalcitrant Osgood-Schlatter disease.
Patients and methods: 14 adolescent patients, median age 14 (13.2-14.7) years, suffering from recalcitrant Osgood-Schlatter disease (16 symptomatic knees) were treated with radial extracorporeal shock waves. The nine boys, median age 14 (13.5-15.0) years and the five girls, median age 12 (10.8-15.2) were retrospectively followed up 5.6 (3.4 - 6.7) years later using the disease specific VISA-P-G questionnaire which is validated for jumper's knee.
Results: At follow up the median VISA-P-G score was 100 (82.9-100.9). Twelve of 16 knees (75%) reached 100 out of 100 VISA-P-G points. Four patients changed their sports activity due to persisting problems at the distal patellar tendon insertion. Four knees had persisting tibial tuberosity pain when playing sport. Pain induced by activities of daily living (stair climbing) was stated in two cases. No side effects or long-term complications were reported.
Conclusions: This pilot study demonstrates that radial ESWT is a safe and promising treatment for adolescent athletes with recalcitrant Osgood-Schlatter disease.
© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.