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What is Osgood Schlatters?

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Osgood Schlatter Disease was named after the two physicians that first defined it in 1903 - Dr Robert Osgood from Ohio and Dr Carl Schlatter from Switzerland. Not, as is often thought, after the Chelsea footballer Peter Osgood! It is characterised by activity related pain that occurs just below the kneecap (patella), at the top of the shin bone (tibia).

Severs Disease that is specific to the heel area was similarly named after Dr J.W. Sever in 1912. Severs disease occurs at the back of the heel bone (calcaneus) and causes heel pain in children.

Today hundreds of thousands of children are diagnosed with the condition every year. Many others are never diagnosed and the discomfort is often dismissed as "Growing Pains". However, if left untreated up to 60 % will have some discomfort in the knee area as adults.

Another closely related, although rarer, injury is Ischial Apophysitis which occurs in the hip bones where tendons attach muscles to the pelvic bones.

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Osgood Schlatter is caused by the pull of the powerful thigh and calf muscles on their respective tendons where they attach to the bone. Football, Rugby, Athletics, Hockey, Gym, netball and other strenuous activities such as dance and running can all initiate conditions.

They can also be the result of extreme trauma or an extremely rapid "growth spurt". Unless the inflammatory cycle is broken, the conditions can persist for many months and even years.

Common Symptoms

  • Pain, swelling, or tenderness below the knee.
  • Pain that becomes worse during Sports activities.
  • Limping after physical activity.

Osgood causes

Children between the ages of 9 and 16 who are both physically active and in a "growth spurt" are most likley to suffer from Osgood Schlatter Disease. If unresolved it can be painful, of long duration, and have permanent detrimental effects both on the bone, as well as on a young athlete's potential.

A recent Finnish study found that 13% of the teenagers of that country had symptoms of Osgood Schlatter Disease. Predominately found mainly in boys, it now happens almost as frequently in girls. As with many other health conditions there is a definite genetic factor that can predispose young athletes to these conditions. Look at the top of the shinbones of close relatives of those children and you will quite often see the bony lump (osteophyte) left as an artefact.

This is where the body has tried to heal itself by laying down additional bone in the area. This is the typical signature of Osgood Schlatter and in about 75% only affects one knee but in 25% of cases can affect both.

The injurys tend to be found in young sportspeople who are faster, quicker and stronger or more competitive. The catch 22 is that those children who are best equipped to excel in sports are the same ones that put most pressure on their young bodies and are often the most likely to contract Osgood Schlatter, Severs or Ischial Apophysitis.

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Until recently the most common treatment for Osgood Schlatters Disease was abbreviated as "RICE". This stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. Often non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) are also recommended. Unfortunately, many times these treatments may prove to be inadequate. The condition, osteochondrosis at the tendon's attachment point on the tibial tubercle, may include microscopic bone chipping, inflammation and tears, and only in the most extreme cases, separation of both cartilage and bone from the tibia.

However, based upon years of experience with OSD in young athletes in various sports and pursuits, there is a novel new product called Oscon. It appears to work on a variety of levels to help treat the painful condition. The method of action appears to be in at least three areas. First is the proven biological effect of certain Vitamin E isomers on inflammatory free radicals. The most biologically active of these is RRR-a-tocopherol. Antioxidants such as Vitamin E act to protect cells against the effects of free radicals, which are potentially damaging by-products of the body's metabolism.

Second is an increase in glutathione peroxidase due to the increased presence of selenium. This enzyme is the general name of an enzyme family with peroxidase activity whose main biological role is to protect the organism from oxidative damage. The biochemical function of glutathione peroxidase is to reduce lipid hydroperoxides to their corresponding alcohols and to reduce free hydrogen peroxide to water. Thirdly, these two micronutrients seem to act synergistically to reduce inflammation and pain due to free-radical activity at an injury site.

Vitamin E has long been recommended as a topical wound healer, and it appears that certain forms have that effect when taken internally. More research is continuing on just why this combination is so remarkably effective in cases of Osgood-Schlatter. Improvement is almost always seen in less than a week! Please contact us about your own experiences with Oscon. We are confident that you will be as pleased as we were when we first employed this formula.

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