Growth-Related Knee Pain In Children – Causes & Symptoms


Knee pain is often seen in old age people with severe pain in the thigh, lower leg, upper leg, and side leg. But today, children, especially adolescents, suffer knee pain due to many factors like specific trauma or injury. However, no symptoms can identify this problem, and doctors can examine the joints and current activity of the child. 

Many common causes of knee pain occur in children between 3 to 12 years old. However, if you are confused or want an idea related to some knee pain happening in growing age, this article is right to read. Here are the common knee pains and treatments related to the early recovery of a child. 

Causes And Symptoms Of Knee Problems In Growing Children

There are many reasons for knee pains in teenagers or growing children, but the most common is due to overuse. So, it is important to consult paediatric physiotherapists immediately for fast treatment and reduced pain. Some of the other causes are-

  • Problems with alignment
  • Sports activities being performed overdoing
  • Imbalance of thigh muscles, which is supporting the knee joint
  • Weaker bones from birth
Causes And Symptoms Of Knee Problems In Growing Children

Symptoms Of Knee Problems In Kids

Growing pain varies from child to child. Some go within a few minutes, hours or weeks, mild or severe. Some symptoms include-

  • Pain in the area that happens late in the day or around night time but goes away in the morning. 
  • Pain in the lower or upper leg, calves or front or back of the leg, area behind the knees or thighs. 
  • Popping or cramping sounds when your child performs certain activities.
  • Unable to bear weight on the leg
  • Restricting from doing day-to-day activity. 

5 Major Growth-Related Knee Pain In Children And Its Treatment

Knee pain is a common problem in growing children, which can be diagnosed with expert medical treatment. Let’s see some common but major growth-related knee pain in children with treatments-

1] Osgood Scatter Disease

Joints grow faster than muscles, and your child may face problems or discomfort while knee-causing tendons or stretching around the joint. Osgood scatter disease is the type of knee pain in children that is caused due to overuse of joints. 

It is usually in children from 10 to 15 years old who play sports or are involved in other activities like jumping, running or others. Moreover, it can be treated with physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medication, and RICE (raise the area, pressure to injury, evaluate the sore limb) technique. 

2] Tumours

Tumours around the knee are major knee pain in adolescents or kids that is mild and can be treated with aspirin. It rarely occurs at night and does not need any diagnostic treatment. However, if the problem persists for more than two weeks, then it requires podiatrists. 

Osteosarcoma is a malignant tumour that occurs around the knee joint. Also, tumours around the hip can cause knee pain in children, which is invested with plain radiography.  

3] Reactive Arthritis And Inflammatory Arthritis

Reactive arthritis rarely occurs in adults, but nowadays, children suffer from this situation, which causes knee pain. It mainly occurs due to septic or bacteria for distinct sites. Moreover, it causes morning stiffness, performing activities later in the day and more. Similarly, inflammatory arthritis is usually caused due to increased blood supply in growth joints.  

4] Anterior Knee Pain  

Anterior knee pain is another common problem that causes hurt and development in a growing child. It is caused by growing limbs and a supply of blood which is felt around the patella. It is common in adolescent girls and is treated with exercise and medication. Also, it requires referral to underlying soft tissue or bone abnormalities. 

5] Soft Tissue Knee Injuries

Injuries caused by sports or activities such as running, cycling, jumping, or other causes soft tissue knee problems among growing children. You can find immediate swelling caused by a joint capsule fracture. Also, there is intra-articular ligament rupture, causing pain in joints. Moreover, it can be treated with anti-infamous, specialist review, and consultant medication. 

Read More:- Mobility Aids In Sports Rehabilitation: Every Athlete Should Know This

Bottom Line

Being a guardian or parent, you always want your child to be happy and painless. However, if your child suffers from knee pain, then the right physiotherapy can quickly resolve the problem and has no long-term effects. Also, avoid any activity that brings knee pain, such as playing, jumping, locking or others.

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Dr. David G Kiely is a distinguished Medical Reviewer and former General Medicine Consultant with a wealth of experience in the field. Dr. Kiely's notable career as a General Medicine Consultant highlights his significant contributions to the medical field.

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