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The Younger Patient

Jo's career has involved the management of elite level gymnasts as a member of the Medical Commission for the British Gymnastics Team in the 1990's and more recently as a physiotherapist in a residential classical ballet school. This has enabled her to understand the needs and demands of the developing musculoskeletal system in the teenage and pre-teenage population.

Transient aches and pains are often reported by this age group. However persistent pain particularly following exercise or limiting the ability to participate in sport can cause concern for parent and the patient alike.
It is important they are effectively screened and the source of the problem identified,

Young people generally make excellent progress once they have a clear understanding of their condition and how they can work to resolve it.

Frequent findings relate to repetitive bursts of high activity which can place significant demands on a skeletal system which has yet to reach full maturity.

Presenting conditions include:
Non-specific low back pain
Hypermobility of joints
Knee pain - Osgood Schlatter's Disease
Hip impingement - FAI syndrome
Heel pain (Severs Disease)

Treatment often includes postural correction, activation of core muscles, effective stretching of over active muscles, functional recruitment of muscles and sports specific exercise.

Close communication with the patient's GP is essential in the management of this population. They are kept informed of clinical findings and treatment plans. Should further investigations or onward referral be required this is carried out via the GP.

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