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IT Band Syndrome

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Iliotibial (IT) band syndrome affects the thick connective tissue that runs from the outside of your hip to the outside of your knee. In athletes, especially distance runners, this band can become so tight that it begins to rub against the thighbone (femur). 

Your child may have IT band syndrome if they experience pain between the hip and knee that gets worse during exercise. Your child may also have symptoms like:

  • Inflammation (redness or warmth) on the outside of the knee
  • A popping or snapping sound when moving the leg
  • Aching or burning sensations on the outer part of the knee

Treatments

Pain Medicines
Your child’s doctor may prescribe pain medicines to help reduce pain caused by IT band syndrome.

Cold Therapy
Your child can use ice or cold packs on the knee to help with pain and inflammation.

Rest 
Your child will need to give the leg plenty of time to rest and heal. With proper rest, the IT band can relax and the pain will go away.

Rest
Your child will need to give their body plenty of time to rest and heal. With proper rest and casting, most avulsion fractures can heal without surgery.

Physical Therapy
A sports medicine physical therapist can help your athlete prevent future injuries with physical therapy exercises to strengthen the legs and properly stretch the IT band before use. They may also help your athlete with their running form or make suggestions on how to change their training schedule.

Changes in Training
Your child will need to add stretching, warm-ups, and cool-downs to their training regimen. Your athlete may also need to exercise less to give the body enough time between workouts.

Tests

Physical Exam
Your child’s doctor will examine the knee and leg to look for the cause of pain. They may also ask questions about the pain, such as when it hurts.

X-rays
Your child’s doctor may order an X-ray to ensure that no other problems are causing IT band pain.

Why Choose the University of Miami Sports Medicine Institute?

Home to a sports medicine certified pediatrician. The University of Miami Sports Medicine Institute is home to a sports medicine certified pediatrician, who completed specialized fellowship training to help athletes under the age of 18. You can rely on our expertise to help your young athlete recover, rebuild strength, and get back in the game. 

Multidisciplinary support designed just for young athletes. We focus on caring just for children and teens, helping them avoid injuries and return to sports as quickly as possible. Each member of your child’s care team has years of experience and expertise caring for children and adolescents. From physical therapists and pediatric dietitians, to pediatric radiologists and orthopedic surgeons, you can trust that your child will receive treatment designed for their growing body.

Honored to be on your team. Even though we may treat some of your child’s sports heroes, our experts at the University of Miami Sports Medicine Institute are proud to offer all of our patients the same level of expertise at one of the nation's leading sports medicine programs. We combine top-notch care with research, clinical trials, and innovative treatments for your young athlete, at any skill level.

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