Once again, thank you for suggesting topics of interest to you for our TT series.
Today’s post is about ITB friction syndrome. Or ITB Syndrome for short.
ITB syndrome is very common in runners. It occurs more often in runners who are poorly conditioned from a strength/core stability perspective.
What is the ITB?
The ITB is a long muscle/tendon that stretches from your pelvis, across the knee to the front outer part of your tibia or shin bone. When your knee bends, the ITB will go from being in front of your knee to almost behind your knee. As the ITB moves, it crosses over a bony prominence called the lateral epicondyle. If this happens repetitively some of you will develop pain on the outer side of your knee when running.
How is ITB Syndrome Diagnosed?
A physical exam alone is usually all that is necessary to diagnose ITB syndrome.
How is ITB Syndrome Treated?
Physical therapy is usually effective, because it focuses on strengthening your pelvis, hip and thigh musculature… and not because it stretches the ITB. There is a fair amount of research out there which shows that the ITB will not become longer with stretching exercises. Anyway…
For those of you who do not respond to activity modification, physical therapy and perhaps anti-inflammatories — an ultrasound guided injection just beneath the ITB will usually work well. Very very very rarely is surgery needed to rid you of your ITB syndrome symptoms.