Osteopathy Case Study – Runner’s ITB Syndrome
A 30 year old woman came to our clinic to address her right, lateral knee pain. She was an elite level triathlete who had been suffering servere pain for 1 year, on and off. After taking a detailed history, we discovered that the only significant event that could be linked to her pain was a bike accident she was in 2 years ago. She had suffered a head injury to the left side of her head after being hit to the ground by a car. The patient had been referred to the clinic by a physiotherapist who had done excellent work but was unable to resolve the issue entirely.
After an assessment, it appeared the patient didn’t have any restriction in her foot, knee or hip which had been treated effectively by the physiotherapist. She did have decreased mobility in the left half of her pelvis. After assessing the patient’s posture when standing, I found her posture was straight except that her head was side bent to the left. This was the side that was injured in the bike accident.
As we investigated further, it was noted that she had no mobility in the left side of the cranium around her ear, which is the temporal bone. This bone is the same shape as a half of the pelvis and they influence each other through a long sheet of connective tissue called fascia. This long piece of tissue starts over the ear, comes down the side of the neck, shoulder, side of the ribs to the hip and down to the outside of the foot. It is called the lateral fascial chain.
Even more interesting is that when we started to treat the skull with cranial osteopathy, and mobilized the temporal bone, she felt heat and a burning feeling in the outside of her knee where she experienced her pain. After the treatment, her hip moved better, and her posture corrected so that her head was more aligned. It took another two treatments to have her back to her regular training schedule.