Iliotibial Band Syndrome
What is ITB Syndrome?
Iliotibial Band (ITB) Syndrome is an injury that affects the outer portion of the knee. The iliotibial band is a thick band of fascia that surrounds the outside of the thigh. When this band becomes tight or inflamed, it can cause pain and discomfort in the outer knee or thigh.
What causes ITB Syndrome?
1. Excessive Physical Activity
Overuse or sudden increase in physical activity, especially with repetitive motions that involve knee movement can increase demand on the ITB.
2. Suboptimal Biomechanics
Certain structural issues or muscle imbalances can put more stress on the IT band.
Muscle dysfunctions around the hip and knee joint will reduce stability during movement and contribute to ITB syndrome.
3. Tight Muscles
Tight muscles around the hip and the knee, including glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps can affect alignment and contribute to ITB syndrome.
How does physiotherapy Treat ITB Syndrome
Resolves The Root Cause
During the assessment, your therapist will explore which factors are contributing to your ITB dysfunction. Your therapist will then provide treatments to correct your hip and knee mechanics, prescribe exercises, and educate you on how to manage and reverse your ITB dysfunction.
1. Manual Therapy
Myofascial release: to reduce pain, tightness, and inflammation of the muscles, joints, nerves, and fascia of the affected areas.
Joint mobilization: to promote smooth joint movement and mobility of the back, hip, knee, and ankle.
2. Biomechanical Optimization
Movement pattern conditioning: optimizing alignment and stability around hip, knees, and feet will reduce stress on the ITB.
Gait conditioning: reducing compensations during walking will facilitate smooth ITB movement during demanding activities.
3. Exercise Therapy
Stretching: to improve flexibility and reduce muscle tension in the hip and knee.
Strengthening: to improve the activation and stability of the muscles in the hip and knee to restore optimal function and help reduce the risk of future injuries.
Home exercise program: individualized exercise prescription to restore optimal and balanced movement.
Acupuncture: use of thin needles to improve local and systemic function, regulate the nervous system, and promote the body’s natural healing processes.
Heat and cold therapy: to manage reduce pain and tension or control inflammation.
Electrostimulation: use of electrical currents to stimulate muscles and reduce pain.
Ultrasound: use of high-frequency sound waves to produce deep tissue heating to reduce muscle tension, fascial tension, and inflammation.
Laser therapy: to improve blood flow, reduce pain and inflammation, and promote tissue healing.
Taping can temporarily improve alignment of the hip and knee to facilitate recovery.
Recommendations regarding lifestyle and activity modifications and posture to reduce risk of recurrence.