Illiotibial Band (ITB) Syndrome


The Illiotibial band (ITB) is a thick tendonous structure on the outside of your thigh that arises from the Iliac crest (Top of the hip bone) and the Tensor Fascia Latae (A small but important muscle of the buttock), and inserts into the outside edge of your Tibia (Lower leg bone).

Many muscles of the buttock and thigh have their tendon in confluence with the ITB. When the ITB is under tension the muscles it is associated with act to extend, abduct, and laterally rotate the hip (move leg behind you, away from you, and twist outwards). This makes the ITB not only a very important structure of the leg, but one that gets put under a lot of tension.

A common complaint, particularly amongst active, people is a tight or sore ITB, or pain to the outside knee, or buttock. This is often symptomatic of prolonged increased tension to the ITB. This fascia (Connective tissue) needs periods of decreased tension in order for the nutrients to flow to the live portions and repair.

During periods periods of activity the muscles inserting into the ITB can become chronically tight, this can lead to the ITB having near constant tension through it. Leading to pain and pathology.

Symptoms of ITB syndrome include:

  • Pain when walking up or down stairs / hills
  • Tenderness in the buttock
  • Unstable feeling in the Knee
  • Clicking or locking of the Knee
  • A feeling of chronic tightness on the outside of the thigh
  • Stinting sensation above the knee
  • Swelling of the knee
  • Pain when changing directions

Treatment can vary depending on level of pain, the way you move, how active you are and other individual factors.

This may include things like:

  • Stretching
  • Footwear assessments
  • Training/Activity modification
  • Orthotics
  • Physiotherapy
  • Massage
  • Dry Needling

Book in to see our friendly team of Podiatrists and we can help you find your feet.

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