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Sever's Disease

more about Sever's Disease

Calcaneal apophysitis

  • Sever's disease is also called calcaneal apophysitis.  Calcaneal apophysis refers to a part of the heel bone consisting of growth cartilage and bone.  Sever's disease is a condition which a calcaneal apophysis is pulled by a tight heel tendon, causing chronic strain and injury.  This is a common cause of heel pain in children.

  • Heel pain, especially after running and walking
  • Tenderness at the back of the heel
  • Limping due to extreme pain in the back of the heel

  • Sever's disease occurs during the period of active growth in the heel bone, usually developing in children between the ages of 8 to 13.  During this period, the bones grow faster than the muscles and tendons.  Tight heel tendons may pull the calcaneal apophysis at its attachment site.  As a result, chronic strain causes injury and pain in the heel.

  • Sever's disease is resolved on its own when the growing is complete, and does not cause any long-term complications.  The goal of treatment is pain relief.  Anti-inflammatory medications and stretching exercises of the heel cord are helpful in relieving the pain.  Also helpful in reducing pain is shoe modification (i.e., inserts or heel lifts) followed by limited activity.

more about Sever's Disease

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