Severs Disease: Pediatric Heel Pain

Do you have children who participate in athletic activities such as team sports?  They might have complained to you about the back of their heels hurting.  In an overall healthy child under the age of 16 who participates in athletic activities, the source of their heel pain could be Severs Disease.

Severs Disease is inflammation of the growth plate in the heel bone.  The heel actually grows faster than the Achilles' tendon that attaches to the back of the heel.  So as the bone grows the Achilles is trying to catch up but is usually tight and can cause inflammation from the tension at the growth plate on the heel.  This phenomenon is accelerated in children who are more active and need a more functioning Achilles' tendon.  There are many ways to help alleviate the pain such as rest from strenuous activity, stretches, arch supports, and anti-inflammatory medications, and possibly even immobilization in a walking boot.  It is important you bring your child in for an evaluation to rule out any other source of heel pain and to provide the best course of treatment.

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