Sever’s Disease in Children

Sever's Disease in Children

Although the name might sound pretty frightening, Sever’s disease is actually a common heel injury that occurs in kids. It can be painful, however is only temporary and has no long-term results.

About Sever’s Disease in Children

Sever’s disease, likewise called calcaneal apophysitis, is a painful bone disorder that arises from swelling (swelling) of the development plate in the heel. A development plate, likewise called an epiphyseal plate, is an area at the end of an establishing bone where cartilage cells change gradually into bone cells. As this takes place, the growth plates broaden and join, which is how bones grow.

Sever’s disease is a common cause of heel pain in growing kids, especially those who are physically active. It normally occurs during the development spurt of adolescence, the roughly 2-year period in early adolescence when kids grow most rapidly. This growth spurt can start at any time in between the ages of 8 and 13 for ladies and 10 and 15 for young boys. Sever’s disease rarely occurs in older teens due to the fact that the back of the heel usually ends up growing by the age of 15, when the development plate solidifies and the growing bones fuse together into mature bone.

Sever’s disease is similar to Osgood-Schlatter disease, a condition that impacts the bones in the knees.

Sever’s Disease is among the most common causes of heel pain in active adolescents. Hip stability is restored utilizing a non-surgical positioning device. Symptoms of Sever’s disease are eased through a combination of conservative treatment alternatives and preventative measures can be taken to reduce the risk of developing the condition.

Causes of Sever’s Disease in Children

During the development spurt of early puberty, the heel bone (also called the calcaneus) often grows faster than the leg muscles and tendons. This can cause the muscles and tendons to end up being extremely tight and overstretched, making the heel less flexible and putting pressure on the development plate. The Achilles tendon (also called the heel cable) is the strongest tendon that connects to the growth plate in the heel. Gradually, duplicated stress (force or pressure) on the currently tight Achilles tendon damages the growth plate, causing the swelling, tenderness, and pain of Sever’s disease.

Sever's Disease in Children

Such stress typically arises from physical activities and sports that involve running and leaping, particularly those that happen on difficult surface areas, such as track, basketball, soccer, and gymnastics.

Sever’s disease likewise can result from standing too long, which puts constant pressure on the heel. Poor-fitting shoes can contribute to the condition by not supplying enough assistance or padding for the feet or by rubbing versus the back of the heel.

Although Sever’s disease can happen in any child, these conditions increase the possibilities of it happening:

  • pronated foot (a foot that comings in at the ankle when walking), which causes tightness and twisting of the Achilles tendon, thus increasing its pull on the heel’s growth plate
  • flat or high arch, which affects the angle of the heel within the foot, triggering tightness and reducing of the Achilles tendon
  • brief leg syndrome (one leg is shorter than the other), which causes the foot on the short leg to flex down to reach the ground, pulling on the Achilles tendon
  • obese or obesity, which puts weight-related pressure on the development plate

Symptoms of Sever’s Disease in Children

The most apparent sign of Sever’s disease is pain or inflammation in one or both heels, usually at the back. The pain also may encompass the sides and bottom of the heel, ending near the arch of the foot.

A child likewise might have these related issues:

  • swelling and inflammation in the heel
  • difficulty walking
  • discomfort or stiffness in the feet upon waking up
  • pain when the heel is squeezed on both sides
  • an uncommon walk, such as walking with a limp or on tiptoes to avoid putting pressure on the heel

Symptoms are generally worse during or after activity and get better with rest.

Diagnosis of Sever’s Disease in Children

A doctor can usually tell that a child has Sever’s disease based on the symptoms reported. To confirm the diagnosis, the doctor will probably analyze the heels and ask about the child’s activity level and involvement in sports. The doctor might likewise use the capture test, squeezing the back part of the heel from both sides at the very same time to see if doing so causes pain. The doctor might also ask the child to stand on tiptoes to see if that position causes pain.

Although imaging tests such as X-rays generally are not that helpful in identifying Sever’s disease, some medical professionals purchase them to dismiss other issues, such as fractures. Sever’s disease can not be seen on an X-ray.

Treatment for Sever’s Disease in Children

The immediate goal of treatment is pain relief. Due to the fact that symptoms typically intensify with activity, the primary treatment for Sever’s disease is rest, which assists to relieve pressure on the heel bone, decreasing swelling and lowering pain.

As directed by the doctor, a child should reduce or prevent all activities that cause pain until all symptoms are gone, specifically running barefoot or on tough surface areas because tough effect on the feet can get worse pain and inflammation. The child might be able to do things that do not put pressure on the heel, such as swimming and biking, but talk to a doctor first.

The doctor may also recommend that a child with Sever’s disease:

  • carry out foot and leg exercises to extend and enhance the leg muscles and tendons
  • raise and use ice (covered in a towel, not applied straight to the skin) to the injured heel for 20 minutes two or three times daily, even on days when the pain is not that bad, to help decrease swelling
  • use an elastic wrap or compression stocking that is created to help decrease pain and swelling
  • take an over the counter medicine to lower pain and swelling, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).

Keep in mind: Children ought to not be given aspirin for pain due to the risk of a very severe disease called Reye syndrome.

In really severe cases, the doctor may advise that the child use a cast for anywhere from 2 to 12 weeks to immobilize the foot so that it can recover.


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