The following symptoms commonly presents with calcaneal apophysitis or Sever disease:
Entire Body System
Sever’s Disease Treatment With John Gallucci Sever’s Disease is painful but usually not long lasting — and due to inflammation in the heel but can be a real problem for youth soccer players. [goalnation.com]
Sever disease is a common and painful inflammation of the calcaneal apophysis. [symptoma.com]
Repetitive stress on the heel’s growth plate can trigger painful inflammation. The clinical term for the condition is calcaneal apophysitis. It’s an inflammation of the growth plate in the heel. [healthline.com]
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, help reduce the pain and inflammation. Ice: Ice the area to reduce inflammation. [kansascityfootandankle.com]
Sever’s disease also called calcaneal apophysitis, is a condition caused due to inflammation of the growth plate in the calcaneus (heel bone). [njorthoinstitute.com]
Apophyses are open areas in the bone and are a “weak link” making these areas more prone to injury. As the child matures these areas fuse together and become a solid bone. [tria.com]
Related to adolescent growth spurt with weak ankle dorsiflexion and tight gastrocsoleus complex. May be overuse injury caused by repetitive microtrauma to the trabecular metaphyseal bone. (Ogden JA, JPO 2004;24:488). [eorif.com]
We don’t believe that the foot or ankle is weak and so loading it isn’t necessary. [sydneyheelpain.com.au]
Until then, new bone is forming at the growth plate (physis), a weak area located at the back of the heel. When there is too much repetitive stress on the growth plate, inflammation can develop. [acfas.org]
- Difficulty Walking
Keep an eye out for: Swelling and redness in the heel Difficulty walking Stiffness in the feet upon awaking Discomfort when the heel is squeezed on both sides An unusual walk, such as walking with a limp or on tiptoes to avoid putting pressure on the [orthopedicone.com]
Some other common Sever’s disease symptoms include: Swelling and inflammation in the heel Redness Difficulty walking, running, or jumping Stiff feet upon waking up in the morning Discomfort if the heel gets squeezed Limping or tiptoeing, so as not to [medi-dyne.com]
The symptoms include pain, tenderness, swelling or redness in the heel, and they might have difficulty walking or putting pressure on the heel. [lexingtonkypodiatry.com]
Some kids find it hard to walk, while others may just feel a slight ache in the heel. Some kids will have a limp, while others will have significant difficulty walking at all. Q: Are some kids at greater risk than others? A: Yes. [health.clevelandclinic.org]
Limping also occurs, more severe pain after walking or exercise, and increased difficulty walking, especially pain during running or playing a sport. This pain and swelling usually is diagnosed as Sever’s Disease. [jagpt.com]
Any of the following may be used to treat your child's pain: NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, help decrease swelling, pain, and fever. This medicine is available with or without a doctor's order. [drugs.com]
There was no preceding history of rash, fever, respiratory tract or gastrointestinal tract symptoms. Examination revealed a well-nourished boy with normal vital signs. [casereports.bmj.com]
SEVER BURNING, STRETCHING PAINS Herpes zoster FEVER, IRRITATION OF AREA DUE TO FRICTION WEAKNESS, SEPTIC INFECTION IN VESICLES, LEAKING, UNCOVERED WOUNDS,. MULTIPLE AREA –BUNCH SPOTS SPREADS IN SPIRAL MANNER, ETC. [indiamart.com]
When to Call a Healthcare Provider If your child has or develops any of the following symptoms, he or she should be seen by a healthcare provider: Severe pain that does not improve or go away with rest Fever higher than 101.4 degrees Fahrenheit, taken [nationwidechildrens.org]
- Heel Pain
Other conditions that cause heel pain Heel pain can also be caused by a stress fracture in the heel, bursitis, tendonitis, bone cysts, and rheumatologic disorders. [healthychildren.org]
Sever disease ( sē'vĕr ), an osteochondrosis of the heel, probably secondary to microfractures in the bone where the Achilles tendon attaches to the posterior calcaneus; an overuse injury and a common cause of heel pain in older children. [medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com]
It is the most common cause of heel pain in children, and can occur in one or both feet. Heel pain in children differs from the most common type of heel pain experienced by adults. [acfas.org]
It is the most common cause of heel pain in children, and it can occur in one or both feet. Heel pain in children differs from the most common type of heel pain experienced by adults. [foothealthfacts.org]
Calcaneal Apophysitis is the most common cause of heel pain in children. Heel pain in children differs from the most common type of heel pain experienced by adults. [kansascityfootandankle.com]
- Foot Pain
Foot pain is not only limited to grown-ups. Often, healthy and active children will complain of pain in one or both heels shortly after running, engaging in sports or even walking. The pain is centered at the back of, or under the heel. [footlogics-shop.com.au]
Certain foot shape variations can predispose to Sever’s disease, such as a very flat foot or the opposite, a foot with very high-arches. SYMPTOMS Heel pain may extend into the Achilles tendon or the arch of the foot. [onsmd.com]
We might also recommend rest, applying ice, elevating the foot, and over-the-counter pain medication. [lexingtonkypodiatry.com]
If your child notices foot pain or heel pain after exercising, have the doctor look at it. [health.clevelandclinic.org]
- Heel Swelling
[…] activity; * Pain in the heel in the morning, or when the heel is squeezed; Treatment of Sever’s Disease Treatment is aimed at reducing the swelling and inflammation that is occurring in the heel which then reduces the pain. [neurohealthchiro.com.au]
[…] and symptoms associated with infracalcaneal bursitis include: Pain directly under of the heel Pain or discomfort that increases with prolonged weight-bearing activities Pain and swelling under the heel Redness under the heel Treatment The first and most [nwfootankle.com]
- Back Pain
[…] or jumping Heel tendon that feels tight Pain when you squeeze the child's heel near the back Pain in one or both heels Diagnosis It is not difficult for a doctor to diagnose Sever's disease in a youngster or teenager. [stanfordchildrens.org]
These are common symptoms of Sever disease: Heel pain that begins after starting a new sport Walking with a limp or on tiptoes Pain that gets worse with running or jumping Heel tendon that feels tight Pain when you squeeze your child’s heel near the back [urmc.rochester.edu]
Often this is confused with plantar fasciitis which is rare in children. This is a condition of inflammation of the heel's growth plates. [bestfootdoc.com]
But the condition can quickly progress to shock, which is marked by falling blood pressure and body temperature, confusion, clotting abnormalities and bleeding into the skin. Blood poisoning is a medical emergency and can be fatal if left untreated. [lindbergnutrition.com]
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Patients with Sever disease are usually diagnosed by means of a thorough clinical history and physical examination which demonstrates the characteristic pain in the foot.
Diagnostic tests like radiographic test may be used to rule out concomitant illness that could be potentially serious and present similarly to calcaneal apophyisitis . The following imaging techniques are implored in patients carrying a high suspicion of Sever disease:
- Radiographic X-ray: This procedure will demonstrate any lesions like stress fractures in the calcaneum or bone cysts. It is a tool which is neither diagnostic nor prognostic in Sever disease.
- Computed Tomography (CT) Scan: This set of x-ray beams elucidates the tarsal area and differentiates calcaneal apophysitis or Sever disease from a rare clinical disorder called tarsal coalition which is the failure of the hind bones to physiologically separate.
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI): This radiographic imaging modality may elucidate the bones and the muscles clearly; thereby ruling out possible osteomyelitis from Sever disease.
It should be understood that athletic children who starts at a younger age may fall victim to overuse syndrome of the foot due to increasing frequency of use through practice and actual sport. For this reason, growing child athletes are more prone to Sever disease than the other children in their adolescence .
Treatment is primarily focused in reducing pain symptoms, overcoming limitations of movement, and prevention of recurrence. Patients with Sever disease may need to rest for at least 2 months for recuperation before they resume back to sporting activities. The affected foot may be placed on top of a half an inch inner sole lift or molding orthoses to stretch the calf muscle persistently and prevent it from abruptly pulling or straining the calcaneal attachment .
Pre-activity and post-activity icing may also prevent apophysitis swelling after an event. Oral antiinflammatory medications may be used to control pain in the heels. Reports on the use of ketoprofen gel in heel pain among children have shorten recuperation time to 18 days . In severe cases of Sever disease may benefit from a 2 to 3 weeks of casting in mild equinus orientation of the foot. Physical therapy may help allay the symptoms and reduce recurrence rate of Sever disease.
By definition, Sever disease is an affliction of childhood which resolves beyond 15 years old due to the complete ossification of the apophysis of the heel.
Any incomplete healing and microfractures by the apophysial line will spontaneously resolve with the bone formation. Stress fractures and bone cysts however may coexist with Sever disease and present symptoms in the same way. Both conditions may persist beyond 15 years old and may need surgery or rehabilitation if they chronically persist with some discomfort.
There has been no evidence so far that Sever disease can cause any long term pathology or complications to affected children.
The basic etiology involved in Sever disease is stress and overuse upon the calcaneum during physical activities like prolonged running, persistent straining of the calf muscle and continuous impact during jumping.
Flat footed individuals with biomechanical defects or biomechanical malalignment on the natural plantar arch may inherently pull on the calcaneal attachments and cause perennial inflammation of the apophysis .
There are no available statistical data on the international incidence of Sever disease but it is commonly seen among growing children worldwide. There are no mortalities associated with Sever disease.
The long term pain felt in the heel can essentially limit the child’s range of activity from his sports performance to his daily simple chores. Sever disease has a predilection to male children with a ratio of 13 males to 7 female patients. An Irish study reveals that the average age of presentation was 11.83 years old among boys and 8.67 years old among girls .
The pathophysiology of Sever disease is mainly due to the continuous stress exerted on the apophysial line which affects the fragile cartilages that are still starting to ossify. It is well established that the apophysis are formed with more fibrocartilage than the epiphysis of the long bones; thus, they are less resistant to persistent axial stress .
This undue stress causes microfractures which radiographically appear as resorption, fragmentation and diffuse sclerosis that may eventually lead to healing. Although clinical evidence of fragmentation does not necessarily mean fractures in Sever disease because ossification center in the rapid spurt of puberty may appear in multiple site at the same time.
The incidence of Sever disease can be significantly prevented in a child when the risks are identified early. The following preventive measures may help a child overcome the risk for Sever disease and prevent heel pain:
- Weight control: Parents must help their children control their weight. Overweight and obese children are more prone to the disease.
- Use of the proper supportive shoes: Children who are flat footed may benefit with the use of supportive shoes that maintains the plantar arch. For those who has experienced heel pain, an inner sole lift may keep the calf muscles stretched and firm.
- Cleated athletic shoes must be avoided.
- Children must not be forced to perform beyond his capacity.
Sever disease or calcaneal apophysitis is a clinical disease characterized by the swelling of the heel bone. The inflammation of the calcaneum is due to the frequent pulling of the gastrocnemius (calf muscle) on the calcaneal insertion where the bone is not totally mature yet. Sever disease is presently classified under the non-articular osteochondroses type of disease for adolescents and children .
This disease condition is common among athletic or active adolescents between the ages of 9 to 15 years old. Sever disease is the most common cause of heel pain in children in one or both heels. Unlike adult heel pain that is relieved by walking around, pain in calcaneal apophysitis does not resolve in this manner. Sever disease may cause heel discomforts for months in children and may resolve once the calcaneum bone matures fully.
Heel pain, and limitation of movement, impaired sporting performance pain in squeezing the heel may occur.
Diagnosis is mainly by clinical history and physical examination. Imaging techniques are implored to rule out other problems
Treatment and follow-up
Rest, use of supportive footwear, pain relievers, casts and rehabilitation. Patients should have regular visits with their physicians to prevent recurrence.
- Katz JF. Nonarticular Osteochondroses. Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research. 1981; 158:70.
- Scharfbillig RW, Jones S, Scutter S. Sever's Disease: A Prospective Study of Risk Factors.J Am Podiatr Med Assoc. 2011; 101(2):133-45 (ISSN: 1930-8264)
- Micheli LJ, Ireland ML. Prevention and management of calcaneal apophysitis in children: an overuse syndrome. J Pediatr Orthop. Jan-Feb 1987; 7(1):34-8.
- Tu P, Bytomski JR. Diagnosis of heel pain. Am Fam Physician. Oct 15 2011; 84(8):909-16.
- Sever JW. Apophysitis of the Os Calcis. New York Medical Journal. 1912; 95:1025-1029.
- Weiner DS, Morscher M, Dicintio MS. Calcaneal apophysitis: simple diagnosis, simpler treatment. J Fam Pract. May 2007; 56(5):352-5.
- Rachel JN, Williams JB, Sawyer JR, Warner WC, Kelly DM. Is radiographic evaluation necessary in children with a clinical diagnosis of calcaneal apophysitis (sever disease)? J Pediatr Orthop. Jul-Aug 2011; 31(5):548-50.
- Brenner JS. Overuse injuries, overtraining, and burnout in child and adolescent athletes. Pediatrics. Jun 2007; 119(6):1242-5.
- Gijon-Nogueron G, Cortes-Jeronimo E, Cervera-Marin JA, García-de-la-Peña R, Benhamu-Benhamu S, Luque-Suarez A. Foot orthoses custom-made by vacuum forming on the non-load-bearing foot: preliminary results in male children with calcaneal apophysitis (Sever's disease). Prosthet Orthot Int. 2013; 37(6):495-8 (ISSN: 1746-1553)
- White RL. Ketoprofen gel as an adjunct to physical therapist management of a child with Sever disease. Phys Ther. 2006; 86(3):424-33 (ISSN: 0031-9023)