Calcaneal Apophysitis – aka Sever’s Disease

UnknownSever’s disease is one of the most common causes of heel pain in children, occurring as a result of overuse of the heel. This causes micro trauma within the growth plates of the calcaneus, leading to pain and tenderness in the heel. The condition is most commonly experienced by children aged 7 to 15 years old.

Signs and Symptoms

It’s important to keep an eye out for the common signs and symptoms of Sever’s disease in children, as they may not otherwise give any indication of being in pain. If you notice your child limping, or having difficulty running and participating in sport due to pain, Sever’s disease may be present. The condition is also accompanied by pain and tenderness around the heel.


There are a number of effective treatments for Sever’s disease which can help to alleviate the condition. In its initial stages, it’s recommended to keep the heel elevated while using compression. Ice and heat therapy can also both be beneficial, as can gentle stretching of the hamstring and calf muscles several times a day. Finally, foot orthotics and medication can be used to alleviate pain and encourage recovery.


Fortunately, Sever’s disease is self-correcting, and usually resolves by itself after the growth of the bone has finished. While no permanent disability remains after this, it’s recommended to stretch regularly to maintain good flexibility. High-quality, well-fitting footwear should also be worn, while excessive running on unyielding surfaces should be avoided.

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