Research shows that kids attempting specialization and intense training in a single sport should delay efforts until adolescence, as this may create more damage. It is recommended that kids hold off on specializing until they are at least 15-years-old to minimize their chance for injury. By that age, boys typically have three years left of growing and girls are just about done with their growth spurts. “During the growth spurts, the growth plates are at a higher risk for injury,” says Dr. Liebeg with Akron Children’s Hospital. One of the most common growth plate injuries is Sever’s disease, or heel pain in growing kids, especially physically active kids, that manifests after the heel’s growth plate is inflamed.

Sever’s disease is a common condition in growing kids and teens. If your child is experiencing foot or ankle pain, see podiatrist Dr. James C. Ricketti, DPM of Hamilton Square. Dr. Ricketti will provide quality foot and ankle treatment.

Sever’s Disease

Sever’s disease is also known as calcaneal apophysitis, which is a medical condition that causes heel pain I none or both feet. The disease is known to affect children between the ages of 8 and 14.

Sever’s disease occurs when part of the child’s heel known as the growth plate (calcaneal epiphysis) is attached to the Achilles tendon. This area can suffer injury when the muscles and tendons of the growing foot do not keep pace with bone growth. Therefore, the constant pain which one experiences at the back of the heel will make the child unable to put any weight on the heel. The child is then forced to walk on their toes.

Toe gait- develops in which the child must change the way they walk to avoid placing weight on the heel. This can lead to other problems as well in the future.


Acute pain – pain asscoiatied with Sever’s disease is usually felt in the heel when the child engages in physical activity such as walking, jumping and or running.

Highly active – children who are very active are among the most susceptible in experiencing Sever’s disease, because of the stress and tension placed on their feet.

For more information about Sever’s Disease, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, please contact our office in Hamilton Square, NJ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle injuries.

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