Sever’s disease, an overuse injury common among children aged 8 to 14, is characterized by heel pain where the leg meets the foot. Repetitive activities such as running, walking, and jumping can cause a strain on the growth plate of this delicate area resulting in inflammation that leads to discomfort. Being aware of physical activity levels may help avoid unnecessary suffering from Sever’s disease. Symptoms of Sever’s disease typically include tenderness and swelling in the heel area, as well as pain that worsens with activity. Pain may be especially noticeable when a person stands up after sitting for long periods of time or when running or jumping. Other signs may include difficulty walking or limping due to discomfort in one or both heels.
Sever’s disease can be effectively treated by resting the afflicted area and taking anti-inflammatory medication. Applying ice packs to reduce inflammation, as well as using orthotic devices or shoes with arch supports, are often recommended for physical activities such as exercising. In some cases, physical therapy may also be beneficial in strengthening muscles around the feet and ankles which helps prevent reoccurrences of symptoms.
When Sever’s disease does not respond to conservative treatments, surgery can be considered a last resort. The procedure involves eliminating bony growths from joints connected by tendons that are impaired due to injury. It is important to only consider this option after all other noninvasive attempts have been exhausted and no more alternatives exist.