What is Calcaneal Apophysitis?
What is Calcaneal Apophysitis? Also known as severs disease, is a common cause of heel pain in active children. Although Calcaneal Apophysitis is often referred to as severs disease, it is not a disease process, rather, a stress reaction in the growth plate or apophysis of the heel bone (Calcaneus).
This stress reaction or inflammation is thought to be a combination of an excessive traction force from the calf muscles through the Achilles tendon, and an excessive ground reaction force.
This condition often occurs during rapid growth periods around puberty, and we often see a peak of symptoms appearing at different ages of the sexes, being:
- Girls: 8yrs – 11yrs
- Boys: 10yrs – 13yrs
Symptoms of Calcaneal Apophysitis
A child may present with pain in one or both heels, during or after exercise. Symptoms are often worst on rising in the morning or after rest following activity.
A child may be observed to be limping or become hesitant to be involved in activities that involve running or jumping.
Calcaneal Apophysitis can often be confirmed through a positive “squeeze test”. X-ray imaging of the area is generally unhelpful and not required.
Common Cause of Calcaneal Apophysitis
- Sudden increases in height or weight associated with growth spurts
- Rapid increases in sport and activity, especially explosive activity like running and jumping
- Playing or training on hard surfaces
- Limited ankle movement, often caused by calf muscle tightness
- Inappropriate footwear for a chosen activity
- Possibly poo biomechanics and excessive rearfoot pronation. (There are varying opinions on how this may contribute to symptoms).
How can Calcaneal Apophysitis be Treated?
There are many treatment options that can be addressed to relieve the irritation and get the child more comfortable and back to sport sooner.
When To See A Podiatrist
As soon as you experience pain or prolonged paid over a period of a week or two, book an appointment with your local podiatrist to get your foot examined. The earlier you see a podiatrist the better, as the longer you leave the condition untreated, the worse it can get and the more extreme treatment methods become.
East Gosford Podiatry
Here at East Gosford Podiatry on the Central Coast, we have a team of highly skilled podiatrists with vast knowledge of treatment options that can help diagnose and treat severs disease.
East Gosford Podiatry is very active in the Central Coast Community and surrounding suburbs including Wyoming, Gosford, Terrigal, Green point and Erina. We are passionate about providing comprehensive podiatry care and individually assessing and tailoring treatments to have all our patients pain-free and functioning.