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  • Writer's pictureDr. Josh Jordan

Sever's Disease

graphic of person with black sneakers with ankle strain or ankle pain

Sever's disease, also known as calcaneal apophysitis, is a condition that affects the growth plate in the heel bone. This condition is prevalent in active children involved in sports that involve running and jumping.

Symptoms include heel pain during or after physical activity, pain and tenderness on the back of the heel, and difficulty walking or participating in sports or activities. With Sever’s Disease, we must address calf strength and ankle mobility, and strengthen the hip and thigh muscles to take excess stress off the calf and ankle. During periods of very acute pain from Sever’s Disease, decreasing overall activity temporarily may be helpful as well to allow for more recovery.

Assessment of restricted areas is key in Sever’s Disease to determine why excess stress is being placed on the calf and achilles. Shown here is a test we use to determine ankle mobility and compare the affected side to the unaffected side.

chart showing how to access ankle mobility

Physical therapy is a key component and the first line of treatment in the comprehensive management of Osgood-Schlatter's and Sever's disease. If your child or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of these conditions, seeking the guidance of a skilled physical therapist can make a significant difference in the journey towards recovery.

Phone: 212-353-8693 • Fax: 347-507-5510 • Office Email:

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