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September 22nd, 2016 / Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles Tendonitis or Severs disease?

It’s easy to confuse these two conditions as they both cause pain in the heel.

Severs disease is very common among children, especially those involved with sports. Repeated running and jumping causes the calf muscle to pull on the heel bone, which hasn’t yet fully developed. Once it is ossified, around the age of 15, symptoms disappear. Until then, treatment is focused on reducing the pain. This involves stretching, strapping, wearing supportive footwear, orthotics and modifying your child’s activity levels.

Achilles Tendonitis on the other hand refers to degeneration of the tendon where it attaches to the heel. It is typically linked to overuse, or pushing your feet to work harder than they’re able to. Symptoms include discomfort, swelling and redness at the back of the heel. Treatment is focused on assisting the tendon to heal as quickly as possible and preventing future recurrences. A biomechanical examination is important to identify any areas of the foot’s structure which needs to be corrected with orthoses, mobilisation or dry needling. Wearing supportive shoes is also vital to prevent the Achilles tendon from being irritated unnecessarily.

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