Growth Spurt Injuries Part2, with Wil Seto

Mark: Hi, it's Mark from TLR. I'm here with Wil Seto of Insync Physio in Vancouver. One of Vancouver's best physiotherapist clinics, multiple time winners of best physios in Vancouver. And we're going to talk about growth spurt injuries part two, we're talking about Sever's Syndrome. How are you doing Wil? 

Wil: I'm doing great. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark: What the heck is Sever's Syndrome? 

Wil: Well, Sever's Syndrome is basically a condition that causing heel pain and primarily in the athletic population of people who are immature muscle bone development. So basically, you know, people who are age as young as 8 up to like 15 to 16 years old. And it's specifically in the heel, like I was mentioning. 

Mark: So what kind of symptoms would show or lead one to start to investigate this? 

Wil: Yeah, so there would be sometimes painful inflammation that you would see and in more severe cases, a lot of inflammation in the heel. And in the insertion point to where your Achilles tendon is basically the tendon that attaches your calf muscle.

So your calf has made up of like three muscles, like your big ball muscles called the Gastroc. And then the one inside called the Soleus and they basically are attached by your Achilles, that attaches onto your heel bone, called your Calcaneus. And your Calcaneus basically for an immature, in terms of a physiological development, you know, ages 8 to 15, that's actually where it tends to happen with higher stress, higher loads tend to be more focused in that area. And also the other thing that you also have to consider is the fact that is there a big growth spurt because if there's a big growth spurt then that'll also be a contributing factor.

 And the other things too, is that you want to look at like how are they pounding? Because with Sever's, you know, if they're actually doing a lot of running and they also have bad footwear, you know, and they're poorly cushioned or worn down.

And depending on the surface that they're running and they're absorbing more of the forces. So there's a huge sort of biomechanical factor involved here.. 

Mark: So we kind of merged symptoms and diagnosis. So basically pain in the heel is the symptom that's going to show up. Is that right? 

Wil: That's correct, yeah. 

Mark: So what's a typical course of treatment? 

Wil: Yeah. So the biggest one is really, you know, you gotta rest. You really gotta let this settle down. Because like I was saying with these immature adults, you really gotta make sure that you give the growth plates and give the growth spurt that they experience to start to mature a little bit more. Because if you don't, then it can become a chronic problem and it can actually have all these other chronic compensations happen later in life. And it can come back and haunt you. 

Myself and our team we've been doing this for a very long time. We have so much experience, like decades of experience in treating athletes and working with young athletes and seeing them through from being young kids to adults and how a lot of them have had problems. Like with volleyball players, with runners, when they've developed conditions of this sort where, you know, whether it's Sever's or another growth spurt issue that they ended up having continued issues in their adult life, as they try to do avid sports.

And that's huge to really understand that you got to let it rest. And you don't want to be like, oh, it's like a tendonitis, but it's not. Because it's immature muscle, immature tendon development that you gotta just give time to really recover. And with younger folks and younger people, you just got to give them that chance. 

Mark: So if your kid's having a bit of knee pain, a bit of, in this case heel pain, the guys to see are Insync Physio. You can book online insyncphysio.com. Or you can call the Vancouver office at (604) 566-9716 to book or in North Burnaby, (604)298-4878.

Get your kids in there. Get them healed properly. Get expert advice to relieve their pain so they can get back to their favourite sport. Thanks Wil. 

Wil: You're welcome, Mark.