Growth Plate Injuries: Sever’s Disease and Fractures

Growth plates are present in the bones of every growing child. Growth plates are areas of developing cartilage near the ends of bones. Once the growth of the bone is complete, the growth plates close and are replaced with solid bone. Because growth plates are the weakest area in a growing skeleton, they are vulnerable to injury.

Repetitive stress is a common cause of growth plate injuries. This minor injury can occur in any bone with a growth plate and often results in inflammation. This commonly affects the growth plates in the heel bone, this condition is called Sever’s disease. Thisfrequently occurs when the child is undergoing a growth spurt and whilethese injuries can be painful, they do not have any long-term effects. We often manage these injuries with physical therapy, supportive shoes and orthotics to reduce stress on the affected growth plate.

Another cause of growth plateinjuriesis through a direct injury – often causing a fracture at or through a growth plate. An x-ray is taken to visualize the fracture pattern. Growth plate fractures are evaluated through the Salter-Harris classification system.

In this classification system, the fracture is classified based on where the fracture is in relation to the growth plate. The fracture pattern will give us clues as to how well the fracture will heal and if growth in the bone will be impeded. In looking at the fracture patterns, we predominantly look at where the fracture is in relation to the growth plate, if the fracture is displaced from its normal anatomic position and if there is any compression injury to the growth plate. Fractures that cause compression of the growth plate or are displaced have a poorer prognosis than those that do not.

These growth plate injuries are often treated with immobilization in a cast or boot. If the fracture is displaced, the doctor may need to reduce the fracture back into its anatomical position with surgery or manipulation.

Growth plate injuries are fairly common in children. Less severe injuries do not often lead to complications, but certain growth plate fractures can lead to a loss of bone growth. It is important to have the injury evaluated by a doctor to determine the best course of action for the injury.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

11,739 Total 1st Party Reviews
4.9 out of 5 Stars
  • Google
    Everyone is very nice and recieved outstanding care.
    Theresa W.
  • GatherUp
    110 % well treated!
    Martha C.
  • Yelp
    Surgeons are in a position of moral hazard. They make more money from surgery than from a low-tech solution. I was impressed th...
    Andy S.
  • GatherUp
    Very happy!!
    Martha G.
  • GatherUp
    Very friendly and personable staff and very comfortable and confident with the doctor.
    William M.
  • GatherUp
    The staff were polite, communicative and efficient.
    Lauralee A.
  • GatherUp
    Doctor Briskin is caring, knowable and one of the best doctors I have ever come in contact with. There is physical therapy ava...
    Howard F.
  • GatherUp
    Excellent concerned, friendly service from the staff to the Dr. Knowledgeable personnel provided answers to questions/concerns....
    Robert J.
  • GatherUp
    I'll be back as needed. Thank you.
    Dale W.
  • Yelp
    After over 3 years of relentless research and visiting over 10 different board-certified orthopedic surgeons, podiatrists, phys...
    Justin P.
  • GatherUp
    Dr Feldman is the best! He is caring, attentive to details, responsive and a very responsible doctor! I highly recommending Dr ...
    Lian P.
  • GatherUp
    I appreciate the medical treatment.
    Nino M.
Same Day Appointments
Now Available!

Or call 877-989-9110

24 hours a day, 7 days a week