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Growth Plate

The growth plates are the areas near each end of the long bones in children and adolescents where bone growth occurs. Also known as the epiphyseal plate or physis, this developing tissue determines how long and wide the bone will be when fully grown.

During late adolescence, when growth stops, the growth plates close and are replaced by solid bone. Until then, the growth plate is relatively weak and vulnerable to injury. An injury that would cause a sprain in an adult can cause a growth plate injury in a child.

Proper treatment of an injury to a growth plate is essential to ensure normal bone growth.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Current as of October 17, 2013

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: October 17, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.