By Dr. Jim Francois, DPM, PT, PA
Have you ever felt that stabbing pain in the bottom of your heel when taking the first few steps after getting out of bed or sitting for a long time? You probably have plantar fasciitis or heel spur syndrome.
Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of a dense band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects the heel bone to the toes. It is one of the most common causes of heel pain and is usually seen in females, overweight individuals, and those whose jobs require long standing or walking on hard surfaces. It is also related to running on hard, unyielding surfaces; overtraining; improper conditioning, especially failure to stretch the Achilles tendon and hamstrings; excessive shoe wear; and wearing improper shoes that lack foot support or shock attenuation. People with very flat feet or high arches also are more prone to plantar fasciitis.
The condition occurs when the plantar fascia is strained over time beyond its normal extension, causing the soft tissue fibers of the fascia to tear or stretch at points along its length. This leads to inflammation, pain and possibly the growth of bone spur where the plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone.
Meyè bagay pou fè pou evite doulè nan talon: pote soulye ki byen pou ou( devan kou dèyè), ki gen semèl ki ka absòbe chòk.
Early treatment may involved oral or injectable anti-inflammatory medication, exercise, shoe recommendations, aping or strapping, or the use of shoe inserts or orthotic devices. Taping or strapping supports the foot, placing stressed muscles and tendons in a physiologically restful state. Physical therapy may be used in conjunction with such treatments.
Stretching of the Achiles tendon and plantar fascia is the best treatment for plantar fasciitis.
If after about six months of conservative treatment, you do not return to a previous comfortable level of function, your physician might consider surgical intervention. If surgery is necessary, it may involve the release of the plantar fascia, removal of a spur, removal of a bursa or removal of a neuroma or other soft-tissue growth. Most patients do not require surgery, which is performed in less than 8% of all heel pain cases.
I treat most of my patients conservatively, which includes, but not limited to:
- PRICE protocol (Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation)
- Tapping on the foot
- Stretching exercises of the lower leg and foot (most important)
- Night splint for continuous stretching
- Orthotics and other accommodative devices
- Ice massage
- Injection, depending on the level of discomfort
- Patient education
Just remember that not every heel pain is plantar fasciitis or heel spur syndrome. Contact your doctor or my office for an evaluation.
Jim Francois, DPM: 301 NE 167th St, North Miami Beach, FL 33162
Phone: (305) 940-0522 | Website: www.jimfrancoisdpm.com