Heel pain is something we treat on a daily basis, so both of our doctors have many years of experience in this condition! It’s a very common foot problem, and we are dedicated to helping our patients be relieved of their discomfort so they can return to all of their regular activities.
One of the most common causes of heel pain is a condition called plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a fan-shaped ligament that connects the heel bone to the ball of the foot. It is narrow at the heel and gets wider as it spans the length of the arch. Inflammation of this band occurs as a result of stress and strain on the arch. Pain is worst in the morning with the first few steps and throughout the day after long periods of rest. This is due to the ligament becoming short and tight when at rest, then stretching as walking resumes. Oftentimes, the pain lessens as the ligament stretches, but does not fully resolve.
It is imperative that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist so that x-rays can be taken and other causes of heel pain, such as nerve entrapment, stress fracture, bursitis and sprain, can be ruled out. Once diagnosis is confirmed by a physical exam, the goals of treatment are two-fold: to relieve inflammation causing the pain and to help reduce the risk of recurrence in the future. Any number of treatments can be used including oral anti-inflammatories, orthotics, shoe changes, steroid injections, night splints and physical therapy.