By NEW ENGLAND PODIATRY
April 11, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Heel Pain
Your left heel is so sore that you can't wait to get off your feet. What's happening? At New England Podiatry in Boston, MA, your team of five podiatrists see case upon case of heel pain. Most often, it's an inflammatory condition called plantar fasciitis. Plantar what? Don't worry. The medical term may sound scary, but the cure usually is simple! Find out more by reading below.
Causes of heel pain
While sometimes a wart or stone bruise causes discomfort in the heel, the most common cause of heel pain remains plantar fasciitis. Entailing an overstretching of the ligament which extends from the heel bone to the base of the toes, plantar fasciitis precipitates persistent heel pain and swelling.
The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says 2 million people in the US annually receive medical treatment for heel pain traced to plantar fasciitis, making it one of the most common podiatric conditions affecting American adults. How does this condition develop? Causes vary and include:
- Overuse (running, tennis and other athletic activities)
- Overpronation, a gait problem involving an inward rotation of the foot
- Flat arches
- Poorly constructed shoes, particularly in the area of the arch
- Rigid calf muscles
Even though symptoms seem activity-related, many people suffer the most just after rising from bed in the morning or after sitting in the car for long periods of time.
What can help
At New England Podiatry, your foot doctor diagnoses plantar fasciitis with a hands-on examination, X-ray screening, and specialized imaging such as MRI. While they do offer endoscopic fasciotomy to relieve the pressure and inflammation of heel pain, most patients do well without surgery of any kind.
Your foot doctor will put together a treatment plant to address how heel pain affects you personally and to give you lasting relief. Interventions may include:
- Custom-crafted shoe inserts (orthotics) to correct gait problems and provide adequate support
- Stretching exercises, particularly for the feet and calves
- Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen
- Weight loss
- A change in footwear
- Splints (typically worn at night)
- Cortisone injections
- Shockwave treatment
- Endoscopic surgery
Need relief? Give one of our Boston offices a call!
You can start to live pain-free when the staff at New England Podiatry help you with your plantar fasciitis. For an in-person consultation on your heel pain, call one of our two Boston-area offices for an appointment. For the Chestnut-Hill office, phone (617) 232-1752, or for the Newton-Wellesley location, call (617) 630-8280.