What is Endoscopic Plantar Fasciotomy?
Endoscopic plantar fasciotomy (EPF) is a recent advancement in foot surgery for the correction of Heel Spur Syndrome and Plantar Fasciitis. This new technique allows for a quicker recovery and a faster return to normal activity. The procedure involves an outpatient surgical visit and utilizes specially designed instruments that allow the surgeon to directly visualize the foot structures on a video screen while only making two small incisions on the foot.
How is this procedure different?
In classic heel spur surgery a large open incision is made to sever the tight ligament in the arch known as the plantar fascia and to remove the bone spur which has formed within this fascia where it attaches to the heel bone. The heel spur is formed over a long period of time because of constant pulling. The injury produces inflammation, pain, and inability to bear weight on the heel comfortably. The inflammation stimulates spur formation. The spur is a symptom of the inflammation and is not the cause of the heel pain. In EPF it is not necessary to remove the heel spur in order to cure the pain.
Am I a candidate for this surgical procedure?
If you have failed to obtain complete relief of heel pain symptoms with the use of conservative treatment such as: orthotics, stretching, oral anti-inflammatory medication, cortisone injection, or physical therapy, then you may benefit from EPF.
What are the expected results of this procedure?
Most patients return to their regular shoes in 7-10 days. Most return to work after the first week, and return to their normal activities by the end of the third week. Everyone heals slightly differently. Other factors such as age, weight, and occupation can contribute to healing times.