First off, there is a lot of confusion about heel pain. Heel pain, heel spurs and plantar fasciitis are all basically the same thing. The heel spur, if you have one on your x-ray or if you think you feel one when you push on your heel, which incidentally is probably just part of your normal anatomy, isn’t causing the pain. The pain is caused from the stress on the plantar fascia which is the ligament that stretches from the heel to the ball of your foot. You get microscopic tears in that ligament where it attaches to the heel and that causes inflammation and the inflammation causes the pain.
There are two main things we treat in patients with plantar fasciitis. First we want the inflammation to decrease, then we want to take the stress off that ligament. We do that with proper shoes and an over the counter or custom insoles. We also use night splints, physical therapy and sometimes injections. For the most part over half the people are better in 2-4 weeks or sooner.
One of the major contributing factors for developing heel pain has to do with the shoes you are wearing. 90% of the patients I see come in with shoes that are too worn out, shoes that are just too flexible and simply the wrong size. If you are experiencing heel pain, don’t suffer! Call today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Brian Gale. DPM,FACFAS of Dakota Foot & Ankle Clinic at 701-255-3338.