According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one million Americans are seen by doctors for symptoms of plantar fasciitis each year. Plantar fasciitis occurs when the ligament that runs from the heel bone to the base of the tones becomes inflamed; the inflammation is was usually causes the heel pain. Plantar fasciitis can occur through obesity, having too high or too low of an arch, and participation of activities where your foot or heel hits the ground repeatedly such as running. Some ways to reduce the stress placed on the ligament include: icing, taping the arch and bottom of the foot, stretching the lower extremities, wearing orthotics, and taking anti-inflammatories. If those methods do not do the trick, cortisone injections, shockwave therapy, and extracorporeal pulse activation therapy can also be used.
Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, visit one of our podiatrists of New England Foot and Ankle Specialists. Our doctors can treat your heel pain as well as any other foot or ankle condition.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis refers to heel and arch pain caused by an inflammation of the connective tissues on the bottom of the foot.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?
- Ill-fitting shoes
- Weight change
- Excessive running
- Non-supportive shoes
How Can It Be Treated?
- Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices.
- Shockwave therapy – sends sound waves to the areas where pain is experience. Requires multiple sessions. This is used for very persistent cases of plantar fasciitis.
- Ultrasound-guided technique with steroid injections into the plantar fascia. This is from a relatively new and small study, but was shown to be effective in most cases treated.
New Studies on Treatment
According to groundbreaking treatment option studies, Luca M. Sconfienza, M.D. says that ultrasound with steroid injections was effective in over 95% of cases that involve plantar fasciitis. This process involves anesthesia and is a single process, out-patient treatment that was discovered to be highly effective. Luca M. Sconfienza M.D. presented her study at an annual meeting for the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). Be sure to speak with your podiatrist about different methods that can be used, as well as finding out what treatment options they offer.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Reading, MA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.
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