If you are suffering from heel pain, chances are it’s associated with plantar fasciitis. This condition refers to the inflammation and swelling of a tough band of tissue located across the bottom of the foot. The plantar fascia connects the heel bone to the base of the toes.
People with plantar fasciitis experience severe and stabbing pain as soon as they step out of bed in the morning. Pain may also be present when standing after long periods of sitting. Plantar fasciitis is incredibly common in runners. However, being overweight, female, and wearing shoes that lack adequate support also increases your risk of developing this condition.
The most common cause of heel pain or plantar fasciitis is overuse. In rare cases, this condition may also develop after an injury. The typical purpose of the plantar fascia is to absorb shock and support the foot arch. However, when tension becomes excessive, the fascia suffers very small tears. Constant stretching and tearing lead to pain and inflammation of the fascia.
If heel pain persists for longer than two to three weeks despite at-home treatment, you need to see a doctor. Schedule an appointment immediately if heel pain prevents you from walking or putting weight on your foot, if the pain is very severe and arrive suddenly, or if your heel is red or swollen.
Your doctor will perform a review of your medical history, an interview to learn more about your symptoms, and a physical exam to assess heel pain. X-rays or other imaging tests may also be performed. Once your doctor determines the cause and severity of heel pain, he can work with you to develop a treatment plan. Treatment options may include plantar fascia stretching or physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, night splints (i.e. splints that stretch the calves and arches during sleep), and custom-made orthotics or shoe inserts.
We participate with most local and many national insurance plans. However, it is your responsibility to understand whether your insurance has limits on the doctors you can see or the services you can receive. If you provide complete and accurate information about your insurance, we will submit claims to your insurance carrier and receive payments for services. Depending on your insurance coverage, you may be responsible for co-payments, co-insurance, or other deductible amounts. Please contact our billing office or call your insurance carrier should you have any questions.
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