Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammatory condition involving the soft tissues on the bottom of the heel and into the arch of the foot. The term "heel spur" was often used in the past to describe this condition. X-rays of the heel may show a beak-like spur projecting from the bottom of the heel bone, but most physicians believe that the actual source of pain is within the soft tissues.

Plantar fasciitis produces pain on the bottom of the heel, especially with weight-bearing. Typically, this pain is much worse on first getting out of bed in the morning, or when first standing after sitting for a while.

Plantar fasciitis is caused by overuse, and is often seen in people who spend long periods of time standing or walking during the day. It also can occur in runners.


TREATMENT

Conservative measures are almost always successful in controlling the heel pain of plantar fasciitis. These measures may include use of heel cushions, oral anti-inflammatory medicine, and custom-fitted shoe inserts, to relieve pressure on the inflamed soft tissues. Calf muscle stretching, specific plantar fascia stretching exercises, and night splints can help to reduce the tension on the arch ligament. Injection of cortisone is sometimes used in more persistent cases, and surgery is only occasionally needed.
Plantar Fasciitis