Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, affecting some two million patients per year. This condition frequently occurs in runners, producing pain at the bottom of the foot near the heel. When this condition is left untreated, plantar fasciosis – a chronic condition – can develop.
Questions About Your Heel Pain
- Does your heel hurt in the morning or after you have been sitting down for a long period of time?
- Do you experience pain in the heel when you step on it?
- Is running or jogging painful?
- Have you already seen more than one physician (including sports med physicians) for your heel pain?
- Have you been frustrated by the temporary pain relief provided by steroid injections?
- Would you want to start running again tomorrow if you could just get rid of this pain?
- Are you interested in a non-surgical treatment alternative for your heel pain?
If you have answered “yes” to any of these questions, then it might be time to schedule an appointment with a sports medicine physician at Hedley Orthopaedic Institute. Learn more about how sports medicine doctors at Hedley may be able to diagnose and treat heel pain without the use of surgery.
Diagnosing Plantar Fasciosis
During your first appointment at Hedley Orthopaedic Institute, your sports medicine physician may ask about your symptoms, exercise habits, goals, and past treatments. Your physician may also examine your foot, looking for a high arch, limited motion in the ankle, and testing for tenderness and pain in different areas.
In order to confirm a diagnosis of plantar fasciitis, your physician may order an x-ray or other imaging test to view the plantar fascia, heel bone, and surrounding tissues. If it appears that your chronic pain is caused by inflammation (and possibly degeneration) of the plantar fascia, then you may be diagnosed with plantar fasciosis.
Treating Plantar Fasciosis
At Hedley Orthopaedic Institute, sports medicine physicians treat plantar fasciosis using advanced, cutting-edge technologies. These non-surgical procedures include:
- Platelet-Rich Plasma Injections: Growth factors from the patient’s own blood platelets are used to restore degenerated tissues.
- Amniotic Membrane Stem Cell Injections: Growth factors, hyaluronic acid, and anti-inflammatory agents taken from donor cells in the amniotic sac are used to stimulate growth and healing
These treatments are currently at the forefront of sports medicine. With PRP and/or stem cell injections, severe heel pain isn’t just “managed.” Ideally, these therapies will provide pain relief, reduce inflammation, and help the plantar fascia regenerate. This is something that steroid injections cannot do. In addition to these non-surgical therapies, orthopaedic surgeons at Hedley Orthopaedic Institute offer surgical repair of tendons, muscle, and ligaments. Learn more.
Plantar Fasciosis Stretches
If you’ve been diagnosed with plantar fasciosis, you can take care of yourself at home with these stretches. If you have any questions about how to perform these stretches, ask your physician.
- Stand on the edge of a step with your mid-foot (not toes). With your knee straight, slowly lower your heel, stretching the gastrocnemius (part of the calf muscle). Only lower the affected leg; use both legs to stand up. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds.
- Repeat this stretch, but with your knee slightly bent. This stretches the soleus (the other part of the calf muscle).
Be sure to review any new exercise program with your doctor beforehand, so as to avoid interfering with the recovery process. These stretches can also be used for Achilles tendon-related pain.
Schedule Your Sports Med Appointment in Phoenix, Mesa or Tempe
Don’t let plantar fasciosis keep you from doing the activities you love. Schedule an appointment with a sports medicine physician in Phoenix, Mesa, or Tempe through Hedley Orthopaedic Institute. Your sports medicine physician can go over the surgical and non-surgical treatment options available to you.Contact a location near you to schedule your appointment.