What are My Treatment Options for Heel Pain?

Oct 2, 2019 by

Experiencing heel pain can severely impact your life, from walking to working out, you will need to find relief to get on with your daily activities. There are a few different heel injuries you can suffer from, so if you do experience any of these, make sure to see a heel pain doctor in Scottsdale as soon as possible to receive proper treatment.

Common Heel Issues & How to Treat Them

From plantar fasciitis to bursitis, there are a few different heel injuries that are very common.

What is Plantar Fasciitis

The most common heel injury is plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is the structure that supports the natural arch of the foot. This is a thick band of connective tissue, and when irritated it can be extremely painful and even keep you off of your feet for weeks at a time. Symptoms of plantar fasciitis include a stabbing sensation in the heel or along the foot, which tends to worsen over time. Inflammation and irritation are also strong signs of small tears in the tissue. The causes of plantar fasciitis included repetitive stress on the heel and excessive tension.

If you are experiencing plantar fasciitis, you should see a podiatrist to be evaluated and receive the proper treatment. At home, you can start treatment with rest, ice application and medication. This can sometimes do the trick, but if the pain worsens, a splint might be used. For extremely painful and difficult cases, surgery will be needed by a trusted foot surgeon.

What is Bursitis

Bursitis of the heel is another painful condition that is very common. Located in the back of the ankle is the retrocalcaneal bursa and when this is irritated, it will cause pain in the back of the heel, which could worsen over time, just like plantar fasciitis. Symptoms include swelling, inflammation, and arthritis. This is usually caused by intense workouts or injury while walking, running, or jumping. If the back of the heel tends to be red and warm, it could be linked to Achilles tendinitis.

When you are experiencing bursitis, you will want to stay away from certain activities to avoid worsening the injury. The first form of treatment is to try to rest your heel and apply ice along with possible medication. Custom shoes are also available to help. To strengthen your heel and help with flexibility, physical therapy might also be an option. If the pain continues and even worsens over time, a cast along with surgery might be needed. Before deciding on any treatment options, seek the recommendation of a podiatrist.

What is Achilles Tendinitis

Achilles tendinitis is also another very common heel injury, just like bursitis and plantar fasciitis. The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon that runs from the calf muscles to the heel bone. This tendon can rupture, causing it to become inflamed and even degenerate. Symptoms include a burning and painful sensation in the heel and also tenderness. This is caused by stress, overuse, and oftentimes the lack of stretching before a physical activity. Constant stress can actually cause micro tears in the tendon.

Achilles tendinitis can range from minor to severe. Those with minor conditions should try rest, ice, and medications while elevating the heel throughout the day. However, more severe conditions will require surgery. Keep in mind that the more severe the condition, the more aggressive treatment is needed.

When Aggressive Treatment is Needed

When experiencing any pain in the heel, start with resting at home. Speak with a podiatrist to be properly diagnosed to know what treatment options are best for you. Depending on the severity of your condition and other factors like your activity level, you may benefit from options such as shock wave therapy, stem cell therapy, and PRP injections.

When your condition is severe enough, you may need additional treatment such as non-surgical procedures or even surgery. Keep in mind that surgery can be a risky treatment option that will usually require you to be off of your feet for at least a few weeks.

However, there are non-surgical options available that are more affordable and require less recovery time. Such treatment options are simple procedures that will produce cartilage, helping to relieve pain and discomfort. Shockwave Therapy is a treatment option, with each session taking only about 5 to 10 minutes. Minimal maintenance is needed after shockwave therapy and the recovery time is much quicker than other treatment methods. There are virtually no risks or side effects with shockwave therapy and the results are seen immediately. In fact, over 80 percent of patients have reported being pain-free after just 4 weeks. PRP injection is another popular option and is extremely effective for heel injuries. This promotes natural healing of the tissue and is a much easier process than surgery, delivering remarkable results.

The Arizona Foot and Ankle Center Can Help

At the Arizona Foot and Ankle Center of Arizona, we offer specialized treatments such as non-surgical options for common heel injuries. To find relief from heel pain, the Arizona Foot and Ankle Center offers stem cell treatments, shock wave therapy and platelet rich plasma treatments using only the finest medical and surgical care. Our staff at the Foot and Ankle Center of Arizona will provide you with the finest foot and ankle care to get you back on your feet.

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