Cortisone-steroids are a strong anti-inflammatory. They are injected directly into the heel bone and will work almost immediately. The injection itself can be very painful and in many patients more injections are needed as pain relief usually only lasts up to 6 weeks. This type of treatment does not address the biomechanical cause of the problem.
Shockwave therapy is very common in the USA. The specialist targets therapeutic shockwaves to the affected heel area.The treatment needs to be repeated for 3 to 4 months to be fully effective. The shockwaves stimulate a healing response in the inflamed plantar fascia tissue.
Surgery is seldom required and only in cases whereby everything else has failed. The surgeon makes an incision into the ligament, partially cutting the plantar fascia to release the excess tension. If bone spur is present, it will be removed.
Before seeking help from a doctor or specialist, you may want to consider some self-treatment options. The treatment suggestions below are well researched and have proven to provide substantial heel pain relief, especially if the problem has only come about in recent weeks or months.
Minimise walking and standing on your feet, giving the inflamed tissue under the foot a chance to recover. The body is capable of healing itself, provided you give it some rest. Avoid any running, sports, walking long distances etc
Anti-inflammatories such ibuprofen will help reduce the inflammation of the plantar fascia, thus providing (temporarily) pain relief. You can also apply an ice pack directly onto the heel for about 5-10 minutes. This will help cool down the inflammation and give provide some relief.
Many people have tightness in their calf muscles and achilles tendons (at the back of the heel). This tightness hampers your natural walking pattern and places tension on the plantar fascia. Flexible foot and leg muscles are important in the treatment and prevention of most foot complaints. Read more about these exercises here..
Orthotic shoe inserts are recommended by most medical practitioners, as part of an effective heel pain treatment regime. This is because orthotics address the cause of heel complaints: i.e. incorrect foot biomechanics. Developed by podiatrists, Footlogics orthotics support the arches and correct faulty foot mechanics. As a result, the insoles will release the tension placed on the plantar fascia, allowing the inflamed tissue to heal itself. Today, Footlogics orthotics are used by podiatrists, chiropodists and physiotherapists across the UK and have helped many thousands of heel pain sufferers.