"It feels like an ice pick in my heel!" That is one of the most common descriptions we hear for plantar fasciitis. Others describe it as a "stone bruise", often having pain first steps out of bed in the morning, at night after a busy day on their feet, after exercise like running or walking, or after having sat for a little while and standing up again. What is plantar fasciitis, what causes it, and why is it so painful?
The plantar fascia is a thick band of ligament like tissue that runs through the bottom of the foot from the heel bone to the front of the foot. It helps support and maintain the arch of the foot.
The plantar fascia acts like shock absorbing bowstring across the bottom of the foot helping keep the architecture of the medial arch.
What Causes Plantar Fasciitis
Any number of things can cause plantar fasciitis, from repeated minor traumas to the area, stepping on something, walking barefoot, foot type, exercise, tight calf muscle complex, and poor shoe gear choices just to name a few. The plantar fascia is stretched, causing minor tears at the insertion, which over time thickens and builds up scar tissue further exacerbating the problem. Some people try to change the way they walk to avoid the painful area, but this can cause other issues like knee, hip and back pain without relieving the painful fascia.
There are quite a few treatment options for plantar fasciitis ranging from stretching, over the counter insoles, shoe gear changes, injections (steroid, PRP, amniotic), custom molded orthotics like our 3-D printed Phits, physical therapy, and surgery including endoscopic plantar fasciotomy. Our clinic is well versed in all of these treatment options, and we work with some of the best physical therapists in the Southern Oregon region.
What should I do?
Call our office and schedule an appointment! In our experience the longer plantar fasciitis has been symptomatic, the longer it can take to recover from. Don't wait to call and schedule an appointment to see any of our fantastic physicians. Any of our staff will be happy to assist you in scheduling an appointment today!