Friday, February 7, 2014

Is heel pain always plantar fasciitis?

It is very important to understand that if you are experiencing heel pain it may not be plantar fasciitis. You may go to your local shoe store and while trying on shoes you may complain of heel pain. If you are told that it is plantar fasciitis this may be an incorrect assumption. We strongly recommend if you are experiencing any type of foot pain for a period of longer than a week than you should be evaluated by our professionals. It is not normal to have foot pain for this period of time and having a correct diagnosis is key to a quick recovery.

It is true that if you have heel pain it is more than likely plantar fasciitis in the acute setting. The problem is if not evaluated properly you could be getting the wrong advice and this may prolong your recovery.

Heel pain can present as different foot conditions such as a heel fracture, bone tumor, nerve injury, arthritic condition, or in a chronic form "Plantar Fasciosis." Imagine you were told by a friend that you have plantar fasciitis and actually had a stress fracture of the heel. You could of been evaluated initially with a digital x-ray at one of our offices and immobilized with a cam walker boot to allow the fracture to heal. Instead you treated yourself for plantar fasciitis and wondered why you were not getting better.

Our practice both at the West Ashley and Mt. Pleasant offices have state of the art diagnostic equipment. We have digital x-ray (20/20 imaging) which allows us to have a crisp, clear, image of the foot in minutes. We also have state of the art diagnostic ultrasound which allows us in the office to look inside your foot and see soft tissue inflammation and more specific anatomy of the foot. Diagnostic Ultrasound allows us to inject if needed cortisone into the fascia to accelerate healing. We have techniques which are virtually painless for our patients.

We know what is like to experience heel pain and other foot ailments. We both are avid runners and understand that our patients want to get back to being active. We believe that it is imperative that each of our patients with heel pain or other foot conditions is first properly diagnosed. We then at Carolina Foot Specialists come up with an aggressive conservative treatment plan to resolve heel and foot pain as quickly as possible. 

We will in future blogs explore Plantar Fasciosis/Plantar fasciitis in more detail and discuss our state of the art conservative and surgical options.

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