Have you ever experienced a sharp pain in your heel for no apparent reason? One of the causes of heel pain is a condition called plantar fasciitis. It iscaused by inflammation of the plantar fascia, the tissue connecting the heel bone to the toes. The plantar fascia serves as a ‘shock absorber’ for thearch of the foot.
The patient typically experiences a stabbing sensation in the foot, especially when getting out of bed in the morning. It is not unusual for the pain to subside with movement or stretching. The pain tends to reoccur after prolonged sitting, standing, or walking.
Causes include weight, age, activity, and even gender. Certain activities that place stress on the heel (running, dancing) also play a role. Women are also more prone then men, especially when pregnant.
Too much tension in the plantar fascia can cause small tears in the tissue. When left untreated, the damage worsens and surgery may be warranted. Physical therapy plays an important role to reduce pain and help avoid surgery.
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Ernest R. Bloom, PTA CSST