What is causing my heel pain?

Hi, I’m Dr. Michael Tompkins. I’m an orthopedic surgeon at TOC and I’m foot and ankle trained. So I have a lot of patients that come to my clinic with a lot of heel pain. Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate posterior heel pain or pain on the bottom of your heel. For patients with pain on the bottom of their heel, this is most likely coming from plantar fascia type pain. If the pain is on the back of the heel, this is most likely coming from your Achilles tendon where to insert on the bone. 

It could be Plantar Fasciitis

So if you’re suffering from heel pain, the most common cause is usually plantar fasciitis. This is where you have pain on the bottom of the heel right where the origin of the plantar fascia starts on the heel.

Treating Plantar Fasciitis

There’s lots of non-operative treatment remedies for plantar fasciitis. These include gentle stretches of the toe, which would be the plantar fascia stretch, stretching out the calf muscle a couple of times a day, taking anti-inflammatories like Motrin or Aleve or Naprosyn or Ibuprofen, utilizing over the counter inserts in your shoes that can be really maximum cushion or gel heel cups, and getting nice supportive shoes is also beneficial. 

A Foot and Ankle Specialist can help

So if the home remedies do not work then you can come visit me in the clinic and we can evaluate your foot and ankle and decide on the next management, which could include most likely some physical therapy. Surgical management occurs in about 5% to 10% of people, and usually it requires at least one year of non-surgical management. However, most people do get better with non-surgical treatment options for plantar fasciitis.

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