Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common orthopedic conditions relating to the foot. It is when the thick tissue on the bottom of the foot (the plantar fascia) becomes inflamed and irritated, making it difficult to walk. This is most often the result of repeated episodes of minor but recurring injury, such as with frequent running or long periods of standing. The pain can be located in the heel area of the foot or in the arch. It is often worse in the morning due to stiffness of the tissue, and also becomes worse after long periods of walking. The pain often decreases with rest.
Your chiropodist will exam your foot for swelling, redness and tenderness of the area and perform a full biomechanical assessment and gait analysis.
Treatment can include stretching exercises, foot mobilization therapy (FMT), taping and strapping, rest, proper or custom footwear, and possibly the use of a splint, custom orthotics and anti-inflammatory medications. Further treatment may include steroid injections into the sole of the foot, or in certain severe and chronic situations, a surgical procedure may be performed that releases the plantar fascia.
Depending on the severity of the plantar fasciitis and other health factors, treatment can span a matter of weeks to several months and may involve a combination of management approaches before symptoms improve.Patients should be wary of remedies promising “fast fixes” by unregulated entrepreneurs or non-foot specialists.
Foot pain can continue, and progress into a severe condition that affects the ability to walk. Eventually, permanent damage to the plantar fascia or surrounding nerves may occur.