If I have heel pain, does that mean I have plantar fasciitis?

While plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, don’t assume that if you have heel pain you have plantar fasciitis.  There can be other causes for heel pain.  Other causes for heel pain are stress fractures, arthritis and Achilles tendinitis, bursitis and nerve entrapments.  The only way to know what is causing your heel pain is to have it examined by a podiatrist.  X-rays will be taken of your foot and the source of your heel pain will be identified.

However, plantar fasciitis is the most common cause for heel pain.  The plantar fascia is the band of tissue (ligament) that connects your heel bone to your toes.  The ligament runs along the bottom of your foot.  The ligament can become inflamed and the resulting pain can make walking and exercising difficult to impossible.   The inflammation is usually caused by an instability, or excessive flattening of your arch.  It can be aggravated by:

  • Standing for long periods of time on your feet
  • Repetitive sports like running
  • Being overweight
  • Having flat feet or high arches
  • Wearing the wrong shoes

Treatment for plantar fasciitis can include minor changes like wearing a night splint, stretching exercises, wearing custom-molded orthotics, to more aggressive treatments like a minimally invasive procedure called cryoanalgesia.

The first step is identifying the cause of your pain.  Call our office today to set up an appointment.  You shouldn’t have to live with pain.  Let the experts at Kansas City Foot and Ankle diagnose the source of your pain and develop a treatment plan that is right for you.