One of the biggest problems with mild to moderate heel pain is that patients tend to ignore it and continue with their normal activities, which usually worsens the problem. Heel pain arises from many possible causes, so it’s important to seek early treatment from Dr. Jeffrey Roith and Dr. Sarah Russell at Kansas City Institute of Podiatry. They’re experts at determining the cause, then providing customized treatment to prevent future problems. To schedule an appointment, use online booking or call the office in Overland Park, Kansas.
Plantar fasciitis occurs when a ligament, the plantar fascia, is inflamed. The plantar fascia connects your heel to the front of your foot, where it’s responsible for supporting your arches and absorbing pressure.
You’re most likely to develop plantar fasciitis over time as overpronation (turning your foot inward) or repetitive and high-impact activities gradually damage the tissue.
Many patients with plantar fasciitis also have a heel spur, which is an abnormal buildup of bone. Heel spurs develop in response to local inflammation due to a damaged plantar fascia. An inflamed Achilles tendon can also lead to bone spurs on your heel.
Calluses are areas of thick, hardened skin that typically occur on the bottom of your foot. Heel calluses form when one metatarsal bone is longer than the others.
The metatarsal bones are the long bones in the middle of your foot; one metatarsal connects each toe to bones in the back of your foot. When one is too long, it hits the ground with more force, which eventually forms a painful callus.
A heel fissure, or a cracked heel, develops from dry skin. The problem worsens when you wear sandals or open-back shoes, gain weight, or there’s friction from your shoes.
Most patients can treat heel fissures by applying moisturizer, but if an open sore develops, schedule an appointment with the team at Kansas City Institute of Podiatry.
Haglund’s deformity is a bony enlargement on your heel bone that develops when your Achilles tendon is irritated and inflamed.
As the enlarged area rubs against your shoes, it becomes red, swollen, and painful. It may also cause bursitis, an inflammation of fluid-filled sacs where the Achilles tendon attaches to the heel bone.
In most patients, the doctors treat heel pain with conservative measures, such as temporarily taking a break from activities causing the problem, exercises to stretch tendons and ligaments, and orthotic inserts for your shoes to cushion and protect your heel.
Depending on the cause and severity of your heel pain, your doctor may need to remove thickened tissues or bony spurs.
If you have heel pain, call Kansas City Institute of Podiatry or book an appointment online.