Heel pain usually builds up gradually and gets worse over time. The pain is often severe and occurs when you place weight on your heel.
In most cases, only one heel is affected, although estimates suggest that around a third of people have pain in both heels.
The pain is usually worse first thing in the morning, or when you first take a step after a period of inactivity. Walking usually improves the pain, but it often gets worse again after walking or standing for a long time.
Some people may limp or develop an abnormal walking style as they try to avoid placing weight on the affected heel.
Heel pain is most often caused by plantar fasciitis, a condition that is sometimes also called heel spur syndrome when a spur is present. Heel pain may also be due to other causes, such as a stress fracture, tendonitis, arthritis, nerve irritation or, rarely, a cyst.
Because there are several potential causes, it is important to have heel pain properly diagnosed. A podiatrist (foot problems specialist) is able to distinguish between all the possibilities and to determine the underlying source of your heel pain.
Dr. foot offers both noninvasive and invasive treatment for heel pain
Treatment of plantar fasciitis begins with first-line strategies, which you can begin at home:
If you still have pain after several weeks, it’s better to visit your podiatrist, who may add one or more of these treatment approaches:
If the heel pain persists your foot doctor may suggest surgery. Most surgical procedures are aimed at detaching the plantar fascial ligament from its attachment into the heel bone. This may be accomplished with a small incision on the bottom of the heel or on the side of the heel.