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Heel spurs

Plantar Fasciitis / Plantar Fasciosis

The terms ‘heel spurs’, ‘plantar fasciitis’ and ‘plantar fasciocis’ are often used interchangeably even though they are not the same complaint. The similarity, and therefore the confusion, between the images is the involvement of the plantar fascia. Under the foot runs a tendon leaf, plantar fascia. This tendon runs from the bottom of the heel bone (os calcaneus) to the toes. It is a strong tendon blade and supports the entire foot.

A heel spur is a bony growth at the attachment of the tendon leaf to the heel bone. This growth is caused by prolonged pulling forces of the tendon leaf on the heel bone and does not itself cause pain. Heel spurs can be caused by a degenerative process and should not be a problem. However, it can also be accompanied by plantar fasciitis, which does cause pain. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tendon leaf at the attachment to the heel bone due to excessive pulling forces.

Symptoms consistent with plantar fasciitis

  • sharp/stabbing/dull pain in the bottom of the heel
  • sometimes arch pain
  • starting pain (increase in pain when standing after sitting or lying down for a long time)
  • pain when walking or standing
  • sometimes a thickened heel cushion

Causes of Plantar Fasciitis / Plantar Fasciosis

Causes for the pulling forces that cause plantar fasciitis can be, for example:

  • Pes planus (flat foot)
  • Pes cavus (high instep and high arch)
  • tight calf muscles and/or plantar fascia
  • abnormal gait of the feet when walking
  • abnormal position of the ankle
  • overload due to prolonged standing
  • wrong footwear

How can you treat plantar fasciitis?

At Skin Therapist NL Almere, the physiotherapist can conduct an examination to make the diagnosis and to draw up a treatment. Treatment can be a lengthy process involving multiple agents. The tendon leaf can be treated so that it improves in quality and structure. Various treatment techniques can be used for this, including massage and stretching techniques. Initially, pain relief will be the most important treatment goal, but after that the physiotherapist will also work preventively by means of exercise therapy to hopefully prevent a recurrence. The physiotherapist can provide information and advice to tackle plantar fasciitis from several sides.

If physiotherapy is not effective enough, the physiotherapist at Huidtherapeut NL Almere can guide you in looking for other/additional options.

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