A very common rearfoot injury is heel pain caused by Plantar
Fasciitis. This is caused by either inflammation or the
thickening of the plantar fascia (the band of connective tissue
that runs along the bottom of your foot from your heel to you
toes). This problem is considered a chronic injury because it
is caused by the continual overstretching of the plantar fascia,
which causes tears in the fiber and thus pain. Common
symptoms are pain under or along the side of the heel with
the worst pain being felt first thing in the morning.
Getting your pain under control is the first priority. This
is often achieved thru rest, icing, physical therapy, stretching
and anti-inflammatory medications. More severe pain can be
helped with cortisone injections right into the area if pain
and inflammaton. Restoring stability to the arches is the
main course of preventative treatment. Proper fitting shoes
and custom corrective foot orthotics help maintain the
stability of the foot and prevent reoccurence of Plantar Fasciitis
once the pain is relieved. More severe cases may require
Another common cause of rearfoot pain is Achilles
Tendonitis. This occurs when the tendon that runs from the
back of the calf to the heel (Achilles) is strained, causing
tears. Rest, icing, anti-inflammatory medication, and
stretching and strengthening exercises are the starting point of
treatment. More severe cases may require ultrasound
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome is a painful condition seen mostly
in active adults. This occurs when the tibial nerve is
compressed causing shooting pain, burning or tingling
sensations, or even numbness, along the bottom of the foot or
ankle. Early detection and treatment is critical to
avoid permanent nerve damage. Orthotics and proper shoes are
very important for taking pressure off of the nerve.
Surgery may be required for more severe cases.
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