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Plantar fasciitis is an overuse injury that causes heel pain.
The plantar fascia is a band of fibrous tissue that:
Plantar fasciitis occurs when you strain the ligament and cause tiny tears.
Causes of this injury can include:
Wearing shoes that fit well is one of the best ways to prevent plantar fasciitis.
You can also wear orthotics to support your feet if the shape of your foot is causing the trouble.
Sometimes tight calf muscles or Achilles' tendons can worsen the problem and cause complications. So, be sure to stretch before and after activity.
Most people with plantar fasciitis feel symptoms such as pain in their heel. It feels like a dull, aching pain that can sometimes become sharp or stabbing.
Pain often occurs when first getting out of bed, or when standing after sitting for a long time. It may get better after you walk a little, but worsen later in the day.
You may also have tenderness in the heel.
To diagnose plantar fasciitis, your doctor will do a physical exam to inspect your feet and see how you stand and walk.
He or she will ask about your:
You won't need x-rays or other imaging tests unless your doctor suspects you have a bone problem, such as a stress fracture.
When you first have pain, treatment and care for plantar fasciitis involve staying off your feet and resting your heel.
Other plantar fasciitis treatments include:
You may need physical therapy to strengthen the muscles of your feet and legs and to improve flexibility.
Exercises focus on:
If physical therapy and rehab don't help manage your plantar fasciitis, your doctor may suggest a cortisone shot.
Only a small number of people will need surgery to correct plantar fasciitis. Your doctor will likely try nonsurgical treatments or rehab for six months or more before thinking about surgery.
The main types of plantar fasciitis surgery include:
Recovering from overuse injuries takes time. Be sure to take care of your feet when they become irritated to avoid prolonged pain and injury.