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“Three things in life – your health, your mission, and the people you love. That’s it. “ - Naval Ravikant
Heel pain syndrome (formerly known as heel spurs) is an initially painless foot condition that occurs in the feet. Whenever you feel pain in your feet, be careful. Not all pain in your heels is the same!
With a list of symptoms list that can be numerous, it is best to consult with your orthopaedic specialist in order to discuss minimally invasive treatments. The nature of foot conditions that it is very prevalent so one symptom can have a myriad of root causes. With the right consult, you can easily determine what the root cause of your ankle pain is!
When you develop calcium deposits in your heels, which eventually accumulate to create bony protrusions right under the heel bone, a heel spur is said to have developed. Detection is best identified via scans such as an X-ray. Athletes are particularly susceptible to this condition due to their stretching of the ligaments in the region of the heel. On the other extreme, if you are overweight or obese, you will be prone to heel spurs due to the excessive pressures that are placed on the feet.
What are the symptoms of heel spurs?
As often painless accumulations in the feet, if left unattended to, heel spurs can become painful when coupled with plantar fasciitis or inflammation of the soft tissue that cushions the heel. Once there is a change in the feet, the spurs will become problematic. For this reason, prevention is often better than cure. There are a myriad of treatments for heel spurs, but at best, the ideal is to eliminate them completely via minimally invasive methods. In the orthopaedic field, the following are recommended for treating heel spurs:
Custom Made Orthotics: With these specialized insoles, the heels can be protected as they are healing.
Anti-inflammatory medications. These can either be over the counter or prescribed. These medications will help to heal the feet, particularly if you have plantar fasciitis, which will be aggravated by the presence of the spurs. Cortisone injections have also been found to be quite effective in reducing inflammation.
Physical therapy exercises such as stretches to ensure that maximum circulation is taking place in the heel region to facilitate healing.
As suitable treatments for acute conditions, minimally invasive surgeries will be ideal for those more serious conditions which can’t be treated by orthotics, anti-inflammatories or cortisone injections.
Minimally Invasive Surgery for Heel Spurs
While the majority of persons get better with non-surgical treatments, it is often the case that the remaining ten percent will need surgery. In the instance that surgery is needed, your orthopaedic surgeon will inform you of the plan to correct the condition. The surgical treatment is known as plantar fascia release.
The treatments will center on healing the plantar fascia and removing the bone spurs. There will be a pre-surgery period where you will be prepped, and you will also be prescribed the appropriate healing plan after the treatment has taken place.