If you cringe in pain as you take your first steps each day because of plantar fasciitis, you’re far from alone. An estimated 10 percent of people in the U.S. experience bouts of heel pain, and this condition is the most common reason related medical care is sought. It’s especially common in runners, but wearing unsupportive shoes, carrying excess body weight, and having feet that overpronate all increase your risk.
To get support regarding your own plantar fasciitis issues, contact our office, or book an appointment from our website. In the meantime, the following information can help you gain understanding around treatment options and whether or not surgery might make sense.
Determining your ideal treatment
Before you and your doctor can decide whether surgery is a reasonable option for you, you’ll need to be properly diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. From there, a less invasive treatment plan will likely be established before surgery is considered.
Less invasive treatment options include:
- AmnioFix® injections
- K-Laser® therapy
- Kinesiology taping
- Non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory medication, for reduced pain and inflammation
- Orthotic shoes
- Steroid injections, which minimizes pain for about one month
- Physical therapy, including helpful exercises you can do at home
- Shock-wave therapy, which uses sound waves to stimulate blood flow
- Tenex procedure, which involves a small cut to remove tissue
In many cases, a combination of treatments works best. You may have injections while keeping up with home exercises, for example, or take medications but also wear specialty shoes.
Most people respond well to more conservative treatment options for plantar fasciitis, but a small percentage continue to experience chronic pain that can be disabling and interfere with their quality-of-life. If this is the case for you, you may be a good candidate for surgery. Your doctor may recommend surgery if the anticipated benefits outweigh the downsides, such as a lengthy recovery time, scarring, and postoperative complications.
Criteria for plantar fasciitis surgery
In order to be a good candidate for surgical treatment for plantar fasciitis, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:
- Have symptoms for at least nine months, regardless of other treatments
- Be participating in daily homecare treatments, such as doctor-approved stretches
- Have a solid understanding of the benefits versus risks of surgery
- Be in generally good health and able to physically tolerate anesthesia and surgery
- Have the ability to take time off your feet or in a brace for recovery, which may take as long as 6-10 weeks
To learn more about plantar fasciitis, including noninvasive and surgical treatment options, contact our office. We would love to help you find your way to greater comfort.