Heel Pain

Premier Podiatry

Board Certified Podiatrist Foot & Ankle Surgeon located in Normal, IL & Pontiac, IL

Your heel takes a lot of pressure with every step you take, so it’s no surprise that heel pain is one of the most common problems treated by podiatrists. Board-certified podiatrist Dr. Scott O’Connor has years of experience determining the underlying cause of heel pain, creating customized treatments, and helping patients find relief. With three offices in Normal, Pontiac, and Eureka, Illinois, Premier Podiatry you can get the care you need to prevent your heel pain from worsening. To learn more, schedule an appointment by calling the nearest office or using online booking.

Heel Pain Q & A

What causes heel pain?

You can develop heel pain from a stress fracture, heel spur, arch problems, or running on hard or uneven surfaces. Wearing shoes that don’t properly cushion your heel or support your foot can also lead to heel pain.

Most patients, however, develop heel pain due to plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis.

What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis, the leading cause of heel pain, is an inflammation of the band of connective tissue (plantar fascia) that connects your heel to your toe. This strong tissue supports the arch and absorbs shock.

Although the plantar fascia can support a great deal of pressure, excessive stress and repetitive activities cause irritation, damage, and inflammation. A few causes of plantar fasciitis include:

  • Running in shoes that don’t support your arch
  • Tight Achilles tendon
  • Overuse injury
  • Being overweight

What is Achilles tendonitis?

The Achilles tendon is a band of connective tissue that connects your calf muscle to your heel bone. Its primary job is to raise your heel when you walk.

Achilles tendonitis, or inflammation of the tendon, most often develops from repetitive stress, especially when you suddenly increase the length of time or intensity of your activities.

Repetitive activities cause micro-injuries of the tendon. When your body doesn’t have time to repair the injury, progressive damage and inflammation develop. Untreated Achilles tendonitis may worsen progressively, causing degeneration of the tendon.

How is heel pain treated?

Dr. O’Connor uses a range of conservative, regenerative, and surgical treatments, depending on the cause and severity of your heel pain.

Conservative treatments

These include therapies like rest, immobilization, physical therapy, orthotics, and customized shoes to support your heel. Dr. O’Connor may also recommend kinesiology taping, temporarily modifying your activities, or corticosteroid injections to relieve inflammation and pain.

K-Laser® therapy

Dr. O’Connor offers K-Laser therapy, which uses specific wavelengths of laser light to boost circulation, reduce inflammation, and promote healing.

Regenerative treatments

Dr. O’Connor stays up-to-date with advanced regenerative treatments proven to promote healing. As a result, his patients have access to cutting-edge platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and AmnioFix® injections. Both contain growth factors that reduce inflammation, stimulate synthesis of new cells and tissues, and repair soft tissues.

Surgery

As an experienced foot surgeon, Dr. O’Connor is uniquely qualified to surgically remove damaged tissues and repair the plantar fascia or Achilles tendon.

To schedule an appointment and get relief from your heel pain, call the nearest Premier Podiatry office in Normal, Pontiac, or Eureka, Illinois or book an appointment online today.