Jogger's Heel

Do you suffer from strong heel pain? Does the pain increase while walking or running? Has medical treatment been ineffective to this point? Read the article below!

Find out about treating jogger’s heel using Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP GPS)  - click here

The most common cause of heel pain is inflammation of the plantar fascia. Many patients with plantar fasciitis have so-called heel spurs below the heel, yet it is not these spurs themselves that cause the pain. The common name of this condition is “jogger’s heel” as it is easier to say than plantar fasciitis. An orthopedist can show their patient the heel spurs on a simple X-ray photo, while the area of inflammation and pain can be viewed in a precise ultrasound exam.

The heel spur, or the calcified area of the plantar fascia visible in the X-ray (sometimes described as a bone “growth”) arises as the result of long-term strain on the plantar fascia and its specific chronic inflammation. The inflammation process often causes the heels to be very painful, particularly while walking, as each step leads to tension in the plantar fascia and irritation of the inflamed attachment to the tuber calcanei. In time, chronic inflammation leads to irreversible calcification. That is why a quick diagnosis and introduction of appropriate therapy is immeasurably essential. The diagnosis is made on the basis of symptoms, an orthopedic exam, X-ray and ultrasound. An orthopedic exam allows for the diagnosis of the cause of the plantar fasciitis and heel spur and the introduction of effective treatment.

 

Causes:

Most often, microinjuries or microstrains of the plantar fascia are responsible for the condition, and over the years they lead to worsening pain symptoms. The most common reason remains the stiffness in the calf muscles, causing:

  • heel pain
  • inflammation of the plantar fascia
  • heel spur
  • "inflammation" of the Achilles tendon – tendonitis and pain in the upper area of the heel

 

Causes in athletes:

  • Excessive physical activity of the foot (running, jumping) – overstraining of a properly-formed foot
  • Improper foot formation (flatfoot), causing improper biomechanics and strain which would never occur without foot formation pathology
  • Excessive strain resulting from playing sports on sand, which significantly increases load in the lower limbs

 

Remaining patients:

  • obesity. Overweight patients have the condition decidedly more often
  • change or increase in physical activity – without proper preparation
  • lack of proper foot arch – improper build of foot
  • stiffness, lack of elasticity and stretching of the calf muscles – improperly working calf muscle and Achilles tendon causes strain on the plantar fascia and the Achilles tendon
  • injury – fracture, contusion, sprained foot
  • use of shoes with weak cushioning while walking on a hard floor
  • pressure on heal from uncomfortable shoes
  • spending too much time on one’s heals – pressure combined with tension in the plantar fascia

 

Modern, specialized treatment

Until recently we did not have effective techniques available to regenerate tissue with chronic tendinopathy. Improvement after traditional treatment was often minimal, with long-term treatment, and the pain returned. This situation has changed to a large extent with the use of therapy injecting Platelet Rich plasma (PRP GPS) into the heel area. Conducting a procedure under Ultrasound conditions the precise application of PRP GPS in the visibly affected area, and decidedly increases the effectiveness of therapy. Injected tissues, thanks to the high concentration of natural growth factors in PRP GPS injection, are stimulated to quick biological regeneration. Pain symptoms are reduced and the plantar fascia may bear the strain on the foot while walking and running.

During the described therapy, auxiliary techniques are also used, beginning with individually chosen foot inserts, night orthosis, appropriate choice of footwear, rest, and very important, rehabilitation. Steroid injections (blockers) are generally counter indicated, as they lead to a temporary improvement after which irreversible fibrosis of the plantar fascia and loss of elasticity in the place of the post-steroid scarring. In sporadic cases, where there is a lack of improvement despite professional conservative treatment, we conduct an operation.

You will find out details connected to the individual process of treatment during a doctor’s visit, for which you may register here. 

 

Find out more about Orthokine therapy – growth factors with natural blockers of the receptor Interleukiny-1, blocking the joint inflammation process.
Find out more about PRP GPS (Platelets Rich Plasma)  with natural growth factors.
 


dr Jan Paradowski ©
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