Houston Plantar Fasciitis Treatment

Plantar fasciitis is an inflammatory response caused by degenerative irritation at the insertion of the plantar fascia ligament—which is a thick band of tissue that attaches your heel bone to your toes. These ligaments act as shock absorbers that support the arch of your foot. However, too much pressure can cause the ligaments to become inflamed, and when this occurs, the inflammation often causes heel pain and stiffness. You may feel this pain most often when you take your first steps after getting out of bed or after extended periods of inactivity.

While most people associate plantar fasciitis with runners, it can be diagnosed in almost anyone regardless of their activity level. Increased pressure on the plantar fascia is thought to be the main cause of plantar fasciitis. Because of this, individuals who are overweight or obese have more risk of developing plantar fasciitis in Houston.

How is Plantar Fasciitis Diagnosed?

Dr. Jeff Hetman, our podiatrist in Houston, TX and Katy, TX, will perform a physical exam to check for pain and/or tenderness in your foot. He will first locate the exact location of your pain in order to rule out other foot conditions. Next, Dr. Hetman may ask you to perform various stretches to test the strength and health of the plantar fascia ligaments.

If the physical exam is not enough to diagnose the cause of your heel pain in Houston, Dr. Hetman might order x-rays of your foot to verify there is no stress fracture or other issue causing the pain.

Houston Plantar Fasciitis Treatment

Initial treatment in Katy and Houston for plantar fasciitis usually involves conservative approaches such as rest, ice, and avoidance of certain exercises. However, other conservative treatment methods might include the following:

  • Orthotics/padding: Custom orthotics or heel pads may be used to cushion the foot and prevent pain.
  • Stretches: Various stretches can be performed to elongate the plantar fascia ligament and relieve pain.
  • Night splint: Dr. Hetman, our Houston foot doctor, might recommend a night splint to hold your foot at a specific angle to prevent ligaments from contracting during sleep.
  • Injections: Anti-inflammatory steroid injections may be used to relieve inflammation and prevent pain.

For more severe cases of plantar fasciitis in Houston, surgery might be required. The most common surgical procedure is known as a plantar fascia release, where the surgeon releases a portion of the plantar fascia ligament from the heel bone to relieve tension and pain. Surgery is often seen as a last result after conservative approaches have failed.

Contact Dr. Hetman at Foot Specialists of Memorial, PA in Houston for plantar fasciitis diagnosis and treatment planning.