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Heel Pain Specialist

Arcadia Foot and Ankle

Podiatry located in Scottsdale, AZ, Mesa, AZ & Sun City, AZ

Heel pain affects around 10% of Americans today, and up to 8% of those sufferers have disabling heel pain. Whether heel pain happens every day or just once in a while, it’s inconvenient and aggravating. Fortunately, Arcadia Foot and Ankle has solutions that help you heal and return to normal activity quickly. The experienced podiatrists are here to help at two offices in Scottsdale and additional locations in Sun City and Mesa, Arizona, so use the online scheduler or call the office nearest you today.

Heel Pain Q & A

Why does my heel hurt?

There are several possible reasons you’re having heel pain, including common issues such as: 

Plantar fasciitis

Most heel pain comes from plantar fasciitis. In plantar fasciitis, the ligament that connects the heel and toes develops a number of microtears. 

These tiny tissue tears happen when you place excessive strain on the ligament. It’s a common cause of heel pain among athletes. Plantar fasciitis also occurs frequently in obese and sedentary adults.

Heel spurs

Another possible cause of heel pain is heel spurs, which are tiny calcium hooks on the bottom of your heel. Plantar fasciitis and heel spurs often occur together. In these cases, the plantar fasciitis is usually the root cause of the heel pain. In about 5% of the cases, heel spurs cause the pain.

Achilles tendon damage

Achilles tendon damage, such as Achilles tendinitis or tendon rupture, can cause severe pain. While plantar fasciitis and heel spur pain typically happens on the bottom of the foot, heel pain related to Achilles tendon damage usually occurs in the back of the heel. 

Some other causes of heel pain can include Haglund’s deformity (pump bump), Sever’s disease, stress fractures, bursitis, and bone infections. 

How do you treat heel pain?

Heel pain treatment varies by cause and seriousness. Most heel pain improves significantly with nonoperative care, including: 

  • Oral or topical drugs
  • Ice packs (20 minutes per hour)
  • Physical therapy
  • Immobilization such as bracing
  • Night splints that lengthen your plantar fascia
  • Custom orthotics
  • Extracorporeal Pulse-Activated Technology (EPAT®) 
  • Injections

Although it’s rare, stubborn heel pain sometimes requires surgical intervention like plantar fascia release, in which your doctor releases the plantar fascia from the heel bone. The Arcadia Foot and Ankle team of podiatric surgeons often performs this type of procedure using cutting-edge minimally invasive techniques.

How can I prevent heel pain?

The Arcadia Foot and Ankle team offers customized advice to help you prevent chronic heel pain. Often, making small adjustments in your life, like wearing custom orthotics, doing daily foot exercises, and swapping your shoes for a better-fitting pair, can help you avoid heel pain long-term. 

Are your heels hurting? You don’t need to live with that terrible sharp pain! Call the Arcadia Foot and Ankle office in your area or use the online booking tool to set up your visit with an experienced podiatrist now.