Plantar Fasciitis

Stephanie Spicer, DPM -  - Podiatrist, Foot & Ankle Medicine and Surgery

Foot & Ankle Group

Stephanie Spicer, DPM

Podiatrist, Foot & Ankle Medicine and Surgery located in Olympia Fields, IL

At any given time, about 2 million Americans are suffering from plantar fasciitis. This common but painful condition can affect your quality of life and prevent you from working and exercising. Stephanie Spicer, DPM, and the team at Foot & Ankle Group in Olympia Fields, Illinois, have years of experience diagnosing and treating plantar fasciitis. To request your consultation today, call the office or use the online scheduling tool.

Plantar Fasciitis Q & A

What is plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is a common health problem characterized by sharp, shooting pain at the bottom of your heel or in your arch.

Your plantar fascia is a ligament, a thick band of tough tissue, that runs from your heel to your toes. Whenever you take a step, go for a jog, or climb a flight of stairs, your plantar fascia acts like a bowstring, encouraging balance and support.

Your plantar fascia experiences wear-and-tear throughout your life. This causes small tears to form in the ligament. When these tears become inflamed, it causes pain and irritation.

What are the symptoms of plantar fasciitis?

The most common symptom associated with plantar fasciitis is a sharp shooting or stabbing pain at the bottom of the heel or in the arch. Pain caused by plantar fasciitis is usually the worst first thing in the morning. You can also experience pain after exercising or standing for long periods.

Who is at risk of developing plantar fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis can strike at any time. Things that increase your risk of developing plantar fasciitis include:

  • Having flat feet
  • Having a high arch
  • Being overweight
  • Working on your feet

You’re also more likely to experience plantar fasciitis if you participate in certain physical activities. For example, long-distance running, ballet, and aerobic dance place more than the usual stress on your plantar fascia, increasing your risk of inflammation and pain.

How is plantar fasciitis diagnosed?

To diagnose plantar fasciitis, your Foot & Ankle Group provider examines your heels and feet, reviews your medical history, and asks questions about your symptoms.

Your provider also gently presses on your foot to check for areas of tenderness. Pinpointing where your pain is can help determine its cause. If your provider suspects your heel pain is the result of a stress fracture or a problem other than plantar fasciitis, they may order X-rays.

How is plantar fasciitis treated?

The team at Foot & Ankle Group usually recommends conservative treatments to ease heel or arch pain caused by plantar fasciitis. Depending on your individual needs, they could recommend:

  • Custom-made orthotics (shoe inserts)
  • Injection therapy
  • Daily stretching and ice therapy
  • Night splints

If your heel pain doesn’t get better, the team might recommend surgery.

Don’t let plantar fasciitis prevent you from living an active, mobile lifestyle. Dr. Spicer and the team at Foot & Ankle Group treat plantar fasciitis for the long-term and work to find the underlying cause so it’s not recurrent. Request an appointment at Foot & Ankle Group today by calling the office or using the online scheduling tool.