What is the best way to manage plantar fasciitis?

Heel pain in adults is caused by several disorders, but the most common one is a condition called plantar fasciitis. The pain from plantar fasciitis commonly are under the heel and the traditional symptom is that the discomfort is more intense when getting out of bed first thing in the morning for those initial steps. Right after those initial steps the pain does ease somewhat, however gets worse once again as the day goes on. The plantar fascia is a long ligament underneath the bottom of the foot which is responsible for supporting the arch of the foot, so plantar fasciitis is because there is excessive weight on the arch of the foot. The main risk factors for this are tight calf muscles, being obese and having increased amounts of activity. Lower limb structural issues that adds to the load in the plantar fascia can also be a factor in raising the load.

The first approach to plantar fasciitis is pain alleviation with the use of ice after exercise and possibly the use of anti-inflammatory and pain relief drugs. Taping may also be used for the short term to help with the pain. Foot orthoses could be used to reduce the strain on the arch of the foot and correct any structural problems that might be a factor in leading to the problem. It is important to stretch the leg muscles as it really is a significant risk. Splints to wear at night could also be used to help with that stretching as needed. Strengthening the muscles that also support the arch may also be of great benefit as they take some load of the plantar fascia. In the long run, weight reduction is crucial because this truly does produce a lot of stress in the feet. In the event these kinds of approaches may not be working to well, then it's time for you to try things like shockwave therapy or corticosteroid shots. A final consideration could be surgical treatment if none of the conservative approaches work..

 

What is heel fat pad atrophy?

Pain in the heel frequently occurs and there are many different reasons for this. Plantar fasciitis is certainly the most frequent condition and is generally simple to diagnose. However, there are plenty of other reasons that aren’t as frequent and are much harder to diagnose. Among the less frequent cause is an ailment known as heel fat pad atrophy. There is a covering of fat under the heel that acts as a cushion and shock absorber while we are running or walking. Normally there’s plenty of fat there to provide that cushioning, but in some individuals, it atrophies or wastes away and it may no longer guard the heel with that shock absorption. Exactly why it occurs is not completely obvious, there is however some  atrophy of that fat pad with growing older and some simply appear to atrophy more than others at a faster rate. The key signs of this problem are increasing pain with weight-bearing beneath the heel. It is also important to rule out other conditions because they may exist concurrently.
 
The main approach to take care of heel pad atrophy is to substitute the fat which has wasted away. The easiest way is to use pads in the shoe beneath the heel, usually made of a silicone gel that has the same consistency as the natural fat, because they theoretically substitute the pad which is missing. This generally works with almost all cases of this and that is all that needs to be done. A possible problem with this approach is you need to wear the pads and you can’t do that when without shoes or in sandals without difficulty. The only other choice is a surgical procedure called augmentation where some fat is surgically inserted underneath the heel. The injected fat can come from another area of the body or maybe artificially created in the laboratory. The long term results of this type of method are not yet known, but early results from the surgery appear great.