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Plantar fasciitis  is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It involves inflammation of a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot and connects your heel bone to your toes.

Plantar Fasciitis Causes and Risk Factors

Your fascia supports the muscles and arch of your foot. When it’s overly stretched, you can get tiny tears in its surface. This can bring on pain and inflammation.

RISK FACTORS

  • Are female
  • Are 40 to 60 years old
  • Are obese
  • Have flat feet or high arches
  • Have tight Achilles tendons, or “heel cords”
  • Have an unusual walk or foot position
  • Often wear high-heeled shoes
  • Spend many hours standing each day
  • Wear worn-out shoes with thin soles

 

The average plantar heel pain episode lasts longer than 6 months and it affects up to 10-15% of the population. However, approximately 90% of cases are treated successfully with conservative care. Although this condition is seen in all ages, it is most commonly expereinced during middle age. 

Females present with plantar heel slightly more commonly than males and occurs more frequently in an athletic population such as running, accounting for up to 8-10% of all running related injuries.

Characteristics/Clinical Presentation

  • Heel pain with first steps in the morning or after long periods of non-weight bearing
  • Tenderness to the anterior medial heel
  • Limited dorsiflexion and tight achilles tendon
  • A limp may be present or may have a preference to toe walking
  • Pain is usually worse when barefoot on hard surfaces and with stair climbing
  • Many patients may have had a sudden increase in their activity level prior to the onset of symptoms


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