We are a private practice physiotherapy and sports injury clinic in Galway that specialises in treating heel pain. Heel pain or plantar fasciitis is the result of collagen degeneration of the plantar fascia at the origin (base of the foot), the heel, and the surrounding structures.
The plantar fascia plays an important role in the normal biomechanics of the foot. The fascia itself is important in providing support for the arch and providing shock absorption. Despite the diagnosis containing the segment “itis,” this condition is notably characterized by an absence of inflammatory cells.
There are many different sources of pain in the plantar heel besides the plantar fascia. Therefore, the term “Plantar Heel Pain” serves best to include a broader perspective when discussing this and related injuries.
Causes of plantar heel pain are often due to a repetitive strain causing micro-tears of the plantar fascia but can occur as a result of trauma or other multifactorial causes. There are many risk factors which contribute to plantar heel pain including but not limited to:
The condition can be disabling if not appropriately managed. An important tool is education:
Common treatments include: stretching and strengthening of the gastrocnemius/soleus/plantar fascia; orthotics; ultrasound; iontophoresis; night splints and joint mobilization or manipulation.
These treatments can be provided by your physiotherapist. It is important to get a correct diagnosis before starting into exercises. Your physio will give you exercises specifically designed to treat the condition without putting you at risk of injury aggravation. Here at West Coast Physio we are more than happy to talk to you about your injury and kickstart you on the road to recovery.