In the month of April alone, there are nearly 90 different organized road races in the Greater Phoenix area. The most popular race, Pat’s Run typically gets 30,000+ runners. With all these feet hitting the ground, it’s inevitable to see a multitude of different running-related injuries. So, in this post we are going to look into plantar fasciitis/fasciosis, or the pain on the bottom of the heel or arch of the foot.
What is Plantar Fasciitis/Fasciosis?
Plantar fasciitis (acute inflammation)/fasciosis (chronic) is a diagnosis/ailment that affects 10% of the population, roughly 2 million people/year in the USA. Estimates of $284 million/year is spent on treatments. It usually involves pain on the bottom of the heel/arch and can be very debilitating. Many different practitioners treat this disorder.
As physical therapists, we will assess multiple things in order to help people with this ailment. We will evaluate the foot/ankle as well as the entire lower extremity/pelvis in order to be able to treat each case individually. Flat feet or high arch feet are more susceptible, as well as those people who stand/walk/run a lot. The biomechanical evaluation can reveal imbalances leading to the cause of the pain. Often, we will find limitations in range-of-motion and weakness that needs to be addressed in order to effectively treat this condition for long-term success.
Often, a change in shoe types or over-the-counter orthotics can be used in adjunct to the exercise prescription. We also have significant success at enhancing the healing time with ASTYM treatments. ASTYM uses specifically designed instruments that help to initiate the healing cascade, while breaking up scar tissue (abnormal collagen formation). This process is very conservative and price-effective in relationship to other treatment options such as surgery or injections. A patient may feel relief from a cortisone injection initially, but if the biomechanical imbalances that are causing the heel/arch pain are not addressed, then the rate of recurrence increases significantly.
So, if you are suffering from pain on the bottom of your heel or arch, look to a physical therapist with confidence to assist you in your recovery. The Functional Performance Center in Tempe, AZ, has been successfully treating patients with plantar fasciitis/fasciosis for over 15 years. Call 480.968.2020 to schedule a consultation. We take most insurance plans and also can assist you as a self-pay/cash patient without breaking your bank (injections can often be $750-1,500).