Our foot and ankle experts are well-versed in treating all of the above heel conditions and more severe cases of trauma to the heel. But as with any condition, a careful diagnosis must first be performed in order to ensure we’re treating the correct underlying issue.
Medical History & Physical Exam
We’ll begin by asking about your symptoms, reviewing your medical history and conducting a physical exam that may involve you performing a few movements or walking exercises. This will allow the specialist to see how your condition affects your heel when you’re seated or in motion. From there, they’ll likely order imaging tests like an X-ray, MRI or CT scan to confirm their suspicions or rule out more significant trauma.
Once they have confirmed your diagnosis, they’ll walk you through what it means and your treatment options. Your specific course of treatment will depend on your individualized diagnosis, but for many patients a course of non-operative treatments will be pursued first. Common treatment options include rest, icing, physical therapy, orthopedic inserts, stretching, controlled exercise and overall lifestyle improvements like weight loss and dietary changes. The majority of people see a reduction or elimination of their symptoms by pursuing weeks of these options.
For those that still cannot find relief, a more hands-on approach may be recommended. Your specialist may talk to you about different techniques like corticosteroid injections, braces or minimally invasive surgery. It typically doesn’t progress to this point, but these techniques have fantastic treatment success rates when performed by a skilled foot and ankle specialist.