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What are treatment options for plantar fasciitis?

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2020 | Workers' Compensation

Plantar fasciitis is a repetitive stress injury that can affect your feet. You may be at risk if you work a job that requires you to spend most of your day standing or walking. Teachers and factory workers are among those more likely to develop work-related plantar fasciitis. 

The Mayo Clinic explains that the plantar fascia is a band of tissue that supports the arch of your foot and that it can become inflamed due to stretching and/or tearing from repeated pressure and stress. It causes heel pain that tends to get better with activity and worse with rest. There are both procedural and conservative treatment options. 

Procedural options 

Surgery is usually not the first-line treatment for plantar fasciitis. Your doctor may only resort to it if other treatment methods have failed. It involves releasing the plantar fascia from the heel to relieve the pain. Prior to that point, your doctor may try an injection of steroid medication to reduce the inflammation, which may provide temporary relief. Another minimally invasive option involves inserting a needle-like probe into the foot to repair the tissue under ultrasound guidance. 

Conservative options 

Your doctor may prescribe orthotics in the form of arch supports for your shoes. You may have these custom-fitted, or your doctor may recommend off-the-shelf arch supports not crafted specifically for your feet. These can help your pain by distributing pressure more evenly over each foot. Physical therapy exercises for strengthening and stretching may help relieve your symptoms as well as night splints that hold the plantar fascia in a lengthened position while you sleep. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs available over the counter may help decrease the inflammation and pain.