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Heel Pain Treatment: Choosing the Right PhysicianHeel Pain Treatment: Choosing the Right Physician

Your heel pain treatment depends on what is causing the heel pain. Causes include wearing tight-fitting shoes, injury to the plantar fascia (the ligament that runs from the heel to toe), heel spurs (growths that appear where the heel bone meets the heel bone) and arthritis. Other causes of heel pain treatment include infections, heel deformities due to genetic conditions and foot disorders, such as bunions and corns. Sometimes the pain stems from muscle inflammation and can be treated with medication or physical therapy.

In your search for a doctor, ask about the following questions: What is your specialty? What is the medical history of your family? How long have you been treating heel pain? Have you had patients with whom you are currently working? Another option is to see a doctor at Sydney Heel Pain.

Common Causes

Before you see a heel pain treatment doctor, make an appointment first to have your heel pain evaluated by a podiatrist. Heel pain is often a result of plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain but not all cases of heel pain treatment involve plantar fasciitis. The most common cause of heel pain is a heel spur. These heel spurs are growths of tissue that form between the heel bone and the heel shaft, causing inflammation and pain. Often, the spur disappears after some time but it can reoccur.

Diagnosis

A doctor will do X-rays, conduct a bone scan, take X-rays of the surrounding tissue and use a computerized tomography scan to see bone structure. This process is called computed tomography imaging. The doctor will also ask you about your footwear, medications, activities and any heel pain symptoms you may be experiencing. This information will help him or her to diagnose the problem and prescribe the best heel pain treatment for you.

Treatment

The doctor may recommend using night splints, orthotics and/or cortisone injections. If there is nerve damage present, the doctor may recommend nerve blocks or surgery. Heel pain usually responds well to orthotics. Night splints are another method used for heel pain treatment.

Osteoarthritis of the heel is usually treated with physical therapy, anti-inflammatory drugs, cortisone injections, heel lifts or a wheel brace. Heat treatments may be prescribed as well. Heel lifts are an alternative method of heel pain treatment used to correct deformities and encourage the growth of bone in the heel.

People who are obese, diabetic or have kidney disease should consult a doctor before beginning any treatment plan. Hormone therapy may be recommended by the doctor if the cause of the heel pain is not physical. Hormone treatment can improve the function of the glands and reduce pain and swelling.

As you can see, the treatment options for heel pain are quite varied. Some of your treatment choices can be discussed with your family doctor, but sometimes it is best to go it alone. There are many over the counter heel pain treatment products that you can try at home, such as inserts, creams, sprays and jelly-like products. But you may want to try more natural remedies or herbal products first. Natural products are usually much safer, have little to no side effects and are more affordable than prescription drugs.

In most heel pain treatment cases, the doctor will prescribe an oral anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen or naproxen to help ease the inflammation. You may also be given pain medication and cortisone. This can be administered either orally or through injections. The cortisone will be injected into the heel to reduce the swelling.

Surgery

Surgery is considered the last option for heel pain treatment. If this type of surgery is performed, your doctor will make certain adjustments to your lifestyle and to your foot structure to prevent heel pain again in the future. The most common surgery performed is the arthroscope procedure or the heel lift. This procedure is often done to alleviate chronic heel pain, which usually occurs after long periods of rest. After the surgery, your physician will advise you on how to care for yourself and to ensure that you do not develop heel pain again.

When selecting a doctor, ask about his or her experience. Find someone with enough experience and knowledge to treat your specific heel pain. You should also ask about the side effects and the cost of the treatment. Also, find out if there are any restrictions on the practice of medicine that your physician practices. With the right care and medications, heel pain usually subsides in just a few weeks.