Heel Spur

A Heel Spur is a hook of bone that can form on the heel bone (calcaneus).


Symptoms 

The Heel Spur itself is not thought to be painful. Patients who experience pain with Plantar Fasciitis are suffering from inflammation and irritation of the plantar fascia. This the primary cause of pain and not the Heel Spur.

Heel Spurs form in some patients who have plantar fasciitis, and tend to occur in patients who have had the problem for a prolonged period of time. While about 70 % of patients with plantar fasciitis have a heel spur, X-rays also show about 50 % of patients with no symptoms of plantar fasciitis also have a heel spur.

 Treatment 

Treatment of Heel Spurs is the same as treatment of plantar fasciitis.

To arrive at an accurate diagnosis, our foot and ankle Chartered Physiotherapists will obtain your medical history and examine your foot. Throughout this process the physio will rule out all the possible causes for your heel pain other than plantar fasciitis.

The following treatment may be used:

  • Orthotics/Insoles
  • Inflammation reduction
  • Mobilisation
  • Taping and Strapping
  • Rest

 

Our Expertise

The terms Heel Spur and plantar fasciitis are often confused. While these two diagnoses are related, they are not the same. The diagnosis of heel spurs can be confused with tarsal tunnel syndrome. Heel spurs are common in patients who have a history of foot pain caused by plantar fasciitis.

A Heel Spur diagnosis is made when an X-ray shows a hook of bone protruding from the bottom of the foot at the point where the plantar fascia is attached to the heel bone.

The plantar fascia is the thick, connective tissue that runs from the calcaneus (heel bone) to the ball of the foot. This strong and tight tissue helps maintain the arch of the foot. It is also one of the major transmitters of weight across the foot as you walk or run. In other words, tremendous stress is placed on the plantar fascia.

 


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