Much like general foot pain, heel pain can interrupt your life in a major way. You need your heels in order to take steps and run properly. When the ligaments and muscles in the heels are inflamed or painful, it can seriously affect your ability to work, drive or even just walk from room to room. Here are three common causes of heel pain that you should discuss with your Chicago, IL heel pain doctor at Affiliated Podiatrists, Ltd.
Heel spurs, also referred to as Plantar Fasciitis, is an inflammation of the foot that affects the heel. The tissue that connects the heel to the toes (plantar fascia) is what causes the pain. This condition commonly develops over time when there’s too much pressure on the bottom of the foot in the wrong place. Patients who have heel spurs often don’t walk properly and wear poorly designed shoes.
Another foot condition that causes pain in the heel that your Chicago, IL podiatrist at Affiliated Podiatrists, Ltd treats is Achilles tendonitis. The Achilles tendon is a muscle that runs from the heel bone to the calf. It can become injured while playing sports or just by not wearing the right shoes for your feet. Over time and with sudden actions, the tendon can tear—sometimes completely—causing intense heel pain. This is why it’s so important to stretch and warm up become participating in high activity sports.
Rheumatoid arthritis (also called RA) can also cause heel pain. Arthritis is a chronic disease related to a malfunction of the immune system that causes damage to ligaments and other tissue in the body. It can occur in the hindfoot region, which houses the heel bones. RA in the heel can be a painful condition that needs immediate treatment.
Get Relief from Heel Pain
If you need pain relief, contact your Chicago, IL podiatrist at Affiliated Podiatrists, Ltd to discuss a solution to your foot problem. Call the office at to learn more about foot anatomy and treatments.
Find out if heel spurs could be the reason for your heel pain.
Did you know that the heel bone is the largest bone in the foot? Because of this, it takes a lot more abuse and shock than other parts of the foot, which can lead to some pretty unpleasant problems. If you are dealing with heel pain, find out if a heel spur could be to blame and how your Six Corners, Chicago podiatrists can give you the relief you need.
What is a heel spur?
A heel spur is an abnormal growth that gradually forms on the heel bone. As the plantar fascia (a thick band of tissue that runs underneath the foot from the heel to the toes) pulls away from the heel, a calcium deposit forms and in turn causes this hard protrusion.
What are the symptoms of a heel spur?
One of the most common and classic symptoms of heel spurs is severe pain in the back of the foot that is exacerbated by walking or standing.
What causes a heel spur to form?
So what causes the plantar fascia to pull away from the heel in the first place? Flat feet are typically the reason that the fascia tissue begins to stretch. But this doesn’t mean that those with high arches also can’t develop heel spurs.
Women are also more likely than men to develop heel spurs because of wearing certain shoes like heels on a regular basis that cause issues for the plantar fascia.
What are my treatment options?
Your Chicago, IL foot doctor will first need to determine the root cause of your heel spur in order to give you the best and most effective treatment. If the problem is due to flat feet (also referred to as overpronation) then we may recommend orthotics, or shoe inserts. These orthotics are custom-made to offer your foot support and to absorb shock to help reduce flat feet and to facilitate healing.
Here are some of the other common ways to treat heel spurs:
For those patients who don’t find the relief they need, your foot doctor in Six Corners, Chicago may recommend Extracorporeal Pulse Activation Treatment (EPAT) to safely and non-invasively speed up the healing process to reduce chronic forms of pain. EPAT can be great for treating heel spurs, as well as plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis. Call Affiliated Podiatrists today and nix heel pain.
Find out what EPAT therapy is and if it can effectively treat your foot problems.
When our Chicago podiatrists at Affiliated Podiatrists talk about EPAT, we are referring to Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT), an FDA-approved non-surgical therapy used to treat certain types of foot pain. Find out how EPAT works and whether it’s right for you and your feet.
What is EPAT?
EPAT stands for Extracorporeal Pulse Activation Treatment and this non-invasive treatment is designed to treat both acute and chronic injuries by allowing your Chicago, IL podiatrist to direct low-frequency sound waves to the injured area of your foot. Through these sound waves, we can increase blood flow and stimulate the body’s natural healing response to help facilitate faster healing.
What conditions can EPAT treat?
EPAT offers the best results to those patients dealing with pain caused by soft tissue injuries of the foot or ankle including,
What should I expect from my EPAT sessions? How many will I need?
Each EPAT session is usually performed in less than 15 minutes with the average number of treatments being three. A new session will be performed every seven to 10 days.
Before treatment begins an ultrasound gel will be applied to the injured area. Then a small device, from which sound waves are generated, is directed at the region. The acoustic energy tenderizes the chronically irritated tissue, and stimulates blood flow to aid healing.
When will I start to notice relief from my symptoms?
Some patients report feeling immediate relief from pain while for others it may take up to four weeks to experience the relief they want. Overall, about 80 percent of people who’ve had EPAT report either being pain-free or experiencing a significant reduction in pain.
Millions of people all over the world have experienced relief through EPAT and you can too! Call your Chicago foot doctors at Affiliated Podiatrists today at (773) 202-8800 to schedule a consultation. Say goodbye to foot pain once and for all!
The Chicago Marathon is coming up soon. Will your feet be ready? Running can place quite a bit of stress and strain on feet, especially during a marathon. Here are five tips your podiatrist at Affiliated Podiatrists recommends to make sure your feet will be ready for the Chicago Marathon this year.
1. Begin Training Well in Advance
If you plan on running the Chicago Marathon this year, you need to have started training well in advance. Try to do too much of your training at the last minute, and not only are you unlikely to do well during the race, but you are much more likely to develop an overuse injury such as plantar fasciitis.
2. Invest in Quality Socks and Shoes
Don't even attempt to run long distances without both shoes and socks that are up to the job. Skip your worn-out old tennis shoes and invest in quality running shoes that are comfortable and that offer the support and stability you need. Switch them out after every 350 to 500 miles, but be sure to break in a new pair well in advance of the race.
The socks you choose are just as important, as choosing the wrong pair can result in painful blisters or cuts. Choose well-fitting, moisture-wicking socks that won't bunch, twist or slide down.
3. Trim Your Toenails
Forget to trim your toenails and not only can you cut your surrounding toes during a long race, but your toenails can even turn black from the repeated pressure. Trim your nails straight across, and be careful not to cut them too short, as this can be uncomfortable as well.
4. Protect Against Blisters
Blisters are a common runners' complaint. Protect your feet by wearing the right pair of socks and shoes, by keeping your feet dry during the race, and by using a protective lubricant, powder or a bandage to prevent excessive friction in problem areas.
5. Visit Your Chicago Podiatrist
Lastly, if you have existing corns, calluses, warts or other foot problems, be sure to visit your Chicago podiatrist Dr. Feder before the race to have them taken care of. This will eliminate points of friction and help keep your feet safe and comfortable mile after mile.
You've been preparing for the Chicago Marathon for months. Don't let all of your hard work and training go to waste. Use these five tips from your podiatrist at Affiliated Podiatrists in Chicago to prepare your feet for an excellent race.
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