3 podiatrists with a dedicated interest in plantar fasciitis and other causes of heel pain such as Achilles tendonitis. Offering treatment from Sydney CBD, Parramatta, Narellan and Miranda.
We have tried pretty much every single available treatment, that you can probably think of, over the years and only use reliable ones that actually work. We are not just focused on reducing pain, but instead we treat the cause of your heel pain condition. This will ensure that the condition heals and is less likely to return.
“A funny note: While there is an age-old notion that high heels are bad for women and that flat shoes are good, nearly every single female patient with plantar fasciitis finds relief from a high heeled shoe”.
Another common cause of heel pain is an inflamed bursa. Known as bursitis. Bursitis can occur in patients with plantar fasciitis, where the bursa sits over the plantar fascia, beneath the skin, under the heel bone. But more commonly they give pain around the back of the heel bone in the area where the Achilles tendon attaches to the back of the heel bone. Therefore, they can be seen on association with Achilles tendonitis or insertional Achilles tendonitis. The bursa can be named retro calcaneal bursitis or adventitial bursitis.
Please note: patient’s with plantar fasciitis can also experience pain from an overlying bursitis. In this instance, we treat the bursa as well as the plantar fascia.
Plantar fasciitis is such a common condition that approximately 80% of patients at Sydney Heel Pain Clinics are requesting treatment for this debilitating condition. We have a page here dedicated to case studies, which relates to authentic cases of patient’s that we have successfully treated. http://www.sydneyheelpain.com.au/case-studies/
We also find that the condition is seasonal – we have our theories. Throughout the summer (or the warmer weather) the number of new patient’s coming to the clinic complaining of plantar fasciitis increases dramatically. January is our busiest month and it is not uncommon for us to see 50 or more cases of plantar fasciitis in one week, across all our clinics.
We believe that the average person takes time off over the Christmas holidays and consequently walks bare foot, or in thongs / sandals for up to 2 weeks. These people who develop plantar fasciitis also spend time walking on the beach or parks. This sudden change in walking habits can be directly stressful on the feet which can lead to an overload of strain and tension on the plantar fascia – resulting in plantar fasciitis or plantar fascial rupture. However, these changed walking habits can also cause the calf muscles to become short and tight, and this can create an increased pulling mechanism on the heel bone which can also cause plantar fasciitis.
Your plantar fasciitis could have been caused by over use of your soft and comfortable shoes. If it wasn’t your Skechers, then it could have been your Nike free as these also lack support. While these shoes are stylish and very common, they don’t suit everyone. Our belief is that these shoes should not be used as your main shoe, and that the time spent using them should be reduced. While we won’t necessarily place the entire blame on your shoes, we must still bear in mind that footwear selection is part of the problem, and forms part of the rehab. We observe healing and pain relief in patients with plantar fasciitis when they change their shoes. Firm shoes with more support through the entire sole of the shoe, offering more rigidity (and some cushioning inside) give great results. Not just for plantar fasciitis but for Achilles tendon issues too. Obviously, a pair of running shoes or walking shoes are the best, but we understand that not all patients can wear these shoes on a daily basis. The podiatrists at Sydney Heel Pain Clinic will help you choose footwear and can give recommendations. We offer running shoe recommendations but also street shoes and office attire. We also have a page dedicated to shoes in our mobile phone app.
More about this age-old notion that high heels are bad for women and that flat shoes are good and nearly every single female patient with plantar fasciitis finding relief from a high heeled shoe:
When the foot sits inside a shoe with a higher heel, the arch contour of the foot rises and the length of the foot decreases (the foot gets shorter). The net effect is that there is less pulling through the plantar fascia (the sole of the foot) and hence the fascia doesn’t pull so hard on the heel any more. This is why the pain from the plantar fasciitis reduces or goes away completely. This is not to say that using a high heel is part of the treatment for heel pain. Using the higher heels can cause the calf muscles to tighten, and this is not good long term – this can cause plantar fasciitis in some people. Higher heels also affect the load on the forefoot and the hips / lower back. Please note : High heels seem to reduce the symptoms temporarily, they don’t necessarily “treat” the condition.
If the pain from your plantar fasciitis or other heel pain condition is excruciating, then you may have torn something. Soft tissue rupture is not uncommon. Physical assessment in the clinic can help and the most appropriate treatment plan can then be put in place (treatment for plantar fasciitis with a tear is not the same as treatment for the condition without).
Patients with torn fascia come from all walks of life. Most people we treat are not members of a sports team and were not necessarily exercising when they tore their plantar fascia or Achilles tendon. Most people with this acute condition struggle to walk without limping and feel throbbing when they are sat still / lying down.
Ultra sound imaging is not always necessary as it doesn’t change the treatment plan, but it will confirm the difference between plantar fasciitis and plantar fascial tears. It will also tell us if there is an overlying bursitis.
Yes. Most people with plantar fasciitis are affected in only one foot. It can of course develop in the good foot later, if the person limps for long enough to avoid pushing off the bad foot. It’s a common question due to an incorrect assumption that we humans are perfectly symmetrical. We most definitely aren’t. We have a bigger foot, a longer leg or a shorter stride on one side, and this affects the load on the foot. Hence most heel pain conditions, including plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis will start in one foot only.
NOTE: If your plantar fasciitis hits you hard in both feet at the same time, and affects your arches more than your heels then this can be due to either an auto-immune disorder or hormonal changes seen in menopause.
Not always. We have a variety of treatment options at Sydney Heel Pain Clinic and we will select one or a combination of treatments based on the severity of your condition, the length of time you have been in pain and the physical / bio mechanical findings that we observe on the day. Yes, plantar fasciitis does respond really well to orthotics as the inserts will support the foot and remove the strain on the plantar fascia itself. This allows it to heal naturally. But there are other treatments that may be more suitable. Not all orthotics are designed and made equally, regardless of the way in which your foot shape was moulded or scanned.
NOTE: Let’s just say that the podiatrist becomes the “Architect” and hence the end product will be a result of his or her experience, taste, belief’s and overall approach. You might see 3 different podiatrists and end up with 3 different orthotics that look similar but work and feel different.
At Sydney Heel Pain Clinic we have been using the same lab since 2003 and we have an excellent relationship based on years of communication and them understanding our patient needs. The technicians and the senior lab staff know that we treat lots of heel pain and that so many of our patients have plantar fasciitis, and hence they follow our instructions meticulously. We rarely need to modify our orthotics or make adjustments, due to the high quality of craftsmanship.
We assure all patients that they will be 100% happy / comfortable in their orthotics, if we decide that orthotic therapy is the treatment of choice. There is a 12 month warranty on all orthotics.