Do you have questions about foot care? We have answers.
Do you have questions about foot injuries or the causes of foot pain? Tanglewood Foot Specialists provides the answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about foot injuries and foot care. If you would like to schedule an appointment to talk to a doctor about your foot pain, call Tanglewood Foot Specialists at (713) 785-7881.
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Is there any new treatment for heel pain?
While the traditional conservative treatment for heel pain manages the vast majority of cases, if the condition remains unresolved there are other more advanced options. While more aggressive, these are still less invasive than surgery. The most common and available is extracorporeal shockwave therapy.
Shockwave therapy is a treatment for inflammation, including plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. It involves sending thousands of shocks to the inflamed area, resulting in an increase in blood flow to that area. This helps to heal the site of injury and resolve the pain. There are different types of shockwave therapy units. High energy units require anesthesia to allow the one treatment with comfort. Mid-energy units don't usually require any anesthesia, but need multiple treatments to be effective.
If you feel that your heel pain is not progressing, ask if newer treatments could work for you. Contact Houston podiatrist Dr. Andrew Schneider for a comprehensive evaluation to see what your best options are to eliminate your heel pain once and for all.
Do I need a cortisone shot to cure my heel pain?
In order to control the heel pain associated with plantar fasciitis, it is essential that the inflammation is controlled. This can be done in a variety of ways. Oral anti-inflammatory medication, known as NSAIDs, are a common way to eliminate inflammation. Using topical anti-inflammatories, such as ice or Biofreeze, is another important way to control inflammation.
It is common to hear about cortisone injections to treat the inflammation of plantar fasciitis. The benefits to having a cortisone injection is that it allows the medication is placed locally where the inflammation is focused. Cortisone is a very effective way to eliminate the inflammation of plantar fasciitis, however it is not the only way. Don't be afraid of a Cortisone injection and don't let it stop you from coming in to get your heel pain checked out. It's likely that you won't get one on your first visit...and possibly not at all!
If you are frustrated by continuing heel pain, contact Houston podiatrist Dr. Andrew Schneider to evaluate what else can be done to get you out of pain as quickly as possible.
How do custom orthotics keep my heel pain away?
Treating the inflammation associated with heel pain is only one part of the puzzle. It is also very important to treat the mechanical causes of heel pain. It is the unstable mechanics that prevents the inflammation from resolving on it's own. A custom orthotic is the best way to stabilize the foot function and address the biomechanical instability.
A custom orthotic is a shoe insert that is made specifically for a patient to allow the foot to work as efficiently as possible. By performing a comprehensive lower extremity biomechanical exam, your Houston podiatrist will be able to identify mechanical instability and will take a neutral mold of your foot. That mold will be modified with a unique prescription based on the examination to have the perfect orthotic made for you.
Identifying the contributing biomechanical factors associated with heel pain will enable the orthotics to prevent a recurrence of plantar fasciitis in the future. Contact Dr. Andrew Schneider at Tanglewood Foot Specialists for a comprehensive evaluation. It is time for your heel pain to stay away once and for all.
Why does my heel pain keep coming back?
Heel pain, commonly due to plantar fasciitis, is caused by two factors. First is the inflammation of the plantar fascia as it attaches to the heel bone. This is best handles by anti-inflammatory medication, whether oral, injected, or topical. The other contributing factor is mechanics, meaning the way the foot functions.
Once we successfully eliminate your pain with effective treatment of the inflammation, many people feel that their treatment has ended successfully. However, without the necessary treatment and control of the mechanical causes of heel pain, the inflammation often returns over time. Whether a matter of weeks or months, a recurrence of heel pain is not only frustrating, but increasingly difficult to treat. It is why your Houston podiatrist will likely recommend a custom orthotic to maintain the mechanical balance once the pain and inflammation has resolved.
If you are frustrated with heel pain that continually returns, contact Dr. Andrew Schneider at Tanglewood Foot Specialists for a comprehensive evaluation. It is time to get you out of pain once and for all.
Will I need special shoes to solve my heel pain?
There are many reasons why people hesitate to come to my Houston podiatry office when they are suffering from heel pain. One of those concerns is that I will stop you from wearing your favorite shoes. You may even fear hearing that you have to wear orthopedic shoes. While shoe choice does play a role in treating heel pain, it is rarely, if ever, as extreme as that.
Because heel pain is commonly due to the tension of the plantar fascia ligament on the heel bone, an important part of treatment is providing support to the ligament. Because of this, I recommend shoes that have support or can have support added to them. If you are accustomed to wearing flip-flops or Keds much of the time, you will likely be asked to change your footwear. Most shoes that are enclosed can accommodate an orthotic device and will not require a change in shoe gear.
A custom foot orthotic will help to control the forces in your feet that cause the extra tension on the tendon's or ligaments causing the inflammation. This is the best long term treatment to ensure your heel pain does not return in the future. If you are feeling pain on the bottom or the back of your heel, contact Houston podiatrist Dr. Andrew Schneider to eliminate your pain quickly and easily.
Can a bone spur go away without surgery?
Once formed, a bone spur does not typically go away on its own. That doesn't mean that it has to stay painful, however.
A bone spur is formed in areas of tension, pressure, or trauma. They are often present in various areas of the foot, such as the heel, top of the foot, and toes. They are often not painful, but have the potential to become so as time goes on. If painful, they can be treated with different shoe selection, padding, and custom orthotics.
Even if a bone spur that was once painful stops being so with treatment, it does not mean that the bone spur has gone away. In fact, it was the inflammation surrounding the spur that caused the pain in the first place and had been controlled. The body is capable of resorbing a spur, however it does not happen since the tension and pressure that caused it to form may be controlled, but it is not gone completely. The only way for a spur to be completely removed is with surgery.
If you are worried that you may be dealing with a bone spur on your foot, be sure to get it checked out. Dr. Andrew Schneider at Tanglewood Foot Specialists will be able to work with you to determine the best course of action to take.
Does a bonespur always require surgery?
Even if it is painful, a bone spur does not always require surgery. If you catch a bone spur formation early, you may be able to stop it from progressing. Removing or limiting the stress that is causing the spur to form will slow or stop it's progression. This can be done by changing shoegear or using a custom orthotic.
If the spur is already painful, using pads to cushion or support the bone spur is helpful in eliminating the pain. A painful heel spur is dealt with with a gel heel cushion. A bone spur on top of the foot can be offloaded by using a different lacing pattern or a pad that keeps the pressure off of the spur. Bone spurs between the toes are often well managed using toe separators pads.
These conservative measures are useful in managing the pain from a bone spur. If however the pain remains, surgery to remove the bone spur may be your best option.
Is the painful bump on the back of my heel due to a bone spur?
Some people develop a bump on the back of the heel. Because of the pressure from the back of a shoe, it can become inflamed and painful. It is called a Haglund's deformity, but is commonly known as a pump bump. Women are generally affected by a pump bump more than men are because of the shoes that they wear are more likely to irritate the back of the heel.
A pump bump is caused by a bone spur that forms on the back of the heel. It forms for one of two reasons. The first is due to excessive pulling of the Achilles tendon on the heel bone. This occurs due to a tight or shortened Achilles tendon. The other reason is due to the rocking motion of the heel bone during walking. This causes shear forces on the back of the heel and a buildup of bone in response to the pressure.
If you catch a bone spur forming before it becomes painful, it is usually effectively treated with a custom orthotic device. The orthotic helps to stabilize the foot function and limit the pressure and pulling on the heel bone. In more severe cases, foot surgery may be necessary to provide complete relief. Don't wait for pain to start. Call your Houston podiatrist before a problem starts.
Is a bone spur causing my heel pain?
Heel pain can be caused by a variety of factors. It most commonly caused by tension on the heel bone which causes inflammation. This is known as plantar fasciitis. The tension can also cause a bone spur, known as a heel spur, to form. The heel spur is not usually the cause of the pain and often does not need to be directly addrssed.
There are times where a heel spur is the main cause of heel pain. This occurs when there is atrophy of the fat padding beneath the heel. This increases the pressure from the heel spur against the ground and causes pain.
Both causes of heel pain are treatable and surgery is rarely required. Contact your foot doctor in Houston to learn how you can walk once again without pain.
Why do I have a bump on top of my foot?
A bump on top of your foot can be caused by a few conditions. While many people think that it is caused by a neuroma, that is usually not the case. If the bump is soft, it can be due to a bursitis or ganglion cyst, both of which are soft tissue conditions caused by pressure or trauma. If the bump on your foot is hard, it is often due to a bone spur.
Bone spurs can appear on top of your foot in a number of places and is caused by arthritic changes in and around the joint. Arthritis is not unusual in the feet because of the pressure placed on them with each and every step. Sometimes your foot mechanics causes you to have excess pressure around some joints. Other times, it's trauma that causes the bone spur formation.
Bone spurs can be treated in a variety of ways. Sometimes the pain is not due to the spur itself, but rather the inflammation of the soft tissue surrounding it. In these cases, anti-inflammatory medication or cortisone injections can manage the inflammation and eliminate the pain. When the motion of the joint is causing the spur to be painful, the use of a custom orthotic can be helpful in redirecting the excess stress on the joint. Of course there are times where the spur may need to be removed. In those cases, foot surgery may be recommended to remove the spur.
Visiting your foot doctor in Houston will provide you answers as to why your bone spur has formed and what can be done for it. Contact Dr. Andrew Schneider for an immediate appointment to learn all of your options.
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