Giving the tootsies a rest. (Photo: Flickr/Eric Lewis)
Q: I am a 55-year-old woman currently experiencing pain in the soles of my feet, specifically my heels. No pain when I am not putting pressure on them (such as when I'm sitting), but painful when I walk. The pain has been off-and-on for 2 months, some days more intense than others.
A: It sounds to be plantar fasciitis. This occurs due to irritation and inflammation of strong band of tissue which supports the arch. Around 90% of patients with plantar fasciitis will improve within 6-8 months of nonsurgical treatment.
You should follow these measures:
1. Complete rest. You should stop athletic activities (if you usually do them).
2. Stretching is very helpful. This includes calf stretch and plantar fascia stretches.
3. Use of supportive shoes and orthotics. A cushioned shoe or insert helps to reduce the tension and the micro trauma which occurs with every step.
4. A night splint is very effective, as it stretches the plantar fascia while you sleep.
5. Physical therapy. Use of various modalities of physical therapy like short-wave diathermy, infra red, and wax therapy are helpful in such conditions.
6. You can take a painkiller, like Tylenol.
7. If symptoms don't improve, then cortisone injections are very effective to treat the symptoms. It can be injected into the plantar fascia to reduce inflammation and pain.
I recommend that you need to follow these tips and see your doctor for management of this issue.
-- Answer from Dr. Robert Fernando, a family physician on JustAnswer.
Daily Answer is excerpted from the JustAnswer archives and features information provided by a Expert on JustAnswer.