If you believe your only choices for heel pain are “give it some rest and ice” or “go through full-blown foot surgery,” you are overlooking a wealth of additional options!
Persistent heel pain can come from a variety of different causes. That means we need to have a variety of different tools and treatments on hand in order to best serve the needs of each individual patients.
The truth is that the clear majority heel pain cases – even the chronic, stubborn ones – can be treated effectively via conservative measures. (In other words: without surgery).
While conservative treatment sometimes does take the form of simple rest, ice, compression, and elevation (RICE) protocols, there are other times when that is simply not enough. More advanced measures may be required, and we are happy to provide many of them at our practice. We’ll describe just a few of them here!
Custom orthotic inserts are a highly regarded and frequently recommended form of treatment. This is because they can provide a fundamental way to address common problems rooted in structural abnormalities in the feet.
When something is off within the skeletomuscular structure of the foot, it can often place excess strain on certain areas, like the plantar fascia or Achilles tendon. This often leads to heel pain. But by providing precise amounts of cushioning and corrective support in needed areas, that strain can be alleviated and the damage stopped.
At our practice, we use advanced digital scanning technology to obtain the information we need for custom orthotics, eliminating the need for cumbersome molds or casts.
Currently available at our offices in Joliet and Orland Park, Aquaroll therapy is a form of treatment that relies on stimulating and intensifying the body’s natural healing responses.
A treatment session involves placing the foot or feet into a warm tub filled with 30,000 small glass beads. For about 10-12 minutes, this tub circulates, causing the beads to continuously roll around the surface of the foot. This stimulates blood flow, which can increase the delivery of growth factors and other necessary elements to cells undergoing repair, as well as reduce inflammation.
Aquaroll therapy can be an effective measure in accelerating the healing of certain soft tissue injuries, and has often been used by athletes to help them return to action faster.
EPAT (extracorporeal pulse activation technology) therapy is another method for stimulating accelerated healing and pain relief, and one that can be effective on certain forms of chronic heel pain.
Also known as “shockwave therapy,” EPAT uses the external application of pressure waves to increase circulation, metabolism, and the healing response in targeted areas. EPAT has been used successfully for certain cases of plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis, and other associated soft tissue injuries.
MLS Laser Therapy
Available at our offices in Joliet, Orland Park, Kenosha, and Schaumburg, MLS laser therapy is yet another regenerative technique that has effectively reduced pain, accelerated healing, and decreased inflammation for certain soft tissue-related causes of heel pain.
While laser therapy may share some base similarities with EPAT and even Aquaroll therapies, each is better attuned to certain conditions. We must consider the condition that needs to be treated, your general health, and even the number of sessions that may be required when determining which form of treatment may be best.
Conditioning Stretches and Exercises
Often used as a supplement to other forms of treatment, the benefits of targeted stretching and exercises should not be discounted.
A simple routine that incorporates strength and endurance training for affected areas (and the areas that connect to them) can greatly help you relieve pain and avoid future problems. We can help you determine the best kinds of exercise to engage in for your specific situation.
Above All, Heel Pain Treatment Has to Work!
Our aim in treating heel pain will always be providing the most effective results with the least inconvenience to the patient. If you are an athlete or active individual, we want you back in action as soon as possible – safely, of course! If not, we still want your recovery to impede as little on your personal goals as it can.
Although we have many heel pain treatment options, it’s never a matter of looking through them and selecting which one you’d like to try. Each has strengths and benefits for certain types and causes of heel pain, and we will only ever make our recommendations for treatment after we have taken the time to examine your case and gather a firm understanding of what’s behind your pain.
Surgery will always only ever be considered if conservative forms of treatment haven’t or simply wouldn’t provide the results we need. When surgery is in the picture, we will always fully discuss the expectations of a recommended procedure and answer any questions you may have. We want to ensure you have all the information you need to make a confident decision on surgery – or any other heel pain treatment, for that matter!
Ready to take the first step toward well-deserved relief? Call any of our area offices to schedule an appointment with us! And if you would rather have an initial consultation from the safety of your own home, please do not hesitate to request a telemedicine appointment from us.