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Plantar Fasciitis


The term plantar fasciitis refers to inflammation located in the bottom of the foot, most commonly in the heel area. A thick band of tissue called the plantar fasciitis ligament is found between the heel bone and the bottom of the toes. When this ligament becomes over-tired or inflamed through overuse, it becomes inflamed, tender, painful and sometimes swollen and hot. The condition can affect anyone regardless of his or her activity or fitness level.


  • Overuse of the foot
  • Stress or injury to the bottom of the foot
  • Overtraining
  • Improper shoe fit
  • Flat feet
  • High foot arches
  • Standing on your feet all day


  • Tenderness and pain in the heel
  • Pain and tenderness on the sole of the foot
  • Pain when weight is placed on the ball of the foot
  • Weakness in the foot


  • Discussion of symptoms with your doctor
  • Physical examination
  • X-rays to check for fractures
  • Imaging tests to check for torn or inflamed tendon


Initial treatments for plantar fasciitis are directed self-care. For example:

  • Stretching exercises for the calf, foot, ankle and Achilles tendon
  • Rest
  • Warm up before exercising
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Massage with ice pack for 15 minutes several times a day
  • Heel cushions or arch supports worn in shoes
  • Taping or strapping
  • Night splints
  • Properly fitted shoes


If non-surgical approaches to treatment don't provide desired relief, surgery may be recommended by your doctor. Nearly all patients are able to recover from plantar fasciitis without surgery, but if it is indicated, plantar fasciitis release is a typical approach to releasing tension in the ligament and providing relief.