My Child Has Heel Pain

Severe’s disease AKA calcaneal apophysitis is a growing pain at the back of the heel in young adolescents between the ages of 8 to 14. The heel bone contains a growth plate where the Achilles tendon attaches. Sever’s disease can occur for various reasons such as:

 The heel bones growth quicker than the ligaments that attach to it causing inflammation and pain

 A tight heel cord

 The undeveloped heel bone becomes stressed from repeated forces such as running and pounding on hard surfaces

 Obesity

 Biomechanical problems

Regardless of the etiology, children will often complain of pain at the back of their heel during sports, when they stand for too long or from shoes that rub at the back of their heels.

Diagnosis can be made based on the child’s symptoms and by performing a squeeze test. A positive squeeze test is defined as elicited pain when the child’s heel is squeezed from side to side.

Treatment for Severe’s disease is simple and mainly involves resting. It is advised that children take time off from sports and physical activity, stretch the leg muscles, ice the heel and take anti-inflammatory medications if needed to help reduce the swelling and alleviate pain. Gel inserts and orthotics may be recommended to support the heel. In severe cases a short leg cast may be applied to immobilize the foot and ankle and allow healing to occur.

If your child experiences symptoms of Sever’s disease come see our staff at Foot & Ankle Doctors, Inc.

 

Dr. Nejad

Got a pump bump?

A Haglund’s deformity also known as “pump bump” is a bony enlargement at the back of the heel that becomes irritated when rubbed against the stiff heel counter of shoes. It commonly presents in women who wear high-heeled shoes (pumps) for long periods of time. The bump appears near the attachment of the Achilles tendon and becomes red and swollen. There is a fluid filled sac called a bursa that sits between the heel bone and the Achilles tendon, which becomes inflamed and very painful with constant aggravation.

Dr. Nejad first recommends taking your shoes off and resting while icing the back of your heel for 20 minutes. He also recommends placing heel pads in the back of your shoes to relieve the pressure from the area of discomfort. In most cases the shoes you are wearing is the culprit so try switching from closed back shoe to an open back shoes or shoes with a softer heel counter. If the pain persists come see Dr. Nejad at Foot & Ankle Doctors, Inc.

 

Other treatment options include shoe modifications, topical anti-inflammatory medications that can directly be applied to the heel, ultrasound treatments and steroid shots to reduce the inflammation. In some patients the Achilles tendon or heel cord is tight and can compress the bursa causing pain. Stretching exercises can reduce the tightness of the Achilles tendon and relief pressure off the bursa. Heel lifts added to the shoe can also reduce the tension from the Achilles tendon. Custom orthotics can aid in controlling abnormal motion of the foot contributing to symptoms. In more extreme cases a walking cast may be used immobilize the foot reducing pressure and allowing the inflammation to subside. If these treatment options don’t provide adequate relief, surgery may be required to remove the bony bump from the heel.

Dr. Farshid Nejad

Morning Heel Pain

Do you ever wake up and have pain in your feet after stepping out of bed? Do you have foot pain when walking barefoot? You may have a condition known as plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a long band of tissue that stretches from your heel along the length of the arch and inserts into the toes helping to support the arch of the feet. When this band of tissue becomes aggravated or strained it becomes inflamed. The inflammation of this ligament is called plantar fasciitis.

Overpronation is the most common cause of plantar fasciitis. Pronation is an inward rolling movement of the foot that naturally occurs when walking or running. When pronation occurs in excess amount it is termed overpronation, which results in excessive inward rolling, stretching and flattening of the foot resulting in increased stress on the plantar fascia. Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain in runners because they pull and stretch this band of tissue causing microscopic tearing. Overweight individuals can also experience plantar fasciitis because they put a lot of pressure and force on the band causing small tears leading to inflammation and pain. Most people with plantar fasciitis experience a stabbing pain at their heel with the first few steps it the morning, or after getting up from sitting for an extended period of time. The pain tends to get better after moving around.

If the underlying cause of plantar fasciitis is left untreated it can progress into chronic heel, knee, hip or back pain. Plantar fasciitis can be easily treated if caught early. If you experience any of these symptoms see your local podiatrist or come see us at Foot & Ankle Doctors, Inc.

 

Dr. Farshid Nejad