Diagnosing Plantar Fasciitis 

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain, and is characterised by a stabbing pain in the bottom of your foot near the heel. The condition is brought on when a thick band of tissue across the bottom of your foot (called the plantar fascia) becomes inflamed. This inflammation can take a long time to develop, but it is typically caused due to a sport-related activity or as a result of a poor choice of footwear.

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What are the causes of plantar fasciitis?

There are several risk factors that can increase your chances of developing plantar fasciitis. These typically include:

  • Over-exercising – like running or jumping-related exercises can cause inflammation.
  • Poor footwear – as incorrectly sized shoes don’t give a sufficient level of protection to your feet.
  • Obesity – as the added weight puts extra stress on your feet and plantar fascia tissue.
  • Standing for long periods – as being on your feet for several hours can damage the tissue.
  • Age – as plantar fasciitis is more common in people aged between 30 and 60 years old.

    What are the common symptoms?

    Plantar fasciitis causes a stabbing pain in the base of your foot, which you particularly feel when first standing up for the day. The pain usually subsides as the day goes on, but worsens again following long periods of standing and exercising.

    Since plantar fasciitis is referred to as an overuse injury, it is particularly affiliated with sports that involve running or jumping.

    How is it diagnosed?

    The most accurate method for diagnosing plantar fasciitis is via a Foot Ultrasound. While it may be possible to self-diagnose the condition, in order to truly understand the extent of the issue and know which treatment plan will be most suitable, you will require the support of a professional. Fortunately, our dedicated team at Sussex Foot Centre are here to help. Call us today to book an appointment.

      Plantar fasciitis treatment

      What is the process for a Plantar fasciitis ultrasound?

      So, what exactly is the process is involved with a foot ultrasound? And what do they do?

      Plantar fasciitis ultrasounds are an imaging method that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce accurate images of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joints within particular areas of the body. They are a completely painless procedure and only take approximately 15 minutes to complete.

      Here is what the process involves:

      1. A small amount of jelly-like gel is applied to the area causing you pain. This gel is designed to prevent air pockets, which often interfere with the sound waves that are used when developing the images.
      2. Next, a small hand-held device will be moved across the affected area, capturing the picture simply and painlessly. This image will then show on the ultrasound monitor, allowing you to see the inner-workings of your foot in real-time.
      3. During this stage, your podiatrist will be able to see the extent of the issue at hand, and be able to evaluate which treatment plan will be best suited to you.
      4. At the end of the examination, a member of our team will explain what they found, and talk through with you any next steps required.
      5. You will then, if required, start an appropriate treatment plan to try and resolve the issue.

      For a quick overview on what a foot ultrasound will involve, check out the video at the top of this page.

        What is Ultrasound?

        Once a musculoskeletal ultrasound has pinpointed a specific issue, a foot ultrasound guided injection will often be used to ensure that treatments are accurately administered. Using our ultrasound equipment, we can guide injections of cortisone to the exact location that’s causing pain, helping to ensure the effectiveness of our treatments.

        How can you treat plantar fasciitis?

        Treating plantar fasciitis really depends on the severity of the issue. For less severe conditions, home-based care can make a big difference. Here are some of our top tips on how to prevent its onset:

        • Invest in good, appropriately-sized footwear.
        • Use an ice pack on the affected area whenever pain arises.
        • Keep your foot nice and rested when on your feet all day.
        • Stretch your feet using suitable daily stretching exercises to strengthen the plantar fascia.
        • Use a night splint to stretch the plantar fascia as you sleep.

        If these recommendations don’t work for you, and you are still in pain after several months, a more invasive treatment could be required to resolve the problem. Some examples of these include:

        • Steroid injections – to deliver more effective pain relief.
        • Physical therapy – to strengthen your lower leg muscles and stretch the plantar fascia.
        • Shock wave therapy – to stimulate healing in the area of heel pain.
        • Tenex procedure – to remove the scar tissue of plantar fasciitis without surgery.
        • Surgery – to detach the plantar fascia from the heel bone.

        Here at Sussex Foot Centre our expert team of podiatrists are able to identify and treat a whole host of lower limb-related issues, including plantar fasciitis. If you are suffering with chronic heel pain, make sure to contact us today, or book an appointment by clicking the button below.

          What is Shockwave Therapy?

          What is Shockwave Therapy?

          What is Shockwave Therapy? Shockwave therapy, or, Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT), is a highly effective treatment for pain, chronic soft tissue injuries, as well as certain types of bone conditions. An extracorporeal shockwave is a non-invasive,...

          Plantar Fasciitis: A Brief Overview

          Plantar Fasciitis: A Brief Overview

          Coping with chronic heal pain can be a real pain in the, well, foot. Diagnosing exactly what the issue is can also be difficult without a proper medical examination. However, a likely culprit will be plantar fasciitis – a chronic, weight bearing, repetitive...

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          Jon Collins and team provide excellent patient focused, customer focused care. I have not met a better podiatrist than Jon in over 30 years in healthcare management and 10 years as a patient. As you step into reception you are welcomed with both smile and greeting. Even though it is a busy practice, changes in appointment are politely and readily managed. Forgetfulness and a missed appointment are taken in their stride! I attended first as an ”emergency” patient, three years ago. I was at the local hospital and the Sussex Foot Centre was suggested. I was seen the same afternoon. After months of hobbling, Jon treated my foot with professional skill, exuding warm reassurance. Regular attendance and treatment ensured rapid improvement. The specially created insole proved to be a boon. I have remained with Jon as my podiatrist for three years now. I can think of no reason why I should go elsewhere. I have no hesitancy in recommendinng him. When my GP asked me why I go over to Haywards Heath, my reply was that he is the best.
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          24/03/2022
          I found The Sussex Foot Centre via Google and what a find! I started seeing Jon last summer with painful Plantar Fasciitis in both feet. With Jon’s knowledge, non invasive treatment and orthotics, I am so grateful to him for my pain free feet now! Jon and his team are so helpful, with total professionalism and extensive knowledge - I have learnt so much! Tom on reception is also so very friendly and efficient. Keep up the amazing work you all do.
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