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Published on September 16, 2019

Find Relief for Your Foot Pain

Plantar Fasciitis in woman foot.

If you are experiencing severe pain in your feet, especially around your heels, then there may be a good answer as to why.

"Approximately 10% of the population will develop heel pain at some point in their lives,” says Erin Bott, Lead Physical Therapist at Wayne UNC Health Care Rehabilitation Services. “Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes.”

The plantar fascia is the band of thick, connective tissue that supports the bottom of the foot and extends from the heel bone to the base of the toe bones. When this tissue is damaged, it can become inflamed. “The most common symptom is sharp, stabbing pain along the bottom of the heel that is worse first thing in the morning and after prolonged standing and walking,” says Bott.

Bott goes on to explain that damage to the tissue is caused by excessive pressure on the feet and commonly caused by a job or recreational activity requiring prolonged standing or walking, a rapid increase in activity, weak core and hip muscles and improperly supported feet.

While many cases are treated and improved through stretching, strengthening exercises and hands-on therapy from a physical therapist, Bott says that a medical provider might also prescribe anti-inflammatory medication or recommend the use of ice or heat for pain relief. She also stated that steroid injections and surgery are possible, but that those options are usually reserved for severe cases that are not responsive to conservative treatment.

Since Plantar Fasciitis affects how long someone can stand and walk, Bott explains that not getting proper treatment can negatively impact their ability to work and enjoy other activities like walking, running and playing sports.

“Wayne UNC Health Care uses evidenced-based, up-to-date research in its approach to treatment with the goal of getting patients back on their feet as safely and as quickly as possible,” says Bott. “We provide an in-depth evaluation for each patient and develop individualized treatment plans focusing on correcting the area of weakness to improve your tolerance for daily activities.”

In addition to hands-on manual techniques and prescribing specialized exercises that support feet and improve core muscle and leg strength, Patrick Schultze, Staff Physical Therapist, says, “We use specialized modalities such as Integrative Dry Needling, Cupping, Soft Tissue Mobilization, Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization, Kinesiotaping, Blood Flow Restriction Training, Ultrasound and Electrical Stimulation to help decrease our patients’ pain and to improve their ability to participate in everyday activities.” The clinic tailors treatment to the needs of each patient.

For more information on how you can get help or to make an appointment, contact Wayne UNC Rehabilitation and Therapy Services at 919-731-6005 or request an appointment online.

Request an Appointment

You can request an appointment with our Rehabilitation and Therapy team today. We will then contact you to schedule your appointment.