Understanding Plantar Fasciitis

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Your podiatrist will perform a physical exam to check for the hallmark signs of plantar fasciitis. Typically, a physical exam is all that is needed to diagnose someone as having plantar fasciitis. However, depending on the severity or a high index of suspicion of other comorbidities your doctor may order x-rays, ultrasound, or an MRI of the foot to rule out any other pathologies.
Plantar Fasciitis x-ray

Heel pain, also known as plantar fasciitis, has become a major problem in America with over 10% of the population experiencing it at some point in their lifetime.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of the plantar fascia,

a fibrous tissue that runs along the arch of the foot to connect the heel to the ball of the foot creating a static stabilizer of the arch.

The plantar fascial acts as a shock absorber however too much pressure can cause the tissue to become inflamed and irritated.

This pain is often felt on your first steps in the morning upon getting out of bed or after extended periods of inactivity.

Heel spurs are not the same as plantar fasciitis; however, the two conditions can be related

How is plantar fasciitis diagnosed?

Your podiatrist will perform a physical exam to check for the hallmark signs of plantar fasciitis. Typically, a physical exam is all that is needed to diagnose someone as having plantar fasciitis. However, depending on the severity or a high index of suspicion of other comorbidities your doctor may order x-rays, ultrasound, or an MRI of the foot to rule out any other pathologies.

Plantar Fasciitis x-ray
How to Diagnose Plantar Fasciitis

Prevention and treatment

Most plantar fasciitis will be resolved with time and diligent conservative treatment such as:

stretching, rest, ice and avoidance of high-impact activities.

Other conservative treatments include:

Orthotics: custom inserts that are made specifically for the patient foot by the podiatrist; used to cushion and support the plantar fascia

Night splints: a device that you wear at night to hold your foot in a mild stretch

The night splints prevents the fascia from contracting during prolonged periods of inactivity i.e. sleep

Injections: anti-inflammatory steroid injections can be used to relieve inflammation in the short-term

Class 4 laser therapy: non-invasive painless laser therapy can alleviate pain, reduce inflammation and accelerate recovery.  

Laser is often paired with night splint and injection therapy

More recalcitrant cases may require surgery, but this is considered a last resort after conservative treatment has failed.

Dr. Kenya Lazovik

Dr. Kenya Lazovik

Dr. Lazovik strives to provide high-quality care to her patients at Cliffside Park Foot and Ankle Center. She is trained to address a wide range of medical issues such as bunions, arthritis, heel pain, sports medicine, flat foot, diabetic foot care, and wound care. Her office is outfitted with digital x-ray and lasers used in the treatment of fungal nails and various soft tissue injuries as well as an affiliation with a state-of-the-art custom orthotics lab.

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About Dr. Lazovik, DPM

Dr. Kenya Lazovik received her doctoral degree in podiatric medicine from the New York College of Podiatric Medicine and completed a podiatric residency training at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Queens. She is a member of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, the American Podiatric Medical Association, and the New Jersey Podiatry Medical Society. She is double board certified by ABFAS for Foot & Ankle surgery and by ABMSP for Diabetic Foot Care.

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