Heel Pain / Plantar Fasciitis
Plantar fasciitis, pronounced “PLAN-ter fash-ee-EYE-tiss,” is a stress injury that affects the tissue running from your toes to your heel. Tiny tears along this band of tissue may cause stabbing pain usually in the heel area, but it may move to other areas of the feet periodically.
Plantar fasciitis is often due to wear and tear and is common among athletes who run and jump a lot, and also those who are overweight, stand for prolonged periods, or work on hard surface floors. For example, teachers or factory workers may be more susceptible to this injury. A recent change in activity or some physical stress on the feet may have brought on the heel pain.
There is a lot of misinformation online about treatments for this painful condition, and “Dr. Google” may not be the best way to seek a cure. This is a medical condition that needs real treatment by an experienced foot doctor who is professionally trained to cure this ailment.
Dr. Farajian is a board-certified specialist and has successfully treated thousands of patients who suffer from this condition, and our office has an extensive set of painless, modern procedures to get you back on your feet. Treatments are designed to relieve inflammation and pain, heal the damaged tissue, and prevent future complications. Conservative treatments are designed to prevent surgical procedures which are treated as last resort by Dr. Farajian.
“Soooo happy I finally picked up the phone last week and scheduled with Dr. Farajian. I went to my orthopedic doctor and he basically said there wasn’t much he could do, Dr F looked at my feet and within minutes identified immediately five issues. WOW!!! Both feet FEEL AMAZING!!!! So thrilled I went!!!! Don’t wait!!”
“My name is Denise. I cannot say enough about the excellent experience I had with Dr. Farajian and her staff. It was clear that she is light years ahead of the others with her diagnosis and suggested treatment. My surgery went great and my foot looks amazing. I am so thankful for Dr. Farajian.”
“Dr. Farajian and her staff are 5 stars all the way. They’re helpful, compassionate, friendly and efficient. I was scared he needed surgery. As it turned out he didn’t need surgery at all. We feel so lucky to have found her!”
“I REALLY REALLY REALLY APPRECIATE what she did for me. She is the only doctor who could help me. Kind and knowledgeable, she is, without a doubt, The BEST!”
If icing the heel, massaging the area, and morning exercises and stretches have not provided relief for you, don’t “work through the pain” as this can only exacerbate the problem. Arrange for an appointment with Dr. Farajian so a specialist with decades of experience can heal the pain.
The treatments at our office include:
Painless Cold Laser Therapy – One of the most popular treatments at our office, this painless procedures uses laser light, infrared light, and electric stimulation simultaneously to reduce inflammation, increase blood-flow, and speed up the reproduction of healthy cells in the damaged tissue. All without any pain whatsoever. Several treatments are usually recommended. Enjoy a complimentary treatment of MR4 cold laser for your first visit so you can see why so many of our patient come again and again for this service.
Custom medical grade orthotics – All the weight of the body is on your feet, and if there are bio-mechanical issues such as low or high arches etc., the alignment of the bones in your foot and ankle, knees, hips and back may suffer. Custom orthotics are highly effective in correcting many foot problems, especially with plantar fasciitis. If Dr. Farajian recommends them for you, we will get an impression of your feet and a professional orthotics lab will create a custom pair for you in about a week. Many insurance companies will cover part or all of the costs for this procedure.
Night Splints – Dr. Farajian may dispense hybrid night splints for plantar fasciitis during your visit, and most insurances cover the cost. The goal of this splint, worn at night while you sleep or while you rest, is to keep the calf and Achilles stretched so that morning pain is minimal. We dispense the hybrid splint which allows you to increase or decrease the pressure if needed.
Cortisone Injection and medication – When the swelling and pain become severe, cortisone injections are offered to our patients. Plantar Fasciitis takes months to heal and sometimes you may need to have temporary relief for special events. Each patient reacts differently to cortisone injections but the relief is often immediate, though temporary. Anti-inflammatory medications can also be prescribed by Dr. Farajian in order to reduce the inflammation in the heel and arches of your feet, and ease the pain.
Platelet Rich Plasma – Dr. Farajian’s office offers a new and popular way to heal the foot with blood therapy, when conservative treatments are ineffective. After 3-6 months, the body gives up on the injured area. PRP takes advantage of the healing elements in the patient’s own blood to create what is often referred to as “liquid gold,” by injecting cells directly into the damaged area which causes the body to start the healing process again. The principle is to take advantage of the body’s ability to heal its own wounds and to combine this natural healing ability with modern medical technology.
Stem Cell Therapy – Like PRP, Stem cell injections are virtually pain-free procedures and have been successful in treating patients with tendon and ligament damage, as well as for degenerative arthritis. Amniotic cells are regulated by the FDA and are considered safe and non-controversial. After harvest, the cells are sterilized and frozen and transported for injection. Such non-surgical procedures are designed to treat plantar fasciitis and other conditions as minimally invasive as possible, and usually deliver excellent result in 80% of our patients. Ask Dr. Farajian for more information.
Tenex Procedure – If conservative treatments don’t heal plantar fasciitis, Dr. Farajian may recommend the Tenex procedure. Tenex removes the diseased tissue through very precise microscopic cutting. It takes only about fifteen minutes and is a minimally invasive procedure for soft tissue damage. Usually performed in a surgery center, it’s covered by most insurance plans and recovery may be as little as one or two weeks. Usually our patients are able to do light weight-bearing exercises in about two weeks.
If you suffer from Plantar Fasciitis you may have severe foot pain in the mornings. You may have made the mistake of “working through pain,” and now the pain has become unbearable. Dr. Farajian routinely sees patients with this condition and our office is equipped with the latest technologies such as cold laser, and prescriptions for custom foot orthotics, night splints and if necessary, cortisone injection to give you relief. The symptoms can several months to heal and seeing a foot specialist is very much recommended for this condition. Contact our office for expert hands at 714-842-7277.
The condition occurs when the plantar fascia is strained over time beyond its normal extension, causing the soft tissue fibers of the fascia to tear or stretch at points along its length, leading to inflammation, pain, and possibly the growth of a bone spur where the plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone. The inflammation may be aggravated by shoes that lack appropriate support, especially in the arch area; by walking barefoot; and by the chronic irritation that sometimes accompanies an athletic lifestyle. Resting provides only temporary relief.
When you resume walking, particularly after a night’s sleep, you may experience a sudden elongation of the fascia band, which stretches and pulls on the heel. As you walk, the heel pain may lessen or even disappear, but that may be just a false sense of relief. The pain often returns after prolonged rest or extensive walking.
The diagnosis of plantar fasciitis is usually made by clinical examination.
Depending on your particular situation, she may elect to use imaging studies like radiographs (X-rays), diagnostic ultrasound and MRI. Conservative treatments may include night splints (dispensed at our office and usually covered by insurance), custom orthotics (sometimes covered by insurance), cortisone injections if needed, and cold laser treatments. Dr. Farajian does not recommend surgery unless you are still having pain after trying other treatments for 6 to 12 months.
What causes Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is caused by straining the ligament that supports your arch. Repeated strain can cause tiny tears in the ligament. These can lead to pain and swelling. This is more likely to happen if:
- Your feet roll inward too much when you walk (excessive pronation camera).
- You have high arches or flat feet.
- You walk, stand, or run for long periods of time, especially on hard surfaces.
- You are overweight.
- You wear shoes that don’t fit well or are worn out.
- You have tight Achilles tendons or calf muscles.
- What are the symptoms?
- Most people with plantar fasciitis have pain when they take their first steps after they get out of bed or sit for a long time. You may have less stiffness and pain after you take a few steps. But your foot may hurt more as the day goes on. It may hurt the most when you climb stairs or after you stand for a long time.
Family Foot & Ankle also offers the revolutionary SUPER PULSED LASER TREATMENT for Plantar Fasciitis pain relief. The Multi Radiance 4 Super Pulsed Laser is the latest FDA approved treatment for foot and ankle pain that uses non-invasive cold laser therapy to reduce pain and inflammation. Just a few short painless treatments and you will be back to your active lifestyle. This highly effective treatment is popular with professional and college sports teams.
View this video about Light Therapy:
The MR4 was the first of its kind to combine: 1) super-pulsed infrared laser radiation; 2) pulsating broadband infrared non-coherent light; 3) pulsating red light (LED); and 4) a constant magnetic field. These four act simultaneously and synergistically to provide a non-invasive, drugless, safe, and painless method to relieve pain, reduce swelling, and promote tissue healing in both chronic and acute conditions.
Benefits of Laser Therapy:
- Virtually No Contra-Indications
- Easy to Apply
- No Side Effects or Pain
- Very Safe
- Cost Effective
- Highly Effective for Patient (more than 90% efficacy)
- Superior Alternative to: Analgesics, NSAID’s, Other Medications, Other Modalities
- Reduces Need for Surgery
Therapeutic Laser Biological Effects
Rapid Cell Growth – Laser light accelerates cellular reproduction and growth.
Faster Wound Healing – Laser light stimulates fibroblast development and accelerates collagen synthesis in damaged tissue.
Increased Metabolic Activity – Higher outputs of specific enzymes, greater oxygen and food particle loads for blood cells and thus greater production of the basic food source for cells, Adenosine Tri-Phosphate (ATP).
Reduced Fibrous Tissue Formation – Laser light reduces the formation of scar tissue following tissue damage from: cuts, scratches, burns or post surgery.
Anti-Inflammatory Action – Laser light reduces swelling caused by bruising or inflammation of joints to give enhanced joint mobility.
Increased Vascular Activity – Laser light induces temporary vasodilation increasing blood flow to damaged areas.
Stimulated Nerve Function – Slow recovery of nerve function in damaged tissue can result in “dead” limbs or numb areas. Laser light speeds the process of nerve cell reconnection to bring the numb areas back to life.
MR4 laser technology is the first of its kind to combine the entire range of the therapeutic light spectrum and deliver therapeutic energy in a synergistic manner. The syncing of the therapeutic wavelengths creates an optimal environment that reinforces the effects of the individual wavelengths to create the world’s most advanced pain relieving modality.
This FDA cleared device provides an effective non-surgical, drug-free treatment option. MR4 laser features a unique combination of radiances that work synergistically for optimal pain relief and healing. These include: super pulsed laser, pulsed broadband infrared SLDs, pulsed red light, static magnetic field and electrical stimulation.
The MR4 includes the patented LaserSweep technology which creates a constantly changing frequency to scan the selected target tissue from superficial to deep. This prevents biological adaptation to treatment for maximum impact.
The MR4 excels where most laser devices fall short. It delivers higher peak power yet is safe without the risk of thermal damage found with class IV lasers.