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Heel pain is one of the most common concerns patients bring up to their doctors. If you experience pain in your heel, it can make standing and walking very uncomfortable. This can make it very difficult to accomplish your daily activities, as the heel pain may get worse with added pressure. There are a number of different reasons you may experience this discomfort. Here are the five biggest causes of heel pain.

Heel Pain Cause #1: Plantar Fasciitis

Causes And Treatment For Heel Pain By 5-Star Rated Podiatrist Near Arlington VA

At the top of the list of causes of heel pain is plantar fasciitis, which is the most commonly diagnosed condition to affect the heel. Signs of this condition include swelling and sharp pain. Better fitting shoes can help plantar fasciitis, as well as over the counter medication. You can read more about the signs and treatment options for this condition here.

Heel Pain Cause #2: Heel Spur

A heel spur is a hook of bone that can form on the heel bone. Heel spurs are most often seen in people with chronic heel pain attached to plantar fasciitis. X-rays typically reveal the presence of a heel spur in 70% of patients with plantar fasciitis. Heal spurs aren't always painful, but stretching exercises, ice, and rest can help alleviate this condition.

Heel Pain Cause #3: Tarsai Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsai tunnel syndrome is the carpel tunnel syndrome of the heel. This syndrome causes a large nerve in the back of the foot to get pinched within a narrow region, leading to heel discomfort. If you experience numbness across the bottom of your foot, pain or tingling, or a burning sensation over the heel, it's important to talk to a Arlington, VA area podiatrist. Anti-inflammatory medications can help, as well as cortisone shots that your podiatrist in Arlington, VA can provide.

Heel Pain Cause #4: Stress Fractures

If you are an athlete, stress fractures might be the cause of your heel pain. Stress fractures are considered an overuse injury, where the bone is exposed to an extreme amount of force. This can cause a break or fracture. The most effective treatment for a stress fracture is icing and resting the foot. If there is concern on displacement of the fracture, crutches may be recommended.

Heel Pain Cause #5: Posterior Heel Pain

Instead of happening on the bottom of your foot, posterior heel pain takes place at the back of the foot. The inflammation of the tendon in the back of the ankle, known as Achilles Tendonitis, is a very common reason for discomfort. This is very common if you play sports that involve a lot of jumping or running on hard surfaces.

Your feet carry you through the day. If you are in pain, that can make it very difficult to do your normal activities. It's important to talk with a Arlington area podiatrist if you are experiencing any symptoms of heel pain. Dr. Ross of The Podiatry Center can help address your concerns and alleviate your heel pain. Call (703) 451-2977 today to schedule your initial consultation.

Read more about foot sprains and fractures here from the American Podiatric Medical Association.

This information is not meant as medical advice. It is provided solely for education. Our practice would be pleased to discuss your unique circumstances and needs as they relate to these topics.


The Podiatry Centers treat all medical and surgical foot pain, ankle pain and heel pain conditions. Licensed Arlington VA area Podiatrist, Dr. Paul Ross can help bring you foot pain and ankle pain relief.

Our Arlington, VA area podiatry office offer the most effective and state-of-the-art, quality podiatry care services with a smile to patients in our local community, including: Arlington VA, Fairfax VA, Bethesda MD, Springfield VA, Woodbridge VA, Annandale VA, Alexandria VA, Burke VA, Gaithersburg MD, Potomac MD, Silver Spring MD, Rockville MD and Chevy Chase MD.

Return to a pain-free life and get back to the things you love!


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Foot and ankle conditions can impact your life in many ways. Dr. Ross has written The Plantar Fasciitis Solution to help you make sense of your Plantar Fasciitis condition and provide hope that it is treatable. He has also authored My Damn Toes Hurt to provide a complete guide towards ending Hammer Toe pain. Download your free copies today before scheduling your appointment with our experts!
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