Clearwater, Tampa, St Petersburg, Florida
Plantar fasciitis is a common source of foot pain. The pain may sometimes be diffuse and be confused with the ankle pain. The plantar fascia is a fibrous aponeurosis (a thick cord-like tissue). It originates off the calcaneus or heel bone and fans out to attach to the plantar surfaces of the phalanges bones (foot bones).
What causes Plantar Fasciitis:
- It may an inflammatory condition causing the foot pain and tenderness at the attachment to the calcaneal or heal bone
- It may be along the mid or distal aspect of the fascia, as it connects to the foot bones or in the middle of the heel.
- Select arthritis that are not degenerative in nature, such as the zero negative spondyloarthropathies (Reiter’s disease or ankylosing spondylitis).
Plantar fasciitis is a common source of foot pain in athletes, especially ones who compete in running athletics. However, plantar fasciitis may also been seen in over-weight non-athletes
The plantar fascia may either be caused by an inflammatory process or there may be an underlying degenerative process, such as seen in tendinopathies where there is thickening, scarring and abnormal collagen formations. Rupture of the plantar fascia may occur with an extremely forceful injury, usually in the mid portion of the fascia.
Plantar fasciitis is sometimes confused with a bone spur that is on the calcaneus, but this would be an incidental finding. It is diagnosed with careful physical examination. Tears of the fascia and degeneration can be seen on an magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) study and ultrasound testing.
Conservative physical measures and modalities may help reduce the inflammation, especially in the milder cases that are due to repetitive stress. These measures would include rest, massage therapy, stretching, night splints, and physical therapy. If these do not reduce the inflammation, other measures such as cold therapy, orthotics, anti-inflammatory medications, and injection of corticosteroids would be the next step. In extreme cases, surgery may be appropriate.
Alternative Treatment for Plantar Fasciitis
However, if this chronic process is not responding or is creating scarring in the fascia, an alternative treatment to consider would be platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and stem cell therapy. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and stem cell therapy are regenerative medicine techniques which may regenerate tissues that are chronically irritated and inflamed or undergoing degeneration or scarring.
With platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy, the healing and growth factors in a person’s own blood are captured and injected into the injured area. This may help to heal the damaged tissue more quickly.
Additionally, stem cell technology may help regenerate damaged tissue. Stem cells can be processed from a person’s own fat cells or bone marrow. Once processed, the stem cells are directed into the injured tissue using a variety of techniques.
Platelet-rich plasma and stem cell therapy are innovative and cutting-edge treatment techniques that may help repair chronic or acutely damaged tendon and muscle problems.
If you suffer with plantar fasciitis and your current treatment plan leaves you wanting an alternative, perhaps a fresh set of experienced eyes can change your outlook. Since 1990, Dennis M. Lox, M.D has applied his personal interests in sports medicine, cutting-edge regenerative medicine and chronic pain management to helping patients increase their quality of life. Contact us for an appointment at 727-462-5582.
Dennis M. Lox, MD, and the Florida Spine Center serve patients within the greater Tampa Bay area, including Clearwater, Tampa and St. Petersburg, as well as all of Florida and the US.
All statements, information or opinions provided by this website are provided for educational purposes only. We do not diagnose nor treat through this website or by telephone. As you consider any treatment, discuss them with your physician.
Regarding platelet-rich plasma or stem cell therapy: Neither statements nor treatments have been evaluated by the FDA. We do not claim that these treatments work for any listed or unlisted condition. Patient testimonials offer only the patient’s impression of how a therapy worked for them – individual results will vary; results are not guaranteed nor warranteed. As you consider any treatment, discuss them with your physician.