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What Are Heel Pain Causes?

Heel Pain Causes

If you have heel pain, you may be wondering what causes it. It could be Achilles tendonitis or Haglund’s deformity. It is important to understand what your specific condition is so you can treat it correctly.

Achilles tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis is a common condition that can cause pain in the back of your lower leg. It is caused by repetitive stress on the tendon. The tendons become inflamed and can develop bone spurs.

Symptoms of Achilles tendonitis include tenderness in the area, stiffness, and mild ache in the back of the heel. They usually begin after a long or strenuous activity. Pain may get better over time.

If you are experiencing pain, stop all activities that place pressure on the area. You can also use a painkiller to reduce inflammation. However, be sure to consult a health care provider before using any type of pain medication. Some medications can be harmful and can cause ulcers.

In severe cases, surgery may be needed. Nonsurgical treatment options are also available to provide pain relief.

Plantar fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a condition that causes pain in the foot. It is caused by micro-tearing of the plantar fascia. If the condition is left untreated, it can lead to chronic pain, weakness, and even a decrease in quality of life.

Plantar fasciitis is caused by repeated strain and overload. The plantar fascia is a fibrous band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes. Once it becomes inflamed, the body attempts to heal it through fibroblastic activity.

Repetitive movements can lead to small tears in the plantar fascia, leading to inflammation. Micro-tearing of the plantar fascia can invite growths to the heel bone, which are known as heel spurs.

Inflammation can also occur due to biomechanical imbalances, such as wearing shoes that do not provide adequate support. Using orthotics can improve walking and make the symptoms of plantar fasciitis more manageable.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS) is a common condition affecting the foot. It’s characterized by pain in the heel or the base of the foot, which typically aggravates with physical activity. In severe cases, it can extend up the back of the calf and into the knee. The symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome usually get better with rest.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome is often caused by a nerve compression, usually in the medial malleolus. Compression of the nerve may be caused by a small bump, bony prominence, or ganglion cyst.

Other causes include ankle fractures, a systemic hormone imbalance, and gout. Treatments for tarsal tunnel syndrome can be surgical or nonsurgical. Nonsurgical treatment may involve steroid injections into the tarsal tunnel and orthotic devices.

Surgery may be required if symptoms persist or do not improve with nonsurgical treatment. Tarsal tunnel syndrome usually goes away in as little as two weeks, but a patient may need to wait for six weeks before resuming manual work.

Haglund’s deformity

If you are experiencing pain in your heel, it is possible that you have Haglund’s deformity. This condition causes an enlarged bump on the back of the heel. It can be painful and may cause other symptoms, including bursitis and Achilles tendonitis.

Haglund’s deformity is most often caused by shoes that rub against the back of the heel. However, the deformity can also be a result of tight calf muscles. Therefore, wearing softer shoes that don’t restrict your ankle movement can help.

Wearing shoes with rigid heels can increase the amount of friction that occurs on the back of the heel. This can cause calcification and inflammation in the area.

Fortunately, the majority of cases of Haglund’s deformity can be treated conservatively. Depending on the severity of the condition, your doctor may recommend surgery. Surgery is a serious procedure and has its own risks.


If you have heel pain, chances are it is due to a condition called arthritis. Arthritis causes inflammation of the lining of the joints and is characterized by damage to the cartilage and bones.

There are a number of different types of arthritis. Some of the most common are rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disorder, while rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an immune-system disorder that can cause inflammation, bursitis, and tendonitis. It is most often found in the hands, but can also affect the feet. The symptoms typically involve pain and stiffness in the peripheral joints. In some cases, the condition is so severe that it can cause the destruction of one or more joints.

Ankle arthritis, the most common type of foot arthritis, affects more than 30 joints. It can make walking and standing difficult.


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