3 Ways To Treat Plantar Fasciitis Without Surgery

Plantar fasciitis occurs when the band of tissue on the sole of your foot becomes inflamed. There are lots of causes of plantar fasciitis, such as wearing the wrong shoes, stressing the feet with exercise, carrying extra body weight, etc. Your podiatrist can help you pinpoint the cause of your plantar fasciitis so that you can begin the right treatment plan. While people with severe plantar fasciitis cases may require surgical intervention, some people may be able to try less invasive approaches first. Here are three plantar fasciitis treatments.

Massage Therapy 

Massage therapy can be a great choice for mild plantar fasciitis. Massage therapy helps to reduce inflammatory cytokines, and it can increase mood-boosting and pain-relieving hormones like serotonin and endorphins. One study found that cross-friction massage, along with stretching the gastrocsoleus complex (calf muscles and the Achilles tendon), could reduce pain and improve range of motion in patients with plantar fasciitis. Another study also found that other massage modalities, like trigger point therapy, could help decrease pain and improve functional impairments caused by plantar fasciitis.

Pain-Relieving Injections

If massage therapy or over-the-counter medications aren't helping, your podiatrist might recommend foot injections, such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) or cortisone injections. During PRP, your doctor will inject your own platelets into the plantar ligament to accelerate healing times. If you have a lot of swelling and pain, your podiatrist might recommend cortisone injections, since they can reduce inflammation.

Percutaneous Ultrasonic Fasciotomy

Percutaneous ultrasonic fasciotomy is a bit more involved than other treatments, but it actually only takes a few minutes and is less invasive than major surgery. During this procedure, your podiatrist will take imaging tests to determine the location of damaged tissue in the sole of your foot. Once the imaging tests are done, your doctor will make a small incision and insert a needle-like probe. The probe's tip will produce ultrasonic energy, which then helps to break down any damaged tissue. Some podiatrists might opt for a percutaneous needle tenotomy, where small holes are just poked into the plantar fascia. The goal of this micro-trauma is to stimulate blood circulation and promote healing processes. Once your podiatrist is done, he or she will close the incision with a pressure bandage. This treatment is a great way to heal severe plantar fasciitis if other treatments haven't worked.  Some podiatrists may also opt for a percutaneous needle tenotomy.

Reach out to your podiatrist today for more information about plantar fasciitis treatments.