I am 46 years, and have been suffering from Plantar Fasciitis for the last one year. No painkillers, heat therapy or exercise has helped. Can you please suggest a remedy? Yogita Naik, Surat
Plantar fasciitis is a very common and irritating complaint both to the patient and the doctor because there is no easy or fast solution. Blood should be checked for diabetes, thyroid and uric acid because it tends to affect this subgroup the most. X-rays are of no therapeutic value. Initial treatment entails the wearing of extremely soft slightly raised (at the heel) shoes or slippers which must be worn at all times. Exercises to stretch the plantar fascia are very helpful in the early phases. Massaging the plantar fascia from the heel to the toes helps. Using a tennis ball and rolling your foot over it also helps. In difficult situations like yours, after a year, steroid injections are usually helpful. It may or may not give permanent relief. Surgery of plantar fascia release is needed in only 3-5% cases. Important to note: The earlier you treat plantar fasciitis, the better it gets. It should never be allowed to get chronic because it then takes longer to heal. Medications with collagen and mucopolysaccharides help to a certain extent too.
Dr Nirad S Vengsarkar, Orthopaedic Spine & Joint Replacement Surgeon