What is plantar fasciitis?
The sole of the foot is referred to as the plantar area. Plantar fasciitis is a chronic local inflammation of the "bowstring-like" ligament stretching underneath the sole, also referred to as the plantar fascia, that attaches at the heel.
What causes plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis is most commonly caused by repetitive strain injury to the ligament of the sole of the foot. Such strain injury can be from excessive running or walking, inadequate foot gear, and jumping injury from landing. Plantar fasciitis can also be caused by certain diseases, including reactive arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.
What are plantar fasciitis symptoms and signs?
Plantar fasciitis causes pain and tenderness of the bottom of the foot. The tenderness is usually toward the heel, but the entire sole of the foot can be affected. A sign of abnormal tension or tightness that can lead to plantar fasciitis is a bony prominence (heel spur) that develops where the inflamed plantar fascia attaches to the heel bone (calcaneus).
Plantar fasciitis can make walking and running difficult. It can make the foot feel particularly stiff and sensitive in the morning or when rising after sitting or getting out of a car. Plantar fasciitis makes it difficult to walk barefoot on hard surfaces. Sometimes the bottom of the foot can feel warm, swollen, and tender.
What is the prognosis of plantar fasciitis?
The prognosis for plantar fasciitis is usually very good. Plantar fasciitis generally resolves with the conservative measures described above. However, in some cases, the condition can evolve into plantar fasciosis, which responds to a different set of treatments than those used for plantar fasciitis.
Is it possible to prevent plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis can only be prevented by treating any underlying associated inflammatory disease and wearing optimal footwear, orthotic shoe inserts, and stretching.