Surgeons say treat foot pain early

According to foot and ankle surgeons attending the 68th Annual Scientific Conference of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons in Las Vegas at the end of February 2010, heel and foot pain continues to be the most common reason patients seek advice and surgeons advise the best defense to keeping pain in control is early treatment.

Heel pain can have many different causes with the most common being plantar fasciitis. Conference speaker and South Carolina foot and ankle surgeon Michelle Butterworth, DPM, FACFAS explains that patients who most frequently suffer with heel pain are those who spend the majority of their day on their feet.

“Continuous standing or walking on a daily basis or even starting a repetitive activity, such as a new exercise routine, without proper shoes can put a lot of stress and strain on the ligaments in the foot, resulting in inflammation and pain,”

Dr. Butterworth adds, the good news is heel pain is treatable. “If treatment is sought early, all but a small percentage of patients suffering will experience relief with conservative therapies such as limiting activities, footwear modifications, anti-inflammatory medications, and stretching exercises,”

“The key to success in eliminating the pain is early treatment; heel pain can turn chronic and debilitating if not cared for promptly by a foot and ankle surgeon.”

For more information on heel pain, visit American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons’ consumer health web site

The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons is a professional society of over 6,000 foot and ankle surgeons. Founded in 1942, the College’s mission is to promote research and provide continuing education for the foot and ankle surgical specialty, and to educate the general public on foot health and conditions of the foot and ankle.

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