Steroid shots for plantar fasciitis

I am a runner and I was fine last summer/fall. I didn’t run very much this winter and when I started back up my feet started killing me. My left foot especially in the heal area. I went to the podiatrist that preformed my surgery I had in 2009. He said the tissue is torn in my left foot. He advised me to stretch as much as possible as well as not going barefoot. It hasn’t helped and I got back from running 5 miles and took my shoes off. When I walked across my tile I felt something rip in the bottom of my left foot near the heal. It has been exrusiating ever since. Ice and tennis shoes with arch support have helped with the pain. What would you suggest? I am getting pretty desperate to find solutions so I can get back to running on a regular basis.

Healing from Plantar Fasciitis will take a commitment from you. You’ll need to commit to daily rest periods, icing, stretching and the daily wear of specialized orthotics. Some people find it hard to make the time or make the promise to themselves to do what they need to in order to recover. If you’re finding this a challenge, consider the fact that undertaking the work of treating your Plantar Fasciitis now at home could save you from having to take injections or undergo costly surgeries later. Your chances for recovery are extremely good, if you’re ready to make the commitment, and Heel That Pain is ready to help you, every step of the way .

My take on all this, and just my informed opinion from talking to the experts: Unless it’s pain so crippling that you can’t function – “the patient is completely shut down, as Dr. Davis puts it – get serious about self-cure. Really serious, including not just rigorous stretching and footwear improvements but eschewing barefoot (or in socks) walking, plantar fascia stretching (dorsiflexion) on side of the bed, etc. For at least six months. One doctor says he won’t even consider surgery unless patients have made a real “self-cure” effort for at least 20 months. But that’s just my take.

Steroid shots are a problem. They seem to work well for short periods and then wear off in a few months. Combine that with research that shows that these shots can cause tissue damage and it’s not surprising that doctors are testing new ways to treat plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a strong, taut band on the bottom of the foot that helps to support the arch. Where it attaches to the heel bone it can become chronically painful when there’s too much force yanking on the ligament. This excessive pulling at the heel area can be caused by flat feet, excessive weight gain, too much activity without preparation, or a host of other factors. As a result of the poor response many patients have with steroid shots, physicians are actively looking for better ways to treat chronically inflamed tendons and ligaments including the plantar fascia. Many doctors have begun to use plantar fasciitis platelet injections to try and solve the problem. In this therapy, platelets are concentrated from the patient’s own blood to create platelet rich plasma (PRP) and re-injected. A recent study actually performed a head to head comparison between heel pain steroid shots and  plantar fasciitis prp injections for heel pain. Forty patients were either randomly assigned to receive steroid shots or PRP directly into the plantar fascia. Ultrasound guidance was used to insure that the shots were making it to the right spot. The group treated with PRP shots had excellent results that were maintained at 6 months, while the steroid shot group had good results at three months that then deteriorated to fair results at 6 months. These results are consistent with what we see in the clinic in that steroid shots seem to work well for short periods and then wear off. The upshot? Ditch the steroid shots for your plantar fascia problem and try PRP!

Steroid shots for plantar fasciitis

steroid shots for plantar fasciitis

Steroid shots are a problem. They seem to work well for short periods and then wear off in a few months. Combine that with research that shows that these shots can cause tissue damage and it’s not surprising that doctors are testing new ways to treat plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a strong, taut band on the bottom of the foot that helps to support the arch. Where it attaches to the heel bone it can become chronically painful when there’s too much force yanking on the ligament. This excessive pulling at the heel area can be caused by flat feet, excessive weight gain, too much activity without preparation, or a host of other factors. As a result of the poor response many patients have with steroid shots, physicians are actively looking for better ways to treat chronically inflamed tendons and ligaments including the plantar fascia. Many doctors have begun to use plantar fasciitis platelet injections to try and solve the problem. In this therapy, platelets are concentrated from the patient’s own blood to create platelet rich plasma (PRP) and re-injected. A recent study actually performed a head to head comparison between heel pain steroid shots and  plantar fasciitis prp injections for heel pain. Forty patients were either randomly assigned to receive steroid shots or PRP directly into the plantar fascia. Ultrasound guidance was used to insure that the shots were making it to the right spot. The group treated with PRP shots had excellent results that were maintained at 6 months, while the steroid shot group had good results at three months that then deteriorated to fair results at 6 months. These results are consistent with what we see in the clinic in that steroid shots seem to work well for short periods and then wear off. The upshot? Ditch the steroid shots for your plantar fascia problem and try PRP!

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