Heel Pain

We provide comprehensive treatment for all kinds of foot and ankle problems at Silicon Valley Podiatry Group. And one of the most common problems our patients need help with is heel pain.

Many of us will suffer from heel pain at one point or another in our lives, but that doesn’t mean it’s “normal.” No matter how old you are, how active you are, or what your medical history may be, heel pain is a sign that something is wrong, and that you need help to treat it.

Fortunately, heel pain treatment is something we specialize in at SVPG, with a wide variety of advanced treatment options to help you get back to full speed.

Heel Pain Treatment Starts with A Comprehensive Exam

Heel pain might seem simple, but it can actually be quite complex. The same basic set of symptoms—or at least a very similar set of symptoms—can apply to a wide range of diagnoses, including:

  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles bursitis
  • Nerve compression
  • Stress fractures
  • Stone bruise

On top of that, in order to develop the most effective treatment plan, we need to figure out what factors actually caused pain in the first place. Bad shoes? Training habits? Occupational realities? Structural anomalies with your feet itself? Any or all of these causes could be involved.

That’s why we take a comprehensive approach to treating heel pain. We not only look at the specifics of your existing condition, but also your lifestyle needs and goals when helping you select the optimal treatment plan.

And we also care deeply not only about relieving your heel pain, but about what happens afterward. We want to help you make sure that your heel pain doesn’t come back! Coaching people and helping them make smarter choices about their long-term foot care is a big part of what we do, too.

Heel Pain Treatment and Prevention

Some of the most common treatments for heel pain conditions include things like rest, icing, stretching exercises, padding, splinting, or cortisone injections. However, we also offer a variety of more advanced options for those who need it, including:

Orthotic Inserts
Orthotics are a highly effective treatment option for many of the most common heel pain conditions, and they are just as good at keeping heel pain from returning.

Orthotic inserts can alleviate many of the most common causes of heel pain by providing your feet with additional arch support and cushioning. Some custom models can even realign, reposition, or restrict abnormal motion to improve your foot and ankle biomechanics.

Now, most podiatry clinics offer custom orthotics, and you can buy prefabricated “orthotic” insoles for your shoes at almost any drug store or pharmacy. So what makes us different?

  • We carry our own line of medical-grade prefabricated orthotics, made specially for Silicon Valley Podiatry Group. These are of much higher quality than what you can find at the drugstore, often rivaling custom orthotics for a fraction of the price. About 80 percent of our patients who need orthotic inserts are well served by a high-quality, medical grade prefab.
  • For the 20% or so of cases that do require custom orthotics, we offer in-office digital foot scanning, and we’re also trained in making proper foot molds for people with especially high or low arches. This allows us to get the most precise measurements possible, so you get the best possible performance from your orthotics.

Platelet-Rich Plasma
More commonly known simply as PRP, platelet-rich plasma is a treatment that uses your body’s own platelets (small particles in blood) to naturally relieve inflammation and accelerate tissue healing. It’s already popular with celebrities and professional athletes, but it can absolutely help you, too!

During the treatment, we draw a small sample of your blood, then spin it in a centrifuge to separate the various components, platelets, which are loaded with growth factors and other proteins and nutrients your body needs to repair injured tissues.

We mix the platelets back in with a portion of the liquid blood (plasma), creating a solution that’s extremely dense in platelets. When that solution is re-injected into your painful heel or tendon, it begins working to ease your symptoms and repair the damage.

The appointment is only about 20 minutes, most people only require a single injection, and the long-term success rate is about 85 percent. And because it uses your body’s own biological material with no medications (apart from a topical anesthetic), it is extremely safe.

Footwear Advice and Coaching
Poor quality footwear is a major factor in many cases of heel pain. Runners often wear shoes that don’t fit their foot shape or pronation style. Professionals frequently try to wear shoes that offer no support or cushioning. The result, often times, is pain.

At Silicon Valley Podiatry Group, we’re passionate about helping our patients get in the right pair of shoes so they can enjoy their activities without heel pain. So when you see us, we’re happy to give you all the information and advice you need, including how to select the best athletic shoe, and even how to walk in heels and other fashionable dress shoes safely.

The good news is that surgery for heel pain is almost never required—especially due to the advanced orthotics and PRP therapy we can provide.

Heel pain surgery is usually only recommended if all conservative or minimally invasive treatments have been attempted and not been able to provide relief, which only happens in a small minority of cases.

Still, if surgery is required, you can rest assured that our team is trained in the most advanced, evidence-based techniques, and surgical success rates are extremely high. We will discuss all your options with you in detail so you can feel comfortable and confident with the procedure.

If your heels are hurting and you need help fast from a medical team that actually listens to you, considers all your needs, and offers the widest variety of advanced treatment options, that’s SVPG. To schedule an appointment with us at our San Jose office, please call (408) 358-2666.