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Heel Spur and Physiotherapy
A heel spur is the formation of a bony hook that forms on the calcaneal bone in the heel, and can be rather painful. Unfortunately, this condition can be similar symptoms-wise to plantar fascitiis but they're not the same at all.
(Heel spur is a bone-related condition of the calcaneus bone whereas plantar fasciitis is related to the plantar fascia, a soft-tissue).
Causes of heel spurs
Heel spurs happens when calcium
deposits build up on the underside of the heel bone, a process that
usually occurs over a long time.
They are often caused
by strains on foot muscles and ligaments, which stretches and strains the plantar fascia, and repeated tearing of the membrane that covers
the heel bone.
Unfortunately...heel spurs are especially common among athletes whose
activities include large amounts of running and jumping.
Risk factors for heel spurs include:
- Abnormal walking gait patterns that causes abnormal/unequal stress on the heel bone, ligaments and nerves near the heel
- Running or jogging, especially on hard grounds/surfaces
- Poorly fitted shoes (or very worn out ones), especially those that don't provide enough arch support
- Being overweight
Symptoms of heel spurs
Heel spurs by itself usually doesn't lead to any symptoms.
BUT heel spurs can be linked to intermittent or chronic pain - especially pain, discomfort or aches in the heel while walking, jogging, or running if inflammation
develops at the location of the spur formation.
Generally, the cause of
the pain is not the heel spur itself but the soft-tissue injury and inflammation around and
associated with it.
Many patients often describe the pain of heel spurs and plantar
fasciitis as a stabbing knife or pin sticking into the bottom of their feet when
they first stand up in the morning, and this pain gradually morphing into a dull ache later in the day.
Patients also report that the same sharp pain returns after they
stand up after sitting for a prolonged period of time.
Physiotherapy Treatment of heel Spurs
Physiotherapy treatments of heel spurs are very similar to physiotherapy treatments of plantar fasciitis.
Before any treatments can start, we first need to diagnose (differential diagnosis) to tell if it's plantar fasciitis or heel spur.
Our senior physiotherapists will perform:
- medical history taking
- biomechanical tests
- review your X-ray and scan reports
Physiotherapy intervention may be a combination of:
- Decreasing Swelling and Inflammation: using a combination of cold therapy, retrograde massage, lymphatic drainage, ultrasound therapy, RICE method etc
- Joint, Muscles & Soft Tissue Management:
using a combination gliding, stretching, positioning, manipulation to decrease tightness, stiffness and decreased range of motion to increase range and natural movements. We may also employ deep tissue release to release tight knots in muscles.
Taping (eg using Rocktape) has been clinically and research-proven to be effective for
plantar fasciitis and heel spurs management. The taping spreads out force and load for the plantar fascia.
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Phoenix Rehab physio Services
Phoenix Rehab Group works with specialist
physiotherapists and rehab therapists who are highly
trained, qualified, experienced and passionate to provide high level of
expert care to our patients.
PHYSIOTHERAPY & PHYSICAL THERAPY
HAND THERAPY & SPLINTING
Patients who sustained injuries to their elbows, forearms, hands, wrists
(sprains and fractures) and fingers, and requires Hand Therapy to increase the function of their hand
following injuries or post-operations as well as custom made hand splints.
Commonly treated hand pain injuries includes
CLINICAL PILATES & WELLNESS PILATES
Clinical Pilates is a form of physical exercise that focuses on
- core stability
- flexibility and
It is a system of safe and effective exercises, which
meet specific individual needs, to treat a wide range of injuries
You may do Pilates as matwork or with the reformer or both, and every session will be customized 100% to your fitness, injury and tolerance.
TRADITIONAL CHINESE MEDICINE (TCM)
DEEP TISSUE RELEASE & SPORTS MASSAGE THERAPY
Sports and deep tissue release massage helps to increase nutrient-rich blood
flow to tired, tight and tense muscles to
- accelerate recovery and
- shorten downtime / recovery period required
It also prevents
muscles from scar tissue micro-tears (and potential ruptures), and increases muscle
Done regularly, it will keeps your muscles healthy and fit with body/movement-confidence. Read the benefits of regular deep tissue release therapy here.
All our allied health therapists and TCM physicians are fully insured and registered with Allied Health Professions Council (AHPC) and Traditional Chinese Medicine Board (TCMB).
See our entire team here with introductions and their specializations.
At the first session, our specialist physiotherapists will carry out a thorough
assessment, helping them to select the most appropriate treatment to
help you recover as well as provide treatment in the same session.
Follow up sessions are inline to provide
expert treatment for your pain as well as prescribing specific
exercises to reduce your risk of re-injury and giving you a long term
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