Current therapeutic approaches for plantar fasciitis
Nicolò Martinelli, Carlo Bonifacini, Giovanni Romeo
Department of Ankle and Foot Surgery, IRCCS Galeazzi Orthopaedic Institute, Milan, Italy
Abstract: Almost 1 million Americans are affected by plantar fasciitis (PF), which is the commonest cause of chronic heel pain. This condition is often managed conservatively, and many rehabilitation protocols, some with the aid of orthoses, have been adopted, with good-to-excellent clinical results. Although most cases of chronic PF can be successfully managed with a conservative approach, alternative treatments, including high-energy shock wave therapy and corticosteroid injections, are commonly accepted as second-line treatment when traditional conservative therapy fails. However, surgery is still an important mode of treatment. Recently, new minimally invasive surgical techniques that offer numerous advantages (faster recovery time, early weight-bearing, lower postoperative pain) over standard surgical approaches have been proposed, with good results and low complication rates. The purpose of this review is to report new conservative and surgical techniques for the treatment of PF. A literature search for articles about plantar fasciitis was conducted on the PubMed database in order to identify publications addressing the treatments of PF. The literature suggests that, initially, traditional conservative treatments consisting of rest, oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, foot orthotics, and stretching exercises can be tried for several weeks. In patients with chronic recalcitrant PF, extracorporeal shock wave therapy or corticosteroid injection can be considered. Surgery (minimally invasive techniques) should be considered only after failure of the conservative treatments.
Keywords: heel pain, surgery, plantar fasciosis
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