Heel Pain: Heel Spurs

Heel spurs are growths of bone that extends from the heel bone.  The spurs themselves have no feeling, but they extend from the heel bone into the soft tissue surrounding the bottom of the foot, causing inflammation and pain. They are commonly characterized by a sharp poking which is localized to the heel or underneath the heel.  The pain can become very severe and bruising may occur in some cases.  Pain is found to most commonly occur after prolonged periods of rest, when taking a step or when putting pressure on the heel.  In most cases, heel spurs occur in individual over the age of 40 due to sudden weight gain, improperly fitted shoewear, pronation, gout and rheumatoid arthritis.  There are many treatment options for heel spurs, such as heel pads, arch supports, orthotic therapy and anti-inflammatory medications. In some cases, surgery is recommended.