Heel spurs, also known as calcaneal spurs, are bony protrusions that form on the heel bone (calcaneus). They are caused by the buildup of calcium deposits on the heel bone, and can be a result of a number of factors, including overuse, injury, and certain medical conditions.
Symptoms of heel spurs include pain and tenderness in the heel, especially when standing or walking. The pain may be sharp and stabbing, or it may be a dull ache. In some cases, heel spurs can also cause inflammation and swelling in the heel.
Heel spurs are typically diagnosed through a physical examination and X-rays. In order to confirm the diagnosis, a healthcare provider may also order a CT scan or MRI.
Treatment options for heel spurs include rest, ice, and over-the-counter pain medication. Wearing proper shoes with good arch support and cushioning can also help to alleviate symptoms. In some cases, a heel lift or orthotic inserts may be recommended to redistribute pressure on the heel.
Physical therapy, stretching exercises, and ultrasound therapy may also be used to help alleviate pain and inflammation associated with heel spurs. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the spur.
It's important to note that heel spurs can take several months to heal and in some cases they may never completely go away. However, with proper treatment and management, the symptoms of heel spurs can be controlled and the individual can return to normal activities.
If you are experiencing heel pain and suspect that you may have a heel spur, it is important to seek the advice of a healthcare provider. They can help determine the cause of your pain and recommend the most effective treatment plan for your condition.