Calcaneal spur / Heel Bone Spur
A bony growth that appears on the underside of the heel bone (calcaneus) is called a calcaneal spur, also referred to as a heel spur. It typically develops where the heel bone and the plantar fascia, a broad band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, meet.
Calcaneal spurs are often brought on by the plantar fascia experiencing repeated strain or tension, which can result in inflammation and the development of a bony outgrowth. They are most frequently linked to plantar fasciitis, a condition that irritates and inflames the bottom of the foot and heel.
Causes of Calcaneal Spur | Heel Bone Spur:
A calcaneal spur / Heel Bone Spur is commonly associated with certain risk factors and conditions that stress the plantar fascia. Some common causes of calcaneal spurs include:
- Plantar Fasciitis: Plantar fasciitis, a disorder that causes inflammation and microscopic tears in the plantar fascia, is the most typical cause of calcaneal spurs. While the body tries to repair itself, this may result in the development of a spur.
- Overuse: Running and jumping are examples of repetitive movements that place stress on the heel and foot. This microtrauma to the plantar fascia can result in the development of a calcaneal spur / Heel Bone Spur
- Poor Foot Mechanics: The chance of developing a calcaneal spur is increased by flat feet, high arches, and other foot deformities that cause inappropriate stress and tension on the plantar fascia.
- Obesity: Being overweight or obese can put more strain on the plantar fascia and increase the likelihood of developing a calcaneal spur by increasing pressure on the feet.
- Aging: A calcaneal spur is more prone to form as we age because the body is less able to maintain and repair tissues.
- Wearing Improper Footwear: A calcaneal spur can become more likely if your shoes don’t offer enough support or cushioning.
Symptoms of Heel Bone Spur:
Calcaneal spurs do not always cause symptoms, and some people may have them without even knowing it. However, when symptoms do occur, they typically include:
- Pain in Heel: The most common symptom of a calcaneal spur is pain in the heel or bottom of the foot, which can be dull or sharp and may worsen with activity.
- Swelling: In some cases, a calcaneal spur can cause swelling in the heel or around the affected area.
- Stiffness: People with a calcaneal spur may experience stiffness or a limited range of motion in the foot or ankle.
- Tenderness: The affected area may be tender to the touch, particularly when pressure is applied.
- Difficulty Walking: Severe pain or stiffness in the foot can make it difficult to walk or bear weight on the affected foot.
Physiotherapy treatment of calcaneal/Heel Bone Spur:
Physiotherapy can be an effective treatment for calcaneal/Heel Bone Spur and is often recommended as a first-line treatment before more invasive options are considered. The goals of physiotherapy for calcaneal spurs are to reduce pain, and inflammation, and improve mobility and function.
Some of the common physiotherapy treatments for calcaneal spurs include:
- Cryo therapy or Thermotherapy.
- Stretching Exercises: Stretching exercises can help to loosen up the plantar fascia and ease pain by strengthening and stretching the muscles and tendons in the foot and calf. Examples include calf stretches and plantar fascia stretches.
- Manual Therapy: Muscle tension can be decreased and joint mobility can be increased with the use of manual therapy techniques like massage and mobilization.
- Taping and Bracing: By taping or bracing the foot, the plantar fascia can be supported and relieved of strain, which helps reduce pain and inflammation.
- Ultrasound Therapy: In ultrasound therapy, sound waves are utilized to promote tissue healing and reduce pain and inflammation.
- Custom Orthotics: In order to relieve pain and ease pressure on the plantar fascia, custom orthotics can support and cushion the foot.
- Shockwave therapy.
- Laser therapy.