Summer is finally here! Out come the summer athletes, weekend warriors and even the average folk that spend time cutting the grass or gardening. One of the more common injuries we see during the summer months is plantar fasciitis. We will see posts on social media asking for treatment advice. All the advice comes with good intent. The intent is to help someone hurting. Some advice is better than others. Some advice is just flat out wrong. Some advice is just humorous. Below we will post 5 myths about plantar fasciitis.
1. The Real Name Isn’t Plantar Fasciitis: Doctors used to think that plantar fasciitis was an inflammatory condition. The “itis” in the word fasciitis literally means inflammation. The old theory is that inflammation would occur at or near the attachment of the plantar fascia due to excessive strain/force imparted through the soft tissues of the area. Over the past decade, research has confirmed that this theory is WRONG! Repeated studies have found NO INFLAMMATION in the plantar fascia. Research confirms that degenerative changes to the tissue have occurred (1, 2). Biopsies performed at the time of surgery combined with diagnostic ultrasound studies show long standing degenerative changes to the tissues of the plantar fascia WITHOUT INFLAMMATION. This new information has largely been ignored by medical professionals (medical doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors, physical therapists, athletic trainers, podiatrists, etc.) and by the sports/recreation community. The recommendation for anti inflammatory medication (Motrin, Advil, Aleve, Aspirin, Celebrex, Viox, Indomethacin, Toradol, oral steroids, etc.), steroid injections, and even ice may not be the best treatments for degenerative conditions. These treatments attempt to limit inflammation; however, inflammation is not the real culprit. Actually, we may want to induce inflammation and induce more blood flow to the area to jump start the healing process. Treatments that induce inflammation and blood flow to the area include deep tissue massage, Graston, Active Release Techniques, shock wave therapy, dry needling, acupuncture, heat, laser therapy, and PRP injections). So, the real name isn’t plantar fasciiits. The real name should actually be plantar fasciosis or plantar fasciopathy.
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