If you think heel spurs are little silver jangly things cowboys wear on their boots, this page is for you.
Heel spurs are bone outgrowths on the heel that can cause a considerable amount of discomfort and heel pain when it rubs on tendons and nerves.
While bone spurs can occur on just about any bone, they're quite common on the heels because of the constant friction and pressure.
Heel spurs and bone spurs are the body's way of trying to repair itself by building extra bone.
They can occur with age, in response to overly tight ligaments, as a result of sports or dancing, from ill-fitting and high-heeled shoes (known as a “pump bump”), and from added pressure caused by obesity.
Heel spurs are also somewhat common in patients with plantar fasciitis, when the ligament attaching the calf muscles to the foot becomes tight and pulls on the heel.
Patients with heel spurs often complain of heel pain and swelling. Spurring may also lead to painful corns and calluses which will worsen over time if left untreated.
We will conduct a thorough examination of your feet, including an in-office diagnostic ultrasound (a real live video of inside your foot), digital X-rays, and a comprehensive gait analysis.
We will examine the kind of shoes you typically wear and discuss your lifestyle and level of activity, which helps us determine the root cause of the problem and rule out any other potential conditions.
If you have a condition such as plantar fasciitis that is causing bone spurs, we will take steps to treat that first.
Treatment options for bone spurs can include rest, elevation, icing, stretches, anti-inflammatory medications, laser therapy, orthotics, a change of shoes, and corticosteroid injections to decrease pain and swelling.
They can also be surgically removed, but this is only done as a last resort after other more conservative treatments have been used.