Heel spurs, caused by an excessive bony growth on the heel, can lead to a condition called plantar fasciitis. In this condition, the ligament attached to the foot, known as plantar fascia, gets pulled away from the heel bone. It can cause unbearable heel pain. However, one must remember that heel spurs, also called calcaneal spurs, and plantar fasciitis are two different medical conditions, though related to each other. Around 70% of the patients suffering from plantar fasciitis report to have calcaneal spurs, however, 50% of the people having calcaneal spur do not have plantar fasciitis.
Since these two medical conditions are closely related and both of them cause heel pain, it is very essential to correctly diagnose the right problem. Calcaneal spurs can be diagnosed with the help of X-Rays. There are some evident heel spur symptoms that can also be helpful in determining if the person is suffering from spurs.
The most prominent heel spur symptom is excruciating pain in the heel. Patients have reported that they experience intense pain in the heel when they take the first few steps in the morning. Some even wake up with tender feet. The pain, though unbearable, recedes with more you walk. However, it persists to occur every morning. The pain is of such high intensity that it can make walking and climbing the stairs extremely difficult activity. While in worse cases it can immobilize you.
Along with the prominent and most common symptom of heel pain, there are few secondary heel spur symptoms as well that can help a person to identity this medical condition. These symptoms include corns on the feet and calluses that occur due to the use of additional padding to support the heel. Some patients have revealed that they experience redness, inflammation and bruises as well. If you are showing any of these symptoms, it will be better to consult your doctor as soon as possible. Such medical conditions often get ignored and when they are heeded to, it is too late.
Heel spurs can be treated medically. Surgeries,and use of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are common procedures to treat this medical condition. However, there are other methods as well that can provide you at least some relief. These procedures include: performing exercises and stretches designed to relax the tissues around the heel bone, using shoe inserts and night splints and applying ice packs on your heel.