Heel spur - overview, symptoms
For those experiencing heel pain, a common suspect is a heel spur. Heel spurs are a calcium deposit that cause a bony protrusion on the underside of the heel bone. They're normally about a quarter of an inch in length.
Heel spurs occur due to long-term muscle and ligament strain. They're especially common amongst athletes who do a lot of running and jumping. The most common symptoms are pain, inflammation, or swelling at the front of your heel.
Heel spur treatment options
Physical therapy is a common choice for those suffering with heel spurs. Here at Rise, we first do an assessment of your entire body to determine the cause of the pain. Foot pain can be caused by a multitude of problems so the key is determining the root cause and then beginning treatment.
What does physical therapy treatment for heel spurs look like?
- Stretching the muscles in the lower leg and foot.
- Proper shoe education, insoles, and possibly taping to support the foot
- Strengthening the intrinsic muscles in the foot to be able to tolerate the high load that comes with being on our feet
- Hands on treatments or Treatments using tools such as ASTYM to loosen the affected tissue and promote healing and decreased pain
- Improving hip strength and stability to decrease the load on the foot
Our end goal is that you are able to walk away pain-free in the short term and also possess the know-how to avoid heel spurs in the future.
About Rise Physical Therapy
Hi, and welcome to Rise Physical Therapy.
Rise exists because we believe there is a demand for honest and ethical therapy that truly makes a difference in people's lives. After years of working in healthcare, we realized that the industry had lost it's focus on the patient. So we decided to start our own clinic and focus on providing our patients the very best in one-on-one physical therapy. We wouldn't have it any other way.
Thanks for swinging by the site, and we hope to see you soon.
Most common questions about physical therapy
1. What is physical therapy (PT)? – Physical therapists, sometimes called PTs, are experts in the musculoskeletal system, meaning we know your muscles, bones, joints, tendons, ligaments and how they operate as well as anyone. We play a critical role in the recovery and rehabilitation of the injured, hurting, or those suffering chronic conditions. Becoming a Doctor of Physical Therapy (the only type of PTs we hire at Rise), requires over seven years of education.
2. Is PT covered by insurance? – Almost all insurance plans give you an annual allowance of PT visits. For our current patients, that has typically meant a copay of around $15-$30/visit. Sometimes it’s lower, or even completely covered by insurance. Depending on your plan you might pay a bit more, such as when your plan has a higher deductible. If you are unsure, give us a call and our insurance experts can help you figure it out. You can reach us at (479) 442-7473.
3. Do you need a doctor’s referral for PT? – No referral is needed – you can come straight in to see us without having to go to your doctor. Years ago a referral was required, but studies like this showed it was dramatically more effective and cheaper for patients to be sent to PTs first. The state of Arkansas has not required them for over 20 years (since 1997).
4. Does physical therapy work? – The only question that matters. Here’s what a recent large study found: “In the year following their initial complaint to primary providers, the sample of people in the study who went to physical therapy directly spent an average of $1,871, compared to $6,664 for those who were first sent for an MRI. The patients who received physical therapy first were less likely to receive surgery and injections, and they made fewer specialists and emergency department visits within a year of primary consultation.” [link] So not only does it work, it saves you money over the long run.
5. How much does PT cost? – We actually went ahead and ran the numbers on this one. If you include all of our past patients, the average payment after insurance was $19.25. So anywhere from $15 – $30 is a fairly accurate estimate of how much you’d be looking at paying per visit. That said, some patients actually get PT completely covered by insurance so you may end up paying $0.
6. What is the difference between a PT and a chiropractor? – There are quite a few, but the biggest difference is in the way the professions approach the practice of medicine. Physical therapists strictly use evidence-based (scientific) treatments that are focused on healing the patient permanently rather than temporarily dulling pain. At Rise, we are all about educating you on how to treat and address your issues on your own with stretches and exercises. On the other hand, Chiropractors tend to focus on pain relief techniques like spinal manipulation (adjustment) that are performed on an ongoing basis. It just comes down to what you desire in a treatment.