Heel Pain is a very common condition. In active, growing children, the most likely cause is Sever’s Disease. This is inflammation of the growth plate at the back of the heel bone on which the Achilles Tendon attaches.
In adult feet the most common cause is swelling and degeneration of the plantar fascia which spans and supports the arch of the foot. It attaches to the base of the heel where a bony spur may form.
Contrary to popular belief, it’s not the spur but inflammation from tears in the fascia that causes pain.
In the majority of cases relief can be achieved by ice, specific strengthening exercises for the muscles which support the arch, and supporting the feet in a stable position and eliminating excessive movement with orthotics and good, supportive shoes.
Surgical intervention is very rarely required, unless there are complicating factors such as nerve entrapment or rarer conditions. These need to be excluded by careful clinical examination and sometimes ultrasound or MRI examinations to improve the efficiency of treatment.