Heel spur and injections


In earlier days heel spur/ fasciitis plantaris was often treated with injections with corticosteroids/cortisones. Currently this treatment is applied much less.

Cortisones are an artificial variant of the same steroid that is producted by the human body. Usually it is produced in our body under stress situtions, with an anti-inflammatory effect. The artificial variant is mainly used with athletes to treat tendon inflammations, like plantar fasciitis of course, but also achilles tendinosis.

When performed, an injection is given right on top of the inflammation of the plantar fascia. The injection can be extremely painful, as it is delivered right on top of the heelspur, close to the bone. After the injection rest is needed to prevent damage to the surrounding tissue. If it works, the effect can be almost immediate, but it does not always work, and if it does, the effect can be temporarily, requiring repeated injections. Problem is that the corticosteroids also weaken the tendon tissue, so a worsening effect can sometimes occur.

Because of these negative effects doctors are usually more cautious when it comes to performing injections. In some rare cases complete ruptures of the fascia have been reported, which is why you should never apply more then 3 injections in total.

Still though, if all other options fail, this can be a cure that sometimes works.