To our readers coping with constant heel pain, Medical Mailbox shares this recent finding.
Inflammation of a thick band of tissue (called the plantar fascia) often causes persistent heel pain. In a preliminary study of 44 patients not helped by conventional therapies for plantar fasciitis, doctors report that all but two were pain-free within two or three weeks of a procedure called dry-needling followed by a steroid shot. During the procedure, doctors insert a needle into the area where the fascia connects to the heel bone. This creates a small amount of bleeding and activates blood platelets to help the tissue heal. The needle is then pulled back into soft tissue surrounding the fascia and used to inject a steroid. The promising data was presented by an Italian research team at the 2008 annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America held in Chicago.