When Is It Worth Considering Surgery For Your Plantar Fasciitis?

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There is a surgical procedure to address plantar fasciitis. It involves making an incision in the plantar fascia to relieve the pressure it is placing on the surrounding structures. Once the plantar fascia is released, pain tends to subside. Unfortunately, though, this surgery does come with a significant recovery period, and the healing period can be quite painful. So, podiatrists do not typically recommend surgery as a first-line treatment for plantar fasciitis. They prefer to use conservative therapies, like stretching, rest, and NSAIDs, when possible.

With that being said, though, sometimes surgery is the best option. Here are some situations in which it's often worth considering surgery for plantar fasciitis.

It's ruining your athletic career

Are you a serious college athlete who only has one or two years of eligibility left? Or maybe you're a professional athlete with a contract. It can take months of conservative therapy to heal from plantar fasciitis, and sometimes there is a relapse or two that extends the recovery. If you simply do not have this time to spare, you may want to look into surgery. While it will cause some pain and you'll be out a while, you may be back on the field sooner than with conservative therapy. 

You've had it again and again over the years

Does your plantar fasciitis keep coming back? Maybe you heal and work out injury-free for a few months, but then your arch starts aching again. If recurring plantar fasciitis is plaguing you, then having surgery often makes sense. It's a more permanent solution that may allow you to finally work out more consistently for more than a month or two.

You've already had cortisone injections

Cortisone is a steroid that relieves inflammation and speeds healing. Getting a shot of cortisone directly in an injured tendon or ligament can really help that tissue heal. If you've already tried this and it did not do much, if anything, for your plantar fascia, then that's a sign you should consider surgery. Cortisone shots work pretty well, and if they did not work on your plantar fasciitis, that's a sign you have a fairly serious and stubborn case.

Plantar fasciitis can make it difficult to even walk across the room in the morning, but you don't have to go on living with this pain. Talk to a podiatrist to learn more about your treatment options, up to and including surgery. For more information on plantar fasciitis relief, contact a professional near you.