What You Should Know About Heel Spur Surgery
Heel pain ranks high on the list of the most painful conditions that you can ever go through, and you should never wish to have to deal with it. The pain is in most cases a result of plantar fasciitis or heel spur syndrome.
While plantar fasciitis results from straining the plantar fascia ligament that runs along the bottom of your feet, the heel pain from a heel spur is due to an excessive accumulation of calcium on your heel.
While surgery is not always necessary to treat a heel spur, if all the other remedies fail, it is the last and only option. But, before you go under the knife to treat or remove the heel spur there are some essential things that you need to know about the surgery. They include the process that you will have to go through, the recovery time and the possible complications.
The Heel Spur Surgery
Plantar fasciitis and heel spur can get better with some rest and through non-surgical management. But, where surgery is the only option the surgeons will perform it by making an incision on the side or bottom of your heel. After making the incision, the surgeon will then identify the plantar fascia ligament and cut it free from the bone.
Experienced surgeons will only use “feel” to identify the plantar fascia ligament, but many others will prefer to use the modern "Endoscopic Plantar Fascia Release" method. This modern surgery procedure will entail inserting an arthroscopic camera after making the incision on the heel and using it to locate and identify the plantar fascia ligament before cutting it.
There are three different procedures that you can get when going for the heel spur surgery which are:
- Endoscopic Plantar Fasciotomy: This operation is the modern version of heel spur surgery, and it entails detaching the entire plantar fascia ligament to relieve the tension. And it is also the version of the heel spur surgery that makes use of an arthroscopic camera.
- Inferior Calcaneal Exostecomy: For this surgery, the surgeon will just remove the heel spur itself and not the entire plantar fascia ligament.
- The third procedure is one that entails only detaching a portion of the plantar fascia
Once you get one of the three surgeries above the surgeons will in most instances finish by placing you on a post-operative cast or shoe.
Heel Spur Surgery Recovery Time
Most patients can walk on the foot after the surgery, but the doctors will advise them to limit their activities. Although the heel spur surgery recovery time depends on the particular procedure that you get, in most circumstances it will take less than a month for the patient to be ready to go back to work. But, if your profession can allow you to work with a cast you can resume your duties in as little as one week.
Some surgeons will prefer to protect the patient’s feet with a cast for a couple of weeks, and others will also advise them to use crutches. And once the sutures are removed (after 10 to14 days) you can wash the problematic foot. Generally, it will take between 3 and 4 weeks for most people to walk correctly (or at least something close to normal).
Are There Any Possible Complications
Like any other minimally invasive surgery, there are some possible complications that you might encounter when getting the heel spur surgery. But, the heel spur operation has a very high success rate, and so few things can go wrong.
If the patient walks on the foot a lot after the procedure, the soft tissue around the wound is likely to get damaged. And this can cause a lot of pain on the top and outside part of the foot. Another possible complication is infections, and in most cases, it will occur when the wound gets wet while you still have the sutures. The best news is that these complications are avoidable and easy to deal with by giving the foot some good post-surgery care.
A heel spur can be quite painful, and it can even prevent you from doing your usual activities. And if your heel spur gets to the point where you have to go for surgery you will end up using a lot of cash and wasting time. Luckily, there are some things that you can do to prevent heel spur surgery and ensure you do not need to take time off your busy schedule for recovery.
Simple things like wearing shoes with a proper fit, maintaining a healthy weight and not overusing your feet by standing, walking or running for too long can be helpful. Sometimes doing these things can be enough to help you deal with your heel spur so that you will not need to go for surgery.