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Heel Pain

Heel pain is discomfort or soreness that’s felt in the back of the foot, specifically in the heel. Heel pain can be caused by various factors, & the symptoms experienced may vary depending on the underlying cause as well as the individual. Symptoms of heel pain can vary based on the underlying cause, but they commonly include:

  • Pain: Persistent or intermittent pain & discomfort in the heel of the foot, is often felt as a sharp or dull ache.
  • Discomfort in the Morning: Pain and stiffness in the heel, usually when getting out of bed, or after periods of rest.
  • Swelling, Tenderness: Swelling or inflammation around the heel and may be tender to touch.
  • Pain with Activity: Participating in specific weight-bearing activities like walking, running, or standing can disrupt normal walking patterns & exacerbate discomfort.
  • Limping: Some individuals experiencing severe heel pain avoid putting too much pressure on the affected heel, leading to the development of a limp.
  • Limited Range of Motion: Heel pain may result in decreased flexibility & limited range of motion.

Here are some common causes of heel pain along with their associated symptoms:

Plantar Fasciitis:

Cause: Inflammation of the plantar fascia, which is a thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot.


  • Sharp pain at the bottom of the heel.
  • Stiffness & discomfort in the arch of the foot.
  • Pain improves with movement but worsens after prolonged activity.

Achilles Tendinitis:

Cause: Inflammation of the Achilles tendon, which connects the calf muscles to the heel bone.


  • Pain & tenderness at the back of the heel.
  • Stiffness in the Achilles tendon area, especially after long periods of inactivity.

Heel Spurs:

Cause: a bony outgrowth that forms on the underside of the heel bone. It develops in response to long-term strain on the foot’s ligaments and the muscles.


  • Pain & tenderness in the bottom of the heel, especially during physical activities.
  • Discomfort while walking or running.

Sever’s Disease:

Cause: Inflammation of the growth plate in the heel bone, commonly occurring in children and adolescents.

Symptoms: Pain experienced typically at the back of the heel.

Stress Fractures:

Cause: Tiny cracks in the bones of the foot, including the heel bone, due to repetitive stress & overuse.

Symptoms: Localized pain and tenderness.


Cause: Inflammation of the bursa sac that provides cushioning between the tendons, bones, & the muscles.


  • Pain and swelling at the back of the heel.
  • Discomfort worsens when pressure is applied.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome:

Cause: Compression of the tibial nerve as it passes through a narrow space behind the inner bone of the ankle.


  • Pain, burning, or tingling sensation at the back of the heel and ankle.
  • Discomfort that may radiate into the sole of the foot.

Nerve Entrapment:

Cause: Compression or irritation of nerves in the foot.


  • Sharp, shooting pain or numbness in the area.
  • Pain that worsens with certain movements and activities.


Cause: Inflammatory or degenerative joint condition affecting the joints around the heel.


  • Pain, stiffness, as well as swelling in the affected area.
  • Pain may be worse after long periods of rest or inactivity.