We are constantly amazed by the amount of pain our patients have endured and the number of years they have suffered before finally seeking help. With nearly three decades of helping people in Hermiston, Dr. Donald Carlson is committed to finding pain-relief solutions that work for each patient. Whether you are on your feet all day at Lamb Weston or the Wal-Mart distribution center, or you have been sidelined from your goal of running a half-marathon, Dr. Carlson will identify the root cause of your pain and develop a treatment plan that is affordable and effective and fits into your regular routine.
Common Causes of Foot and Heel Pain
No body part works harder than the human foot. Bearing our weight all day, supporting the additional weight of the things we lift and carry, pounding the pavement as we exercise—our feet take a beating every day. And with 26 bones, 33 joints, and over 100 muscles, tendons, and ligaments, a lot can go wrong. However, we find in our practice that most of our patients are suffering from one of the following sources of pain:
- Plantar fasciitis. Intense pain in your heel, particularly when you first wake up in the morning, is a symptom of plantar fasciitis. This condition is often caused by standing for long periods or physical activity in improper footwear.
- Hammertoes. Bending of the joints so that the toe resembles a hammer is a characteristic of this common condition. It can occur in any toe other than the big toe and causes corns, calluses, and difficulty fitting into shoes. Non-invasive options may be available if the condition is treated early.
- Achilles tendonitis. The Achilles tendon runs along the back of the heel and is essential for a normal walking pattern. Seeking treatment as soon as possible after you first notice pain and swelling above the heel is vital to preventing serious injury.
- Bunions. A bunion is identified by a bump on the side of the foot at the base of the big toe, but it is not a growth or bone spur. Instead, the joints of the big toe are out of alignment, causing this painful disfigurement. Early intervention with proper footwear and padding could prevent the need for surgery.
- Neuromas. A thickening of nerve tissue at the base of the third and fourth toes is known as Morton’s neuroma and can cause tingling, numbness, and pain in the ball of the foot. Neuromas are often associated with other conditions such as bunions and hammertoes. The sooner the underlying cause is treated, the better.
While these are some of the more common conditions we see in our practice, there is a range of other issues we diagnose and treat. If you are suffering from pain anywhere in your foot or ankle, come see us as soon as possible.
Effective Treatment for Heel and Foot Pain
Once we have diagnosed the cause of your foot pain and determined the severity of the condition, we will work with you to develop a treatment plan to relieve the pain. Usually, the sooner we see you after you first notice pain, the more conservative we can be in treating it. Dr. Carlson is committed to providing the latest, cutting-edge treatments and procedures but never recommends an invasive or costly treatment if it is not necessary. Treatment options include:
- Conservative measures. When a condition is caught early, padding, stretching, icing, and anti-inflammatory medications can be sufficient to relieve pain.
- Shoes and orthotics. Recommendations for proper footwear and custom orthotics can allow you to live pain-free with a heel or foot condition for many years.
- Regenerative amniotic injections. Regenerative medicine is a field of medicine that seeks to restore missing or damaged tissue to allow a return to normal, pain free function.
- Musculoskeletal ultrasound. We use musculoskeletal ultrasound to dynamically visualize foot and ankle anatomy and provide a quick and accurate diagnosis. We can also perform ultrasound-guided injections in our office to ensure treatment is delivered exactly where it is needed.
- Innovative therapies. Dr. Carlson is always seeking new treatment options and offers his patients the latest podiatric medical advances.
- Surgery. As a last resort, you might need surgery to correct a painful foot or ankle condition. Dr. Carlson will always try non-invasive measures first but is also skilled at surgical correction for bunions, hammertoes, bone spurs, and more.
Cutting-Edge Care With Compassion
Dr. Carlson and his whole team at Hermiston Family Foot Clinic are dedicated to providing the best possible care to relieve your pain and get you back to work and recreation. If you are experiencing heel or foot pain, contact us today to schedule an appointment. You don’t have to suffer another day in pain!