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What is a Plantar Fasciitis Tear?

The plantar fascia is an extensive band of tough connective tissue stretching from the heel bone to the sole of your foot, connecting with its heel bone via ligaments. If injured, an injury to this band of connective tissue may result in lasting foot pain.

Resting, using arch supports, and taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication effectively relieve symptoms of foot problems. Engaging in activities like swimming, yoga, or cycling that don’t put extra stress on the feet could also be helpful.


Plantar fascia tears often feel like needle pricks in the heel or arch of your foot, intensifying when standing up after sitting or sleeping and subsiding when walking again. They may hurt more on hard surfaces and when climbing stairs; working or exercising could become increasingly challenging depending on how severe an injury is.

Your foot arch may have become flat and weak, with a noticeable gap or depression where fascia tears. Additionally, you may experience bruises or lumps on the bottom of your foot or heel and an urge to walk on tiptoes; snapping or popping noises may even occur as you move.

Plantar fascia tears typically result from exerting excessive strain on their feet. This could include repeated activities (like running or standing all day at work) or sudden increases in activity such as exercising. Tight calf muscles, poor footwear, or an increase in body weight could all play a part in leading to this condition.

Plantar fascia injuries range in severity from mild to severe. Chronic plantar fascia injuries may lead to complete rupture, requiring rest and non-weight bearing using crutches or boots to take pressure off injured fascia.

Your podiatrist can diagnose a plantar fascia tear based on history and physical examination alone; occasionally, an ultrasound or MRI examination may be needed to confirm their diagnosis.

Simple anti-inflammatory treatments such as rolling your foot over a cold water bottle or ice several times daily may help reduce swelling. Oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS, such as ibuprofen) may help alleviate pain and inflammation. When returning to exercise and activity gradually, a heel cushion or custom orthotics that support the medial arch can be helpful to ease the strain on the plantar fascia and speed recovery time.


The plantar fascia is a dense tissue band that runs from your heel bone to the base of your toes, supporting your foot’s arch, bones, and shock absorption systems. When this band tears, it causes pain when walking or standing – even simple tasks like getting out of bed in the morning can become impossible to complete due to pain in this region of your foot – which makes even everyday activities such as getting dressed difficult or walking after sitting for long periods.

Healthcare professionals can diagnose foot fasciitis by reviewing medical history and performing physical exams. Your doctor may ask you to stand or walk briefly so they can gauge stretch and pressure on your foot, while imaging tests such as an X-ray or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan could also show whether the fascia has become stretched or torn.

Your treatment plan could involve at-home remedies like resting, rolling your foot on a frozen water bottle, applying an ice pack several times daily, and regularly consulting a healthcare provider for further advice. They might suggest special splints that hold your foot and Achilles tendon in an extended position while sleeping to help reduce pain and promote stretching, as well as off-the-shelf or custom-fitted arch supports, called orthotics, that distribute weight more evenly across both feet; walking boots, canes or crutches may also help keep pressure off of one foot for some brief periods to protect it further from exerting too much pressure onto one foot.

Plantar fascia rupture is often the result of sudden trauma or a rapid increase in activity, including running, basketball, or working on your feet for prolonged periods. It’s especially likely among people with flat feet whose foot mechanics put more stress on the plantar fascia than others.

Most people with plantar fascia ruptures generally recover well with pain control, relative rest, and gentle plantar fascia stretching. Most can return to normal standing and walking within several weeks; however, high-impact sports that require quick direction changes or explosive power through their feet may take months of rehabbing before returning.


Once injured, most plantar fascia tears usually improve gradually with rest, ice, stretching, and light exercise. Patients may find nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (like ibuprofen ) useful in controlling pain and swelling; additionally wearing arch supports in your shoes, altering exercise routine, night splints that keep feet in flexed positions while sleeping may provide further assistance. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to detach the plantar fascia from the heel bone or realign the ligament.

Healthcare professionals can typically diagnose plantar fascia tears based on your symptoms and a physical exam, including pressing on the bottom of your foot to note whether pain decreases when flexing the ankle, pointing your toe, or bending the ankle. They may suggest further imaging or scans (X-ray or MRI scan) to make sure another issue, like stress fracture, isn’t contributing to heel pain.

Most people with plantar fasciitis find relief within a few weeks by following essential home treatment tips, including icing the affected area for 15-20 minutes several times daily, using a foam roller or self-massage device, wearing arch supports, replacing worn-out athletic shoes and stretching foot and calf muscles.

Plantar fascia tears may also be treated using injections of corticosteroid medication to reduce inflammation; multiple injections should not be performed, however, since repeated shots could weaken and rupture your plantar fascia. Platelet-rich plasma obtained from your blood may be injected directly into tender areas to promote tissue healing – ultrasound imaging helps guide needle placement during this procedure. Shock wave therapy uses high-energy sound waves to stimulate healing, though its efficacy is unreliable.

Surgery may be required in some rare instances to separate the plantar fascia from the heel bone and reposition its ligament, especially when other treatments have not proved successful. The procedure usually takes place outpatient with a sedative used. Ongoing therapy sessions must also occur post-surgery to help keep symptoms at bay; some individuals require up to two years for complete recovery from this type of surgery.


The plantar fascia is a vital piece of connective tissue along the bottom of your foot. It creates the arch by connecting your heel bone to your toes, helping you walk and run. Furthermore, the plantar fascia works closely with intrinsic muscles, fat pads, and joints within your foot to distribute force during activity and absorb shock caused by walking, running, or jumping. However, poor movement mechanics place repetitive strain on its tissues, resulting in damage such as pain and tears to this crucial structure.

Signs of a plantar fascia tear typically include heel or arch pain that first manifests during activity such as walking or stair climbing after being inactive for an extended period. It usually peaks when starting to walk after sitting or standing for extended periods before subsiding as your feet warm up and start moving again. Runners and those recently increasing exercise/activity levels more generally, especially those running on hard surfaces, are most prone to this condition.

Predisposing factors of plantar fasciitis include flat or cavus feet, tight Achilles tendon, and wearing inappropriate training shoes. The primary treatment for plantar fasciitis involves resting your foot by limiting walking/jogging on hard surfaces and utilizing an ice pack wrapped in a towel under it to reduce inflammation and pain while stimulating small muscle healing in your foot. Orthotics/arch supports may help distribute pressure evenly across both feet to relieve stress, offloading the plantar fascia for faster recovery.

It is also essential to maintain a healthy weight at work by taking regular breaks and doing foot and ankle exercises to stretch out calf muscles. A physiotherapist can assist in these techniques and recommend specific plantar fascia stretches and treatments.

Plantar fascia tears can be painful injuries that limit participation in activities you enjoy; however, early diagnosis and correct treatment are both treatable and preventable. If you’re feeling discomfort under your heel or in the arch of your foot, please get in touch with JACO Rehab for an assessment and treatment plan.