San Francisco Podiatry Video

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Can I Run with Plantar Fasciitis?

Dear MyRunningDoc,

I am a runner who has been suffering with plantar fasciitis for several months. I tried couple of different things myself to get the heel pain to go away but it still continue to bother me. When I went to see my doctor, she told me that I had to stop running.

Can I run with plantar fasciitis? Will my heel pain get worse if I keep running? Or can I run with plantar fasciitis and still heal.

John H. 
San Jose, CA




Hello John,

Heel pain can be frustrating when you are a runner. It isn't that the heel pain is so debilitating that it stops you from running, but that you are often distracted by it, and concern that the problem will get significantly worse or translate into other overuse injuries.

Plantar fasciitis of course is the most common form of heel pain. But it isn't the only type of heel pain that happens in runners. The short answer is that if it is only plantar fasciitis, you can probably keep running without the problem getting worse. It is also possible to continue running and still heal your heel pain.

This all assumes that you have been correctly diagnosed, and have not been mis-diagnosed. If your doctor mistakenly diagnoses you with plantar fasciitis, when in fact have a calcaneal stress fracture (crack in the heel bone), or a partial rupture of the plantar fascia (a small tear in the plantar fascia), you will have to stop running for some period of time, depending upon the severity of the condition.

It is important to note that stopping running alone will not cure any of the above mentioned causes of heel pain. conditions. Many runners can self-diagnose their heel pain without ever seeing a doctor. But if you have any doubt about the accuracy of your diagnosis, or specifics about how to continue running while you have plantar fasciitis, you should seek a second opinion from a sports medicine podiatrist who specializes in the treatment of runners.

Dr. Christopher Segler is a 14-time ironman triathlon finisher and sports medicine podiatrist who specializes in the rapid treatment of running injuries. He performs remote consultations via Skype for runners and triathletes overseas who do not have access to Western medical doctors and running experts. You can learn more about running with heel pain at DocOnTheRun.com or learn more about plantar fasciitis at AnkleCenter.com



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