Heel Spurs

A heel spur is a bone growth on the back or bottom of the heel, also known as the calcaneus. As the name implies, it may be “spur” shaped, or pointed. While some heel spurs may be asymptomatic, others can cause a considerable amount of pain and discomfort. Heels spurs can occur with plantar fasciitis, an inflammation of the stretchy tissue, or fascia, that runs along the bottom of the foot and attaches at the heel. They may also be associated with diseases like arthritis, reactive arthritis, or ankylosing spondylitis, but spurs can also occur on their own. A heel spur can be diagnosed by a health care professional based on the past history and location of pain, and can be confirmed by an X-ray. Since heel spurs are often associated with inflammation, reducing that inflammation can also reduce the pain. Ice, anti-inflammatory medications, and injections of the steroid cortisone can all be helpful. Using orthotics, or shoe inserts, can also help reduce the pressure on spurs. Well-cushioned, supportive shoes can also help reduce heel pain. Occasionally, heel spurs are not well-managed by conservative treatments, requiring surgery, but this is infrequent. Since heel spurs and inflammation go hand-in-hand, reducing inflammation and treating any underlying inflammatory diseases can prevent heel spurs from occurring.

Key Points:

  • 1Heel spurs and plantar fascitis can be caused by reactive arthritis.
  • 2Doctors diagnose patients with heel spurs by the patient explaining the pain and where it is located.
  • 3Treating inflammatory diseases can prevent heel spurs, otherwise nonsurgical treatments will successfully treat the issue.


Heel spurs at the back of the heel are frequently associated with inflammation of the Achilles tendon (tendinitis) and cause tenderness and pain at the back of the heel made worse while pushing off the ball of the foot.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators.The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.
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HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators. The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

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