Plantar Fasciitis is a common condition that is thought to affect between 4 and 7% of the population. Causing pain around the heel and arch of the foot, typical treatments include rest, ice, and switching to more comfortable shoes. However, in some cases patients may need help from a specialist foot doctor to help eliminate the problem and manage the symptoms.
Recent research carried out by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, has revealed a more unique approach to treating the condition. According to the study, fat injections could be an effective way to ease the pain of Plantar Fasciitis.
So, how could fat injections work and what is the best course of treatment for this common complaint?
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
The Plantar Fascia is a band of tissue in the foot that helps to connect the toes and the heel bone. Plantar Fasciitis is a condition where the Plantar Fascia becomes inflamed, leading to pain in the arch and heel.
Common symptoms of the condition include:
- A stabbing pain in the bottom of the foot
- Difficulty walking around
- Increased pain after carrying out exercise
- Tightness in the Achilles tendon
- Swollen heel
The condition occurs when stress and tension cause small tears in the tissue. If it is constantly tearing or stretched, inflammation can develop.
Although it can occur in anyone, common risk factors for Plantar Fasciitis include age, obesity, foot mechanics, and certain types of exercises.
How could fat injections help treat Plantar Fasciitis?
A very small pilot study carried out at the start of 2022, indicates that fat injections could potentially be an effective treatment for Plantar Fasciitis. A total of 14 patients were included in the study, and each were treated with fat injections under local anaesthetic.
Results showed that the injections improved quality of life, reduced pain, and reduced the thickness of the Plantar Fascia. Fat was taken from the abdomen, before being injected into the foot. Interestingly, a significant reduction in pain was only seen in the patients at 12 months, rather than at six months.
The reason fat injections have proven successful at helping to treat the condition, is because it contains growth factors and stem cells. However, larger additional studies are needed to explore the benefits of the treatment, alongside potential side effects.
Plantar Fasciitis treatment options
Most cases of Plantar Fasciitis can be treated without medical assistance. Rest, ice packs, and physiotherapy are often enough to bring patients relief. However, for severe cases there are other options.
MBST (Magnetic Resonance Therapy), is one of the newest forms of treatment that can help to relieve the symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis. Renowned for its ability to repair and regenerate the tissues in the body, this natural treatment can help patients to achieve a better quality of life.
To find out more about MBST and whether it might be an ideal option to treat your Plantar Fasciitis, call 020 3282 7553 to book a consultation with MBST London today.