How can physical therapy help foot/ankle pain?
Physical therapy can help to get rid of that annoying pain that comes with these common foot/ankle injuries:
Heel pain/Plantar fasciitis
The Orthopedic Section of the American Physical Therapy Association published clinical practice guidelines on best treatments for plantar fasciitis and found that evidence strongly suggests a combination of manual therapy and therapeutic exercises. A study published in JOSPT in 2017 reviewed records of patients sent to PT for plantar fasciitis found faster recovery time for individuals who received evidence-based physical therapy treatment.
Plantar fasciitis: Will physical therapy help my foot pain? J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2017; 47 (2): 56.
Ankle sprains are very common, especially with running or athletic activities. Pain and swelling typically resolve fairly quick, however >70% of people continue to have problems with the ankle even after the swelling is gone. It is very common to re-injure a sprained ankle. A study in 2013 in JOSPT found that manual therapy and supervised exercise leads to better recovery in individuals with sprained ankles. The study found the combination of the two provided better pain relief and improved function.
Cleland JA. Manual physical therapy and exercise versus supervised home exercise in the management of patients with inversion ankle sprain: A multicenter randomized clinical trial. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2013; 43(7): 443-455.
Achilles tendinopathy is very common both in athletes and non-athletes and can be very debilitating. Research discusses the use of isometrics, heavy slow resistance training, and eccentrics as treatment for achilles tendinopathy. The proper load can be determined following a physical therapy evaluation for each individual patient depending on severity/irritability of their symptoms. Current research continues to support eccentric exercise for chronic tendinopathy, although the exact mechanism by which repair/healing occurs is still debated.
O’ Neil S, Watson PJ, Barry S. Why are eccentric exercises effective for achilles tendinopathy? Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2015; 10 (4): 552-562.
If you have any of these injuries, schedule an appointment with me today to get help!!
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