Dr Mark Nelson
Foot & Ankle Specialist
Foot and Ankle Medical Information
Welcome to one of the most comprehensive sources of foot and ankle medical information on the internet. This section contains links to many articles and websites that have medical information about foot and ankle problems. There are also links to podiatry-related information and general medical information. We will continue to add new topics and improved information to this website, so remember to check back again in the future.
Click the underlined links listed below to view the information, then click the "back" button on your browser to return to this webpage. Some links will take you off this website. If you have difficulty finding the information you are looking for, try the Search This Site webpage or the Google Search at the bottom of this page. Please read the disclaimer at the bottom of the page.
Remember to visit our online Foot Care Store for items such as orthotics (arch supports), anti-fungal medications, corn pads, night splints, heel cushions, infrared therapy, ionic air purifiers and much more.
Bookmark this website for easy future reference. Click here to return to the Home Page and Directory
Foot & Ankle Disorders - General Topics
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Surgery
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Heel Pain / Arch Pain
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Bunions
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Hammertoes
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Toenail Fungus
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Pain in the Ball of Foot
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Diabetes
Foot & Ankle Disorders - Ankle
Sports Medicine Foot Health Information
Shoe Lists - Recommended by AAPSM
Quarterly Newsletter from the ACFAS
Spring 2002 Issue - articles on foot pain, walking for exercise, diabetes,
flat feet in children.
visit our NEW Online
with hundreds of different footcare and healthcare products.
Dr Nelson's comments:
The best fitting and functioning type of arch support is a custom made prescription orthotic, which can be made by your podiatrist. Generally, for most people, I recommend trying a pre-made arch support before progressing to an expensive pair of custom made orthotics. Finding a comfortable and effective pre-made arch support can be difficult. There are hundreds of varieties on the market and that can make it confusing for customers. Due to the variations in people's foot shapes, foot problems and style variations in different products, there is no "one type fits all" arch support available. That's why DrNelsonClinic offers different brands and models like OrthoFeet, SuperFeet, WalkFit and PowerStep to choose among. Fortunately, for most people, I've found that the OrthoFeet BioSole gel self-molding orthotics work the best and fit almost everybody. Among the hundreds of pre-made arch supports I've seen and used, the OrthoFeet BioSole models give the best support and pain relief for people with plantar fasciitis and heel pain. It's by far my favorite model for people with heel pain, due in part to the higher arch and shock absorbing gel under the heel. Be aware that the standard OrthoFeet BioSole "sport" model is rather thick through the arch and it fits into athletic, work boots and walking shoes, but may not fit into a shallow shoe, like a dress shoe. If you want to use the OrthoFeet in a shallow shoe, like a dress shoe, then use the "thin-line" or "high heel dress" models. The "sport" model may also be too high in the arch area for people with very flat feet. For elderly or arthritic people and those that want extra cushioning and softness under the foot, while still getting extra support under the arch, try the OrthoFeet BioSole "soft" model. If you don't need extra arch support or heel pain relief and only want shock absorption and cushioning under the foot, try the OrthoFeet "ThermoFit" model. After you start using any brand of arch supports, remember to break them in gradually, because is will take some time for the orthotic and your feet to adjust to each other. I personally use the OrthoFeet BioSole sport model in my athletic shoes and have found them to be as effective and comfortable as my expensive custom prescription orthotics. But, it did take longer to "break-in" the OrthoFeet supports than my custom orthotics. If you don't have plantar fasciitis or heel pain or if you have a flat foot and can't tolerate an arch support with a higher arch, but still want great foot support to relieve foot fatigue and strain, you should also consider SuperFeet Synergizer orthotics, which are our most popular arch supports. SuperFeet Synergizer orthotics have been highly recommended by sports and outdoor publications such as Backpacker™ magazine.
Dr. Nelson's "Top 10" Tips for Treating Plantar Fasciitis (aka - "heel spurs")
1) Wear a
custom-made prescription orthotic (best treatment) or a
high quality pre-made type
arch support, like Orthofeet BioSole.
- *very important*
2) Use a plantar fasciitis night splint, while sleeping or sitting down to gently stretch the plantar fascia and prevent it from tightening. - *very important*
3) Do "runner's stretches" (or other stretches) to stretch the back of the calves and the arch of the foot. - *very important*
4) Stretch the arch of the foot in bed before getting out of bed in the morning.
5) Don't run, jog or use stair climbers until the pain resolves. Wear supportive, cushioned, "athletic" type shoes.
6) Apply ice to the arch and heel after being active on the foot.
7) Consider taking anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), if you can tolerate them, but be cautious of possible dangerous side effects.
8) Don't climb ladders, don't walk barefoot, avoid going up/down stairs, avoid prolonged walking/standing, don't rest the arch or heel on cross bars and avoid smoking.
9) If overweight, try to lose weight.
10) If not improving, see your podiatrist who may be able to offer you other treatments, such as "cortisone" injections, anti-inflammatory medications, extracorporial shock wave therapy, physical therapy, surgery and more.
You don't have to suffer with heel pain. You can get rid of your heel pain if you follow each of the top 5 suggestions listed above. If you do each of the top 5 suggestions on a daily basis, you have over a 90% chance of eliminating your pain due to plantar fasciitis (heel spurs).
Successfully relieving plantar fasciitis heel pain requires using a variety of synergistic treatment modalities. The goal is to stop the activities which are irritating the plantar fascia, position the foot into the correct anatomical alignment, reduce strain on the plantar fascia while standing/walking, calm down the inflammation and stretch out the plantar fascia, so that it can heal properly in an elongated position. The longer you let heel pain go untreated, the harder it becomes to eliminate the pain. For most people, using a combination of arch supports/orthotics, a night splint while sleeping or sitting down, stretching twice daily and modifying their activities is sufficient to make their plantar fasciitis heel pain progressively resolve. Fortunately, surgery is rarely needed. Keep a positive attitude and remember that, yes, you can usually eliminate your heel pain by using these treatment suggestions.
Disclaimer: The information on DrNelsonClinic.com should not be considered
medical advice and is for general informational purposes only and should not be
used in place of a consultation or advice from your podiatrist or other
physician. The information on this website is not complete or all
inclusive of all diseases, ailments, medical treatments or surgical treatments. You should
see a podiatrist or other physician immediately for diagnosis and treatment of medical
problems or concerns. Do not disregard medical advice or delay seeking
medical care because of information you read on this website. Dr. Mark
Nelson, DPM and DrNelsonClinic.com does not recommend self-diagnosis or self-treatment of foot, ankle
or any other health problems. Dr. Mark Nelson, DPM and DrNelsonClinic.com does not make or imply any guarantees or warranties regarding
the accuracy or completeness of the information on this website or other websites.
All questions or disputes with products purchased from merchant affiliates of
DrNelsonClinic.com should be directed to that merchant. DrNelsonClinic.com
and Dr. Mark Nelson, DPM do not endorse or substantiate any claims made by
product manufacturers or other websites. DrNelsonClinic.com
and Dr. Mark Nelson, DPM make no guarantees and accept no liability for any
damages resulting from information on this website or product purchases made
through this website. If you do not agree to the terms of this disclaimer
you should disregard any information on this website and not purchase any
products through this website.
Send email to
the webmaster with
questions or comments about this web site.