Plantar fascia injection:

  • Purpose-  To relieve pain and inflammation of the connective tissue in the sole of the foot.
  • Overview- Injections deliver an anesthetic and anti-inflammatory solution directly to the affected tissue. While decreased inflammation is nearly immediate, it is possible that symptoms return after three or more months.
  • Before the procedure- The anti-inflammatory solution may increase blood sugars. Consult your primary care doctor or endocrinologist before this procedure if you have a history of elevated blood sugars.
  • Details- The procedure begins with the sterilization of the skin around the injection site. Once the accurate location of the injection is determined, the anesthetic and anti-inflammatory solutions are injected.  Image guidance may be used.
  • After the procedureThere may be numbness or pain at the injection site that can last 2-3 hours. Redness and a feeling of warmth may be experienced. Apply ice as needed to relieve any pain from the injection and protect the injection area for a couple of days by avoiding strenuous activity. It is important to be aware of heightened pain, redness and swelling that lasts more than two days.
  • Potential complications- Osteoncrosis (death of nearby bone), infection, nerve damage, thinning of skin and tissue surrounding the injection site, pain and inflammation of the joint, tendon weakening or rupture, osteoporosis (nearby bone thinning), and skin discoloration around the injection site. Due to potential complications, physicians will limit the number of injections given to a patient based on the joint and the reason for treatment. This injection in particular may yield fat pad atrophy.  This is thinning of the important fat in the bottom of the foot that gives cushion.  Reduction of the fat pad may cause more pain with weight bearing long term.