Why Does My Heel Hurt?


Your heels do an amazing job of absorbing much of the stress and pressure of walking and athletic activities. Your heel bone is the largest bone in your foot and provides much of the structure and helps to shape and support the arch. A muscle extends on each side of your heel to provide movement for your biggest and littlest toes, while your Achilles tendon connects your calf muscle to your heel bone. There are many situations where problems can arise with your heels and many possible sources of heel pain.

Some sources of heel pain include the following:

  • Achilles tendonitis—The largest tendon in your body connects your heel bone with your calf muscle, and the location where it attaches to your heel bone can often be the sight of pain and discomfort caused by stress, injury or overuse.
  • Plantar fasciitisPerhaps the most common cause of heel pain, this condition affects the fibrous tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot between your heel bone and metatarsal bones in the toes. When this tissue becomes irritated and inflamed, the pain frequently shows up in the heel and can be especially noticeable when first getting out of bed in the morning.
  • Haglund’s deformity—Also called “pump bump,” this painful growth appears on the back of the heel and forms partially in response to the excessive pressure and rubbing caused by tight fitting shoes.

Treatment for heel pain can include custom fitted orthotic inserts to decrease pressure on the heel, and the use of shockwave therapy to help improve blood circulation and promote healing and pain relief.

If you are experiencing heel pain, see your foot care professional for the proper diagnosis and treatment. At E.J. Nemet Podiatry in Twinsburg,  E.J. Nemet, DPM, treats a variety of foot and ankle conditions, including sports injuries, pediatric foot problems, diabetic foot complications, nerve disorders, and toenail and skin conditions. With advanced technologies and a dedicated staff, Dr. Nemet provides expert and compassionate care to patients in the Twinsburg and Beachwood areas. To contact us or to schedule an appointment, please call (234) 212-9940.