Heel Spurs and Plantar Fasciitis: Different but Related

One common misconception we see at Edmond/Norman Foot and Ankle Clinic is patients thinking that Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Spurs are the same thing. These are two separate conditions, although they are often seen in conjunction with one another. They both have one major component in common: they cause extreme and ongoing pain in the heel.

Plantar Fasciitis

This common condition is an inflammation of the plantar fascia, the fibrous tissue running along the arch of the foot that connects the heel bone to the ball of the forefoot. The plantar fascia endures much impact and pressure in supporting the foot’s arch. Standing, walking, and running can cause it to become inflamed and irritated. In extreme cases, the plantar fascia can even begin to deteriorate. Choosing properly fitted footwear, using strategically placed heel pads or cushions in your shoes and stretching the foot regularly to help keep the foot flexible are all steps you can take to help prevent Plantar Fasciitis.

Heel Spurs

Heel spurs are outgrowths of bone that occur in the heel. They are often the result of calcium deposits that form over time and then become irritated by activities that involve pressure and high impact to the heel, such as running and jumping. Continuous activity that impacts the heel and footwear pressing against the affected area causes inflammation, swelling, redness, and pain. Being overweight and having overly high arches also predisposes someone to develop heel spurs.


Treatment plans are similar for both Plantar Fasciitis and Heel Spurs. Our board certified foot and ankle surgeon, Dr. A Bil Buksh, is one of Oklahoma City area’s most experienced podiatrists. He will conduct a thorough examination of your heel and foot and determine the best treatment plan for you. It may include:

  • Properly fitted, supportive footwear
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Icing the heel
  • Orthotics
  • Specifically designed exercises/splinting the foot
  • Surgery

Conditions that cause pain in your heels can be extremely debilitating. Remember, no heel pain is “normal.” If you are suffering from heel pain, make an appointment at our Edmond office by calling (405) 285-7408 or our Norman office at (405) 321-6984.