Bursitis develops in the bursa sacs. These small, fluid-filled sacs act like cushions in your joints. They provide a padded, slippery, smooth surface to prevent moving parts from rubbing against things moving in the opposite direction, or not at all. You can find these cushions in joints all over. In your feet, you can have a bursa in several places, including between your Achilles tendon and your heel bone.
Unfortunately, although these little sacs are designed to relieve pressure and friction around joints, sometimes they can suffer injuries as well. Bursitis is a painful problem that develops when a bursa becomes inflamed. Typically bursitis in the foot is the result of too much repetitive motion in the affected area. A tight Achilles that pinches and rubs the bursa against the heel bone can contribute to the problem in the back of the foot. While overuse is the most common culprit overall, trauma from a sudden injury can be an underlying cause as well.
Our team at Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC, will carefully evaluate your lower limbs to determine the exact cause of your discomfort and identify how serious it is. Like most overuse injuries, bursitis tends to get worse unless it is treated. Once we’ve diagnosed inflammation in a bursa, we’ll work with you to determine the best plan to treat the problem and restore your lower limbs.
The most important steps to healing bursitis involve alleviating the inflammation. Typically this involves treatments like the RICE method: rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Stop all painful activities for a time and rest your foot. Ice the uncomfortable area to decrease inflammation. Keep your foot elevated and consider wearing a compression bandage to discourage swelling.
Once the painful irritation in the bursa has been alleviated, you’ll need to take steps to reduce the overuse and prevent the problem from reoccurring. This may include making shoe changes or using orthotics to reduce strain and overuse in your lower limbs. You might need physical therapy, too, to stretch out tight tissues and help your feet avoid overwork issues.
The key to dealing with bursitis is to acknowledge that the pain isn’t normal and then get appropriate foot care. Our experts at Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC, will help you take care of your lower limbs and every part of your foot joints. Don’t wait until you’re limping or holding back from your activities to take care of your feet. Call us today for an appointment or use our online form to contact us.