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Plantar fasciitis
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Plantar fasciitis

Contributors: Robert Lachky MD, Eric Ingerowski MD, FAAP
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Plantar fasciitis, also known as plantar fasciopathy, is inflammation of the plantar fascia, the fibrous band on the bottom of the foot. It is the most common cause of plantar heel pain, with pain usually occurring at the medial aspect of heel on the plantar surface of the foot. It may be unilateral or bilateral. In addition to foot / heel pain, it is characterized by thickened plantar fascia.

The condition affects both men and women and typically occurs in patients aged 40-60 years, although runners are often affected earlier in life.

The condition is common in runners and may also affect ballet dancers and other athletes. Risk factors include having a high-arched foot, a sudden increase in running distance, using training shoes that lack proper support, and having tight hamstrings / Achilles tendons, causing a lack of dorsiflexion. In fact, a reduction in ankle dorsiflexion is what correlates most with plantar fasciitis.


M72.2 – Plantar fascial fibromatosis

202882003 – Plantar fasciitis

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Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

  • Calcaneus fracture
  • Infection (see foot Skin bacterial abscess)
  • Foot puncture wound
  • Charcot neuroarthropathy of the foot and ankle
  • Plantar fascia tear / rupture
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Baxter's nerve entrapment
  • Calcaneal cyst
  • Gout
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus, Rheumatoid arthritis, or Psoriatic arthritis
  • Fat pad atrophy
  • Retrocalcaneal Bursitis
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Painful heel pad syndrome
  • Posterior tibial Tendonitis
  • Flexor digitorum longus Tendonitis
  • Neoplasm

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Last Reviewed:06/04/2018
Last Updated:11/07/2023
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Plantar fasciitis
Copyright © 2024 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.