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Research Article Open Access
Introduction: Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of plantar heel pain, accounting for almost 15% of all foot-related complaints. Arch supports and heel pads are the main foot orthotics to manage the heel pain. Despite the high prevalence of plantar fasciitis, information about the effectiveness of different orthoses is still scarce. This study was aimed to compare the effectiveness of using an arch support and a silicone heel pad in the pain management of people with plantar fasciitis.
Methods: Forty subjects (mean ± SD age; 44.46 ± 9.7 years) with unilateral plantar fasciitis were recruited in this randomized clinical trial study. They randomly and equally allocated to the intervention groups (the soft arch support insole and silicone heel pad). The primary outcomes were pain and foot function. Outcomes were measured while participants were administrated prior to receiving the allocated intervention and after 6-week follow up period. In the admission and follow-up sessions, the heel pain was scored via visual analogue scale (VAS) and the foot function were measured by foot and ankle outcome score (FAOS) questionnaire. Data were analysed by Mann-Whitney test.
Results: Foot orthoses significantly improved the foot function, reduce the heel pain (p<0.001). There was no significant difference between two orthoses in pain relief (p=0.094). The results indicated that both silicone heel pad and soft insole had successful outcomes in the management of plantar fasciitis over a 6-week period.
Conclusion: The silicone heel pad and the soft insole with arch support are effective to reduce heel pain and improve the activity level in people with plantar fasciitis.
Plantar fasciitis, Heel pain, Foot orthoses, Foot Orthoses, Pain Management, Plantar Fasciitis