The plantar fascia is a tough strand of connective tissue running from your heel to your forefoot. If it becomes tight and constrained, you can end up with a condition called plantar fasciitis. Stepping out of bed in the morning will hurt. Walking becomes painful, and running can be next to impossible in severe cases. Many cases of plantar fascia heal, in time, with proper rest, footwear, and physical therapy. But sometimes, surgery becomes necessary. What are some signs you should start considering surgery for your plantar fasciitis? Take a look.
Your symptoms have not resolved with rest.
First, be honest with yourself. Have you really taken as much time to rest as you should have? If you have been resting for only a few days, but then running or standing on your feet all day, then your plantar fascia may not be healing fully by the time you get back to things. Try taking a longer rest period, if possible. If after a few weeks of limited activity you're still struggling with serious pain, then this is a sign you should meet with a surgeon.
Physical therapy is not working.
Physical therapy can help strengthen your calves and forefoot muscles, which can take the strain off the plantar fascia and allow it to heal. PT can also help stretch and loosen your plantar fascia. But sometimes, PT is not enough. Your plantar fasciitis may be caused or perpetuated by your anatomy in a way that PT can't quite make up for. Or, it may be so serious that months of PT simply cannot bring about enough healing to make a difference. Connective tissues are really slow to heal, after all. If you feel like you've given PT a fair shake, but to no avail, that's a sign you should call a surgeon.
You need to get back to work.
Perhaps you've tried a few things to heal your plantar fascia, but you're simply out of time. You need a quick fix because you have to get back to work and move on with your life. Surgery for plantar fasciitis does come with a few weeks of healing time. But it can feel better to spend that time knowing you'll be better in the end, rather than toiling on with less-promising treatments.
If your plantar fasciitis is stubborn, surgery might be the answer. Have a podiatrist take a look and give you their take.