Pain in back of foot, what is this.

MasterTS

Professional
The pain is right here. Looks like its labeled as subcutaneous calcaneal bursa area.

Only in my right foot.. not my left foot.







It hurts when I press on the subcutaneous calcaneal bursa area... it also hurts when i walk (pressing my heels up after the toes land)... It doesnt hurt when i stay on my toes and it doesnt hurt when i walk with the heel landing and not using the toes.
 
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tomato123

Professional
Probably impossible to really know what's going on without taking an X-ray and seeing a foot doctor. I am not a medical doctor so this is just anecdotal - I have the double whammy of heel spur and achilles tendonitis on my right foot and that area is where I have most of my pain. Same deal in terms of what triggers the pain, I don't feel it when I land or jump on my back foot, but it hurts when I press against it, and hurts like #&*! if I accidentally bump it against my chair leg.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
As mentioned by others, heel spurs appears to be likely. Heel spurs (HS), themselves, are usually painless. However they irritate the tissue around them and, in this way, cause pain. It is possible that it is a irritating the bursa. But that's just a guess on my part.

Note that a heel spur is a calcium deposit that results in a bony protrusion. They are often associated with plantar fasciitis (PF). But PF is not always present. HS is often due to trauma -- excess body weight, running or jogging on hard surfaces, abnormalities in the walking gait, or repeated hard landing on the heel. Worn or poorly fitting shoes (esp those which lack the proper arch support).

PF can be associated with age, diabetes, frequent short bursts of physical activity or having either flat feet or high arches. But, as mentioned before, your HS may or may not be accompanied by PF.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Ice or cold compresses can alleviate pain and reduce inflammation. Sometimes heat might also alleviate pain but probably will not reducing inflammation (and might even aggravated). If you choose to use heat at all, make sure that you are using ice / cold more than heat.

Acetaminophen can help with pain but has no or very little effect on inflammation. NSAIDs can help with both pain and inflammation. Certain stretches might help (especially if accompanied by PF).

Heel inserts sometimes help. Slightly elevating the heel might be all that you require to minimize pain. A custom orthotic might be even better, if needed. A moderately-priced semi-custom insole could, possibly, be a suitable alternative to an expensive custom orthotic.

Dr Scholl's CustomFit orthotic inserts are semi-custom insoles that have worked quite well for my feet. I usually get them for $40 to $50 USD per pair. Look for the Dr Scholl's foot-mapping kiosk at various stores (Rite Aid, CVS, etc if you are in the US).

Note that YMMV with these CF insoles since they are selected based on foot size, degree of foot arch, and static foot pressure. If you have an abnormal walking or running gait, static foot pressure might not yield a complete enough picture. Certainly worth a try tho.

Note that inadequate intake of calcium (and other bone building minerals) might put you at risk for developing bone spurs. Diets high in salt and phosphorus, while low in calcium, can results in HS. OTOH, a high intake of calcium with inadequate vitamin D can be a recipe for osteoporosis and HS.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
@MasterTS

Please keep in mind that responses that you received in this forum are merely (educated) guesses. For a more definitive diagnosis, you really should consult with a medical foot specialist. They MIGHT be able to diagnose the problem without an X-ray (or MRI).

If at all possible, avoid surgery or cortisone shots unless absolutely necessary. My HS (no PF) went away in less than 9 months w/o surgery or shots.
 

MasterTS

Professional
Thanks guys! Yes I think it is heel spur based now that I'm reading more about it. Sometimes I accidentally bump it on my chair leg and it hurts like hell!@! (just like tomato123 mentioned).

Okay going to rest that foot for a bit.
 

mikeler

Moderator
As always, consulting a medical expert is best. That being said:

Years ago, I had someone with heel pain see a foot specialist. The guy told him it was likely plantar fasciitis which I always thought was pain at the bottom of the foot. My heel has been bothering me on and off for a few weeks lately, so I finally put these bad boys on today and it is already way better. It's a cheap solution to try out. Good luck:

 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Thanks guys! Yes I think it is heel spur based now that I'm reading more about it. Sometimes I accidentally bump it on my chair leg and it hurts like hell!@! (just like tomato123 mentioned).

Okay going to rest that foot for a bit.
Even tho' you identified your issue as heel spurs pain, you could still very well have PF = plantar fasciitis. Note that PF will often cause HS pain. Refer to following image:
As always, consulting a medical expert is best. That being said:

Years ago, I had someone with heel pain see a foot specialist. The guy told him it was likely plantar fasciitis which I always thought was pain at the bottom of the foot. My heel has been bothering me on and off for a few weeks lately, so I finally put these bad boys on today and it is already way better. It's a cheap solution to try out. Good luck:

PF will often result in HS. I believe that it might also be possible to have HS w/o PF (and vice versa). It's great that you found something that help to manage your condition. Perhaps the OP should try this.

My sister had a bad case of PF but did not have the same pain at the back of the heel that I felt. She wore a PF night splint when she went to bed for a couple of months or so.



 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Definitely wouldn't rule out PF
Dealing with it now ... out of no where nice little pop at the bottom of the back of the heel .... x-rays show very minor heel spur that podiatrist does not think is related.
Good stretching and heel lift makes a huge difference. Also paying a lot of attention to relieving tightness in the calf.
 

Papa Mango

Semi-Pro
Definitely wouldn't rule out PF
Dealing with it now ... out of no where nice little pop at the bottom of the back of the heel .... x-rays show very minor heel spur that podiatrist does not think is related.
Good stretching and heel lift makes a huge difference. Also paying a lot of attention to relieving tightness in the calf.
Uh oh...
Had been having some issues in the same spot, back of the heel on the outside but was very manageable with tight bandaging.
Did not bandage today and playing some hard dubs, something popped. :(
Lacrosse ball being used as I type this.

Following
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Uh oh...
Had been having some issues in the same spot, back of the heel on the outside but was very manageable with tight bandaging.
Did not bandage today and playing some hard dubs, something popped. :(
Lacrosse ball being used as I type this.

Following
So sorry to hear.
I am 3 weeks out from the pop. The first week there was no way I was doing anything. Tests showed I tore a section of the PF. Doc said I basically did my own PF surgery without the incisions. I had no real issues prior ... until that day. My feet had both been sore and a bit crampy for the first time that day. I should have just gone home.

Focus more on your calf than on your arch. If you have a percussion massager, get it to work on that calf, all the way down to the Achilles. As much as you can handle. That will make a big difference.

The thing that makes it feel the best: Sit on floor/bed with leg straight out in front of you. Put a towel/pillowcase around your foot. Pull foot toward you keeping leg straight. Amazing relief.

I got back on the courts after 2+ weeks. I am definitely out on playing daily for a while. Every other day is max.

Add a heel lift if you haven't already.
 

Papa Mango

Semi-Pro
So sorry to hear.
I am 3 weeks out from the pop. The first week there was no way I was doing anything. Tests showed I tore a section of the PF. Doc said I basically did my own PF surgery without the incisions. I had no real issues prior ... until that day. My feet had both been sore and a bit crampy for the first time that day. I should have just gone home.

Focus more on your calf than on your arch. If you have a percussion massager, get it to work on that calf, all the way down to the Achilles. As much as you can handle. That will make a big difference.

The thing that makes it feel the best: Sit on floor/bed with leg straight out in front of you. Put a towel/pillowcase around your foot. Pull foot toward you keeping leg straight. Amazing relief.

I got back on the courts after 2+ weeks. I am definitely out on playing daily for a while. Every other day is max.

Add a heel lift if you haven't already.
Oh boy, mine is not as bad as yours. Right now more of minor discomfort while walking. Will be heading to the courts in the am and see how it goes.
But thanks for the tips/exercises especially the towel pull, which I had forgotten about!

I can't seem to find the right shoes with all these tennis shortages which is bad for everything feet and above, but that is another thread I guess.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Oh boy, mine is not as bad as yours. Right now more of minor discomfort while walking. Will be heading to the courts in the am and see how it goes.
But thanks for the tips/exercises especially the towel pull, which I had forgotten about!

I can't seem to find the right shoes with all these tennis shortages which is bad for everything feet and above, but that is another thread I guess.
Oh .... on shoes .... yeah, that has been an issue.
I regularly play with Asics GR8s lots of support and play with insoles and always have.
They are now unbearably uncomfortable.
Got a pair of the Asics Gel Speed FF ... much more comfortable and seem to take all the pressure off the area.

Another weird thing. I have always laced up shoes nice and tight. That is no good either. Now having to have them laced fairly loosely for my taste on the sore foot. Makes a big difference.

On the shoe shortage. Yup. not enjoying paying full price and getting colorways I don't like.
 
I have Haglunds Deformity which is a bony growth in same area.
These spandex like gel padded heel socks have made a huge improvement in reducing the pain.
Also warming up calf, foot and doing Achilles stretch.

ZenToes Achilles Tendon Heel sock
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Asked my sister about the night splint and her PF. Turns out that she found the night splint to uncomfortable and did not use it all that often. Said she was losing sleep because of it and decided it was not worth it.

She indicated that cortisone shots did not do her much good either. She was able to get past the PF with physical therapy (a lot), various exercises / stretches and some dietary changes.
 

Papa Mango

Semi-Pro
Oh .... on shoes .... yeah, that has been an issue.
I regularly play with Asics GR8s lots of support and play with insoles and always have.
They are now unbearably uncomfortable.
Got a pair of the Asics Gel Speed FF ... much more comfortable and seem to take all the pressure off the area.

Another weird thing. I have always laced up shoes nice and tight. That is no good either. Now having to have them laced fairly loosely for my taste on the sore foot. Makes a big difference.

On the shoe shortage. Yup. not enjoying paying full price and getting colorways I don't like.
Played a couple of times over the weekend with the heel bandaged up tight.
Warm up/hitting without tying the laces. Only for sets.
Some pain on impact. Feeling pretty ok as of now. Doing heel raises.

Asics never fit me as they are too narrow, but I have wide GR's coming in so we'll see.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Played a couple of times over the weekend with the heel bandaged up tight.
Warm up/hitting without tying the laces. Only for sets.
Some pain on impact. Feeling pretty ok as of now. Doing heel raises.

Asics never fit me as they are too narrow, but I have wide GR's coming in so we'll see.
Curious how are you bandaging/taping it? I am not a fan of extra pressure in the area, would think it would hurt more.

I played twice this weekend. League doubles and did well. Mixed sets for 2 hours next day and did remarkably well.
A little sore last night afterwards ... but feel pretty awesome today.

I may have turned a corner.

I will say that between my shoulder and this foot, and being closer to 100yo than to 1yo, I am finding all the maintenance work I need to do is taking entirely too much time.
Shoulder: about 20 minutes of exercises 3X every day ... after my full impingement back in October, I may scale this down to 2X a day soon
Foot: 10 minutes of exercises/stretching currently 4-5X a day
Legs: IT band stretching/massage 5-10 minutes 2X a day or the legs just don't work
 

Papa Mango

Semi-Pro
Curious how are you bandaging/taping it? I am not a fan of extra pressure in the area, would think it would hurt more.

I played twice this weekend. League doubles and did well. Mixed sets for 2 hours next day and did remarkably well.
A little sore last night afterwards ... but feel pretty awesome today.

I may have turned a corner.

I will say that between my shoulder and this foot, and being closer to 100yo than to 1yo, I am finding all the maintenance work I need to do is taking entirely too much time.
Shoulder: about 20 minutes of exercises 3X every day ... after my full impingement back in October, I may scale this down to 2X a day soon
Foot: 10 minutes of exercises/stretching currently 4-5X a day
Legs: IT band stretching/massage 5-10 minutes 2X a day or the legs just don't work
Bandaging it like the image below. Regular elastic ace bandage, light pressure around the arch but tighter on the ankle and the heel area.



Now that reminds me I should be doing my shoulder exercises too. :(
 

Crocodile

Legend
The pain is right here. Looks like its labeled as subcutaneous calcaneal bursa area.

Only in my right foot.. not my left foot.







It hurts when I press on the subcutaneous calcaneal bursa area... it also hurts when i walk (pressing my heels up after the toes land)... It doesnt hurt when i stay on my toes and it doesnt hurt when i walk with the heel landing and not using the toes.
I have had this bursitis which is common with tennis players and takes time to get rid of it.
 
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