There’s Nothing Shocking About Using Waves to Treat Heel Pain

Robert G. Parker
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Dr. Parker is a podiatrist and surgeon in Houston, TX who has been helping patients for more than 40 years.

Heel pain plagues multitudes of people on a daily basis. If you suffer from a sharp, stabbing pain in your heels first thing in the morning or after a long period of sitting, odds are good you have plantar fasciitis. This condition can clear up in many people with changes in footwear, orthotics, and stretching exercises. In some cases, however, additional treatment may be needed. That’s when we might consider using waves to treat heel pain as well.

We’re not talking about ocean waves here (although who wouldn’t want a beach vacation as part of a treatment plan?).  We’re referring to extracorporeal pulse activation treatment, or EPAT for short. You might have also heard it referred to as “shockwave therapy.”

This form of treatment delivers ultrasound waves into the foot to the source of your heel pain. The waves create miniscule damage to the tissue, which the body will react to by increasing the flow of blood to the area. This also increases the flow of nutrients and oxygen to needy cells, which can help accelerate healing and relieve pain.

An extracorporeal pulse activation treatment session lasts about 15 minutes, is non-invasive, and allows you to continue your day as normal as soon as it ends. Within 1-2 months of starting treatment, about 80% of patients can feel a difference in their heel pain.

EPAT is not for everyone, and many times other treatments can help certain patients with plantar fasciitis much better. The key is to take action against your pain in the first place! Call Dr. Robert Parker and the staff of Parker Foot & Ankle at (281) 497-2850. Our Houston office is ready to help you get to the source of your heel pain and provide the treatment that’s right for you!

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