A recent study in the Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery touts endoscopic debridement as an innovative treatment for chronic heel pain.

The authors say endoscopic debridement is minimally invasive and maintains the integrity of the plantar fascia. The study focused on 46 consecutive patients who had endoscopic debridement after failing conservative treatment for plantar fasciitis with a mean follow-up of 20 months. Mean Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) pain scores decreased from 8.95 to 1.34 and mean American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) scores increased from 51.29 to 89.91, according to the study.

Lead study author James Cottom, DPM, FACFAS, cites advantages with this technique including that one can fully visualize the origin of the plantar fascia and debride it along with resection of a heel spur if needed. He notes documented comorbidities associated with release of the plantar fascia including lateral column overload and metatarsalgia.

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Author(s): Brian McCurdy

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