Abstract:

The objective of this article is to describe  several cases (n = 3) in which patients with plantar fasciitis,  associated with heel spurs, were successfully treated via chiropractic  adjustments, emphasizing the correction of posterior calcaneal  subluxation.

This particular group of patients presented with heel pain  varying from 2 months to over 4 years in duration. Radiological  confirmation of heel spur was evident in each case. Previously  unsuccessful treatment regimens included oral anti-inflammatants,  steroid injections, orthotics, and sustaining physical therapy. Two of  the patients had been deemed candidates for surgical removal of the  spurs but had declined to pursue that option, electing instead to use  chiropractic care and conservative management in an effort to resolve  the condition.

All patients were treated with short-lever mechanical force,  manually assisted chiropractic adjusting procedures, with special  emphasis to the foot, ankle, and calcaneus. Although the specific nature  of the relevant subluxations varied with each patient, a common  denominator with this particular patient population group was the  occurrence of a posterior subluxation of the calcaneus. All adjustments  were delivered via the use of an Activator Adjusting Instrument and were  comfortably tolerated by each patient. Said treatment resulted in a  complete resolution of all symptoms in this studied group of patients,  with no recurrence being demonstrated over a protracted follow-up period  of time.

The conservative management of heel spur syndrome may be  effectively implemented through the use of specific chiropractic  adjusting procedures in selected patients presenting with this  particular problem Attention to the possibility of posterior subluxation  of the calcaneus should be emphasized during the chiropractic  examination process. Although other pedal subluxations can be involved  as well, the posterior calcaneus is often a common denominator in the  subluxation complex associated with this condition. The use of a  mechanical force, manually assisted short-lever adjusting technique,  such as with an Activator Adjusting Instrument, can provide effective  delivery of the chiropractic treatment. Further study, involving larger  patient populations, should be provided to more thoroughly investigate  this treatment on a wider scale.


Chiropr Sports Med 1995b; 9(2):44-51.

Author information: Polkinghorn BS. Private practice of chiropractic. Santa Monica, CA, USA.

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