The ProblemHeel pain can cause problems for many a keen runner. Jan, a 51 year old keen amateur runner, came to see me about persistent heel pain. Although she had not had a definite diagnosis, the location and nature of the pain appeared to match what one would expect with plantar fasciitis. Her heel had been ‘niggly’ for the previous year, but in the past 4 months it had steadily become worse. Jan only gave the pain 5 out of 10, so she wasn’t in agony, but it was hindering her running. She had started doing more swimming and cycling instead, but was frustrated because running was the form of exercise she most enjoyed.
The TreatmentFor her first treatment I felt up the mid-line of her calf and just under the back of the knee I found a small lump which was tender. I used Guasha (a scraping therapy which brings impurities to the surface) and a small purple patch appeared where the lump was. As soon as this patch appeared the area was less tender. I then put acupuncture needles under her heel and attached electrodes to them and gave her electro-acupuncture treatment.
By the third treatment Jan was happy that the pain was improving, with it being less intense and less frequent. By the 6th treatment she reported that her heel was great, ‘no problem at all’ and she had taken up running as her main sport again. She has had no problems since.