Pain in the feet! Heel in agony.Plantar Fasciit... - Thyroid UK

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Pain in the feet! Heel in agony.Plantar Fasciitis or Tarsal Tunnel?

ffranny profile image
ffranny

Plantar Fasciitis/ tarsal tunnel ?

Hello

I once more have what was last called plantar fasciitis. This time in my left heel rather than my right heel last time a few years ago. It is agonising especially when getting up in the morning or after sitting. Eventually I get going but walking the dog has me in tears with pain, i have had this for a few months now and havent seen anyone what with covid. Does anyone have any helpful advice? I am sure it is thyroid. Related. I have hashis and am on a part T3 part Levothyroxine medication, supplying the former myself. In fact I had run out of T3 and was on Levo only for a few months... wondering if I should try NDT instead and if so any messages about purchasing such appreciated.

Thanks

62 Replies

Hi ffranny

I had plantar Fasciitis for years when I was on Levothyroxine, 2 things helped me taking vitamin D and calcium, my vitamin D level was extremely low then and eventually what stopped it happening again was taking Thyroid S (NDT) If you have not done it yet have a blood test to check your vitamin D and calcium level. If this does not help I would definitely consider taking NDT.

🙂

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator

Plantar fasciitis was one of the earliest reasons I asked for a thyroid function test. OK - just TSH!

When, eventually, I started levothyroxine, it did resolve.

Not that long ago, I was under-dosed for a while, and it came back. Resolving when I upped my dose.

I have had carpal tunnel and operation to cure it - certainly seems to have been caused by taking levo instead of NDT.Currently have a number of foot problems but cannot figure out what the specific cause is or perhaps there are several causes. Tried the GP but nothing useful from there.

Could be gout causing numbness in big toes. Could be tarsal tunnel as symptoms somewhat similar to carpal tunnel. Could be plantar fasciitis as area of concern matches description. Could merely be that I'm overweight. Also get pains in knees - housemaid's knee and pains in lower legs - goodness only knows what that is.

Taking NDT for last 7 years and currently Vitamins C and D on and off and every day is different, symptoms seem to take it in turns to annoy me. The only thing that helps is to simply take it easy and plenty of rest. It's not nice getting old.

I found that wearing arch supports in my shoes really helped. Have you tried that?

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to lisabax

Just to put the "we're all different" message out there! :-)

I cannot wear footwear with any arch support at all.

lisabax profile image
lisabax in reply to helvella

Point taken, but it worked for me and I’m glad I tried it. I think I got the suggestion from a podiatry website. Can’t remember now!

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to lisabax

I think arch supports are immensely valuable for some - but the message I received was that I must have arch support of some sort. And it ended up being an extraordinarily painful experience.

There are a lot of different arch supports out there, if one makes you worse it's worth trying another. I use soft ones in my indoor shoes which don't solve the problem completely, but do make being on my feet a bit more bearable. I also find rigid ones very painful. (by the way, I'm a retired Podiatrist)

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to Countrykitten

A specialist podiatrist made some hard insoles expressly for me - they caused extreme pain. :-(

Shoes with any arch support, unless it is so thin and insignificant it doesn't actually touch my arches, is at least uncomfortable. :-(

Despite it being expressly advised against by many, I find barefoot most comfortable a lot of the time! Though I do find a bit of a heel helps. :-)

(I do have very unusual feet. Extremely wide, extremely high arch and instep.)

Scrumbler profile image
Scrumbler in reply to helvella

🥲🥲🥲

Funny feet
tattybogle profile image
tattybogle in reply to Scrumbler

I'm still trying to get the image of 'Helvella-in-Heels' out of my head, :)

Scrumbler profile image
Scrumbler in reply to tattybogle

Yes I was too. Was going to post a picture but thought - a step too far 🧐

tattybogle profile image
tattybogle in reply to Scrumbler

I looked , but couldn't find anything 'suitable'

Scrumbler profile image
Scrumbler in reply to tattybogle

You haven’t got the right browsing technique 🙃🙃

tattybogle profile image
tattybogle in reply to Scrumbler

Wrong species i know .... but :)

Sorry Helvella x Tried to resist the temptation , but failed.
Scrumbler profile image
Scrumbler in reply to tattybogle

I tried too but failed abysmally. It’s Tatty’s fault. She eggs me on. 😎

The heeling process for PF
tattybogle profile image
tattybogle in reply to Scrumbler

Miss. Miss......Scrumbler started it . she's a bad influence. We'd best behave now or they won't let us sit together anymore.

I didn't realise you have a high rather than low arch. You don't need hard arch supports but I assume you have remedial exercises to do?

I forgot to add that I agree with you about bare feet..That's what nature intended!!

I agree about bare feet too, I prefer them for everything (unless it's cold or the floor has nails in)

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to Countrykitten

I completely gave up when the people who might have been expected to help caused worsening of everything. So the answer is no, I don’t.

They suggested standing on stairs and effectively stretching the arches and/or standing on a wedge while doing the washing up. Both made me worse day by day.

Scrumbler profile image
Scrumbler in reply to helvella

Washing up is known to make any ailment worse 🙃

Gingernut44 profile image
Gingernut44 in reply to lisabax

I don’t think arch supports are the ideal, it’s raising the heels that help alleviate the pain. They don’t cure the plantar fasciitis unfortunately. I had PF when my idiot GP decided to stop my levo so for me it was definitely under medication. Sorry to tell you, it took months to resolve ☹️

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to Gingernut44

Wearing a raised heel to alleviate PF is a bad idea especially if your doing it for extended period of time like couple of weeks or more because it will cause the achilles tendon to shorten which will create achilles tendonitis... which is a beast to get rid of . Speaking from 4 years of experience with Achilles Tendonitis only to discover I have psoriatic arthritis that attacks my tendons..... such a joy!

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to Batty1

Though I have never been able to comfortably wear truly flat footwear. With PF, although barefoot is good, a certain degree of heel is essential as soon as I put on any shoes. Just a few millimetres can be enough.

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to helvella

Definitely no flats if you have PF but for achilles tendonitis wearing shoes with and elevated heel really does cause a shortening of the AT if you wear them all the time and I can 100% attest to this with my 4 year battle with psa.

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to Batty1

oh no! how about a 1 inch heel sometimes..? It is so painful after walking the dog ..

Gingernut44 profile image
Gingernut44 in reply to ffranny

If they relieve the pain, yes. I bought soft gel heel inserts and put them in whatever shoes I was wearing on the day. Definitely better than wearing flats. Good luck, hopefully it won’t last too long especially if you get your dose right 😊

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to ffranny

If you have PF with no Achilles involvement you need a shoe that offers support and someone suggested vionics.

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to Gingernut44

yes i wonder if i should increase T 3 a bit... and i dug out a pair boots with a bit of a heel and they help alleviate the pain when walking..pains in the feet are the worst!!

1kasug2 profile image
1kasug2 in reply to lisabax

I was regularly visiting a chiropodist when my plantar fasciitis started. He recommended a heel support which worked great. It was a couple of years later when I was diagnosed hypo, I’ve never connected the two.

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to lisabax

have just ordered some heel insoles meant for plantar fasciitis... heel supports will be next on list if these dont help thanks

I’ve had bouts of pf before and went to see physiotherapist. The daily exercises I was given really helped to strengthen around the area and I’ve not had it since. Depending on your own mobility levels I’m sure there would be some physio movements out there to help you. Best of luck!

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to jellybeansfortea

The exercises I was given made it massively worse. I really, really tried and ended up abandoning them.

Soft, diabetic insoles helped. Moderate heels helped. Levothyroxine cured!

StPetes profile image
StPetes in reply to helvella

That's really interesting Helvella. I didn't know about diabetic insoles. The slight heel raise makes sense to me as I prefer wedge heels and can't wear flats. I've been meaning to see a physio for the last couple of years with left ankle problems and will be interested to find out if s/he links thyroid issues with foot pain.

helvella profile image
helvellaAdministrator in reply to StPetes

The significant bit is that they are beautifully soft and really soften the effects of walking - at least, they did for me.

Some other insoles have various firmer bits, etc.

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to helvella

thanks I will try these and slight increase in T 3

I went to a podiatry clinic because at the time I had no idea it was thyroid related. They devised some arch support for me because even i could see how flat my feet had become - they were a size larger than previously. The supports helped and it eventually resolved but cant say how or why! As Helvella says it may not help, but then again an assessment wouldn't hurt.

Hi there I suffer occasionally with this condition. The best thing I found was a company that sells a liquid foot orthotics called Solemates. You have to quite literally use these for six weeks ..no walking in anything but these. So I was transferring them from shoes to slippers etc. The reason is that every time we walk with fasciitis we are breaking and tearing any healing the body is trying to make..it worked amazing and to be honest haven’t had a reoccurrence since.

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to CattiaSel

Liquid foot orthotics? Can you explain exactly what these are do you make them at home?

CattiaSel profile image
CattiaSel in reply to Batty1

Hiya just look up solemates liquid orthotics on Amazon 😄

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to CattiaSel

Lol.... It certainly didn’t sound like something that could be bought!

bestbuddy profile image
bestbuddy in reply to CattiaSel

Please could you post the link for the liquid orthotic on Amazon? I have looked and not finding it. Many thanks in advance.

CattiaSel profile image
CattiaSel in reply to bestbuddy

Here you go..😀

bestbuddy profile image
bestbuddy in reply to CattiaSel

Thank you so much for your reply.

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to CattiaSel

thanks i will look them up

really feel for you, i suffered for years with this! Had to give up my job, until i had ultrasound guided injection into my foot, instant relief! Ive had 3 now over time and the last one has lasted over 2 yrs and still no pain! Wonderful .

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to giggy63

Injections? Like steroids? Dangerous steroid injections can and will break down tendons and this is not a road anyone would want to travel down.... my brother does this too.

giggy63 profile image
giggy63 in reply to Batty1

when you can hardly walk at all i was willing to try anything being in constant pain even when sitting, that was 6yrs ago since my 1st injection. Still pain free and no problems with my foot apart from abit flat footed which i was warned about beforehand, but hopefully might not need another injection !. My quality of life has completely changed for the better. No regrets here.

Batty1 profile image
Batty1 in reply to giggy63

Trust me Im sadly well aware what constant pain can make a person do to get some relief.

forgot to say i found vionic footware very good, bit pricey but worth every penny.

I used to have horrible PF—I’d get out of bed in the morning and be barely able to walk. Hurt sooo much!

But (feel the need to “touch wood” :D ) since being on a decent dosage of thyroid hormones it’s gone away. No physio required, no arch supports (although I used them at the time with mixed results)—fixed and gone. It took a while—a few months I’d say—but in some ways it was confirmation of how much I’d needed my “sub-clinical” hypothyroidism sorting out.

Keep us posted if you find an answer. I have had it for like 5-6 years .....I just mange it at this point. When I first got hit with it...... I could hardly walk its a mess. I am on a facebook group of people that have it. But it seems ......you just have to keep trying different things and see what helps. I feel for you! All the best!

ffranny profile image
ffranny in reply to 5858

thanks i had it befire years ago in my other foot and it took about 2 years to go tho I hadnt connected it with thyroid then.. this time it seems more painful tho.

5858 profile image
5858 in reply to ffranny

I get it............. it started on one foot for me......... seemed to ease....... then I got it really bad in the other foot....so afraid of going back....... to the horrible pain...Like I said .......I am just managing............. Seems my troubles started ..........when I found out........ I have the thyroid problems.

I had plantar fasciitis for some years, was advised by a nursing friend to put a tin (bean tin or similar size) on the floor and roll my foot on it so it was rolling along the floor under my arch, adjusting pressure to suit. This helped enormously and is easily repeated as necessary

Fenioux profile image
Fenioux in reply to AnneDyde

When I get the initial twinges I use a coke tin and roll my foot along it for 15 mins or more, several times a day and it seems to stem it. I didnt realise it was a thyroid problem

I found FS6 Socks helped relieve the morning pain as they hold the foot in the correct position so the muscle doesn't tear when putting your foot on the floor, I've had 2 episodes one lasted 18 months and the second lasted just over 12 months, I found a small heel during the day also helped, I also found stretching helped (stand with toes on the edge of a step or stair raising up & down, such relief) I also used the rolling technique on a tin of beans which also relieved the pain. Just keep trying different things until you find what works best for you, I hope your PF heals and you are pain free soon 😊

I had excruciating pain in both soles of feet. My doctor tried acupuncture and pain gone after 2nd session. That was at least 12 years ago. Worth a try?!

As side from all the other suggestions above which applied to me too the game changer for me was b12 injections for heel pain.Hadn't associated the two but it disappeared in an hour.

Prior to that I couldn't walk for more than 20mins without excessive heel pain.

After the injection I was able to walk around IKEA for two hours ! (Don't judge)

Also check if you have other b12 symptoms like dizziness vertigo, ants crawling sensation etc

I suffered from this when I first noticed I had a goitre & my thyroid gland was not working properly. I had physio & was told to do exercises, but it was wearing Boots green gel pads which really helped. I was told to push out the middle piece in them, so that there was a hole in the center of the pads & then there would be no pressure on the heel when walking.

Hi I have an underactive thyroid and have taken thyroxine for many years. I suffered from severe plantar fasciitis and was eventually given a moon boot to wear for 6 weeks. I was also told my calf muscles were very tight which can give plantar fasciitis. I wear very supportive trainers or trainer boots and, now that I can, do proper stretches several times a day, all definitely helps. Especially after a long walk or any forms of exercise.

Interesting point raised re levels of thyroxine taken does affect all parts of my body ! I now, do not , take mixed manufacturer thyroxine and always ask chemist to give the same make for all doses. Hope you find some kind of solution. This forum is amazing.

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