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Outcome of nonsurgical treatment for plantar fasciitis.

Four hundred eleven patients with a clinical diagnosis of plantar fasciitis were assessed for predisposing factors. Each patient completed an outcomes assessment survey instrument that ranked effectiveness of various nonsurgical treatment modalities. Listed in descending order of effectiveness, the treatment modalities assessed were short leg walking cast, steroid injection, rest, ice, runner's shoe, crepe-soled shoe, aspirin or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, heel cushion, low-profile plastic heel cup, heat, and Tuli's heel cup. Treatment with a cast ranked the best. The Tuli's heel cup ranked the poorest. Most of the treatments were found to be unpredictable or minimally effective. The ineffectiveness of nonsurgical treatments noted in this outcomes study is at variance with most published clinical studies in which generally favorable results are reported after nonsurgical treatment for plantar fasciitis.

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