Plantar fasciitis is a common condition involving foot pain and tightness, and many plantar fasciitis sufferers seek massage therapy for relief. New research shows using a medial arch support helps manage pain and pain-related disability associated with plantar fasciitis. The medial arch is on the inside of the mid-foot.
The study compared effects of the arch support with supporting the heel and foot using a taping method commonly called “Low-Dye” taping.
Thirty patients with unilateral (one-sided) plantar fasciitis were randomly assigned to the arch-support or tape groups, according to an abstract published on www.pubmed.gov. Both groups were assessed before and after the study for pain and foot function. The study group was made up of 23 men and seven women.
Both groups received nine sessions over three weeks consisting of ultrasound and calf-muscles stretching, the abstract noted. They were instructed to maintain supportive
intervention (arch support or tape) throughout this period.
The pre-post comparison showed reduced pain and improved function in both groups; however, there was “significant” improvement seen in the arch-support group.
“Results indicate that a medial arch support is more convenient for short-term management of pain and disability in patients with plantar fasciitis than taping,” the researchers noted.
Source: “Low-Dye Taping Versus Medial Arch Support in Managing Pain and Pain-Related Disability in Patients With Plantar Fasciitis” was published in Foot & Ankle Specialist. (2010 Dec 1.)