Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of pain in the heel. It is associated (in about half of cases) with, but not caused by a heel spur. We know neither the cause nor best treatment despite a lot of research.
Pain is often felt first thing in the morning, getting out of bed in the sole of the heel, usually on the inner side. It also comes on with sport and with pressure. It is usually annoying rather than desperate, but can certainly remove the pleasure from sport and sometimes make it impossible. The natural history is fairly prolonged - ofetn out towards a year. Often stretching (including night splintage) is helpful, but as with many sports injuries there are a very wide variety of other treatments (see pills & injections). A custom orthosis correcting any biomechanical abnormality and unloading the tender area (sometimes just a sorbothane heel pad) usually helps.
There is now very strong evidence for replacing the traditional cortisone injection with extracorporeal shock wave therapy which is much less painful while being safer and more effective. We now have access to the latest radial machine in Wrexham.
Surgery is very much a last resort, even minimally invasively, although we have published good results through a transverse surgical incision.