New Clinical Trials Test Effectiveness of Plantar Fasciitis Treatment

New Clinical Trials Test Effectiveness of Plantar Fasciitis Treatment

Two clinical trials investigate new and established options for the treatment of plantar fasciitis, with enrolments now being accepted through clinicaltrials.gov.

The clinical trials compare standard pre-fabricated insoles against custom orthotics for the treatment of plantar fasciitis and improvement in foot function, with one trial investigating the effectiveness of a single plantar fascia injection of platelet rich plasma as a treatment of plantar fasciitis.

The plantar fasciitis orthotic study is being conducted by Adam Fleischer of the Center for Lower Extremity Ambulatory Research (CLEAR) at The Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, North Chicago. The study is being conducted in collaboration with Advocate Health Care, and is a trial on the effectiveness of custom foot orthoses for the treatment of plantar fasciitis compared with standard pre-fabricated and sham insoles.

The study will run over 12 months, with test subjects provided with a custom made orthotic shoe insert taken from a mold of the subjects feet, a standard pre-fabricated insole or a sham insole. Monitoring will take place at 3 month intervals to determine the level of heel pain reduction and improvements in foot function.

Further details of the trial including inclusion/exclusion criteria is available from clinicaltrials.gov, reference: NCT00765843

A more interesting double blind randomized study is being conducted by Bjørn Nedergaard, to test the effectiveness of a platelet rich plasma therapy for the treatment of plantar fasciitis. A PRP injection into the origin of the plantar fascia will be tested as an alternative treatment to the use of cortisone injections.

PRP therapy has been used in the treatment of muscle and ligament injuries such as Achilles tendonitis, patellar tendonitis and tennis elbow, but is not a standard treatment for plantar fasciitis. Little evidence exists on the effectiveness of this treatment for tendon, ligament and muscle conditions. The technique can help to stimulate growth and repair by increasing certain growth factors. The side effects from PRP therapy are considerably lower than the use of cortisone injections, although the treatment does risk physical damage being caused to the nerves in the heel as with cortisone injections.

Test subjects will receive 3ml injection of platelet rich plasma or 3ml of saline, and a heel cup and physiotherapy will be provided to both groups. A heel cup and physiotherapy will be used without injection by the third group in the study. Patients will be provided with a Foot Function Index and SF-36 questionnaire at 1, 2, 3, 6 and 12 month intervals. The study is being completed in Denmark, and is sponsored by Kolding Sygehus.

Further details of the trial including inclusion/exclusion criteria is available from clinicaltrials.gov, reference NCT01509274

Tagged as: clinical trials, foot orthoses, foot orthoses for the treatment of plantar fasciitis, plantar fasciitis, plantar fasciitis treatment, platelet rich plasma therapy, treatment for plantar fasciitis