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A retrospective study of standing gastrocnemius-soleus stretching versus night splinting in the treatment of plantar fasciitis

updated

Tags: plantar fasciitis, taping, running, exercise, foot, stretch, devices, leg, limbs, pain problems, overuse injury, injury, tendinosis, controversy, debunkery, treatment, self-treatment, muscle

One article on PainSci cites Barry 2002: Complete Guide to Plantar Fasciitis

PainSci summary of Barry 2002: ?This page is one of thousands in the PainScience.com bibliography. It is not a general article: it is focused on a single scientific paper, and it may provide only just enough context for the summary to make sense. Links to other papers and more general information are provided at the bottom of the page, as often as possible.

From the abstract: “The night splint treatment group had a significantly shorter recovery time, fewer follow-up visits to recovery, and fewer total additional interventions compared to the [standing calf] stretching group.”

~ Paul Ingraham

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, yet the conservative treatment of plantar fasciitis is not standardized. This open retrospective study compared the effects of standing gastrocnemius-soleus stretching to a prefabricated night splint. One hundred and sixty patients with unilateral or bilateral plantar fasciitis were evaluated and treated according to the standard regimen in addition to either night splints or stretching. Seventy-one patients performed standing stretching of the gastrocnemius-soleus complex. Eighty-nine patients utilized the prefabricated night splint without standing stretching. The night splint treatment group had a significantly shorter recovery time (p < .001), fewer follow-up visits to recovery (p < .001), and fewer total additional interventions (p = .034) compared to the stretching group. Absolute body weight, body mass index, and age did not have a statistically significant effect on the time to recovery or additional interventions needed. The duration of pain prior to this treatment was a predictive factor and was associated with increased time to recovery and increased number of treatment interventions. Its was concluded that early treatment in a standardized four-tiered treatment approach, including the night splint without standing stretching of the gastrocnemius-soleus complex, speeds time to recovery.

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