A recent large-scale study reviewed the effectiveness of physiotherapy for plantar fasciitis.
The researchers studied a database of 819 963 patients diagnosed with plantar fasciitis. Only 7.1% of these patients were prescribed physical therapy. Overall, patients sent to physical therapy received evidence-based treatment. These patients were given manual therapy (hands-on treatment) 87% of the time and supervised rehabilitative exercises 90% of the time. The researchers found that patients who received manual therapy as part of their treatment averaged fewer visits and had a lower cost of care of $340. These results support prior studies that show faster recovery time for those who receive evidence-based physical therapy for their foot pain.
Outcome: This study shows that despite strong evidence on the benefits of physical therapy for plantar fasciitis, very few patients were given this treatment. If you have foot pain, evidence suggests that physical therapy will help you recover faster and cost you less than if you do not receive this treatment. If you have been diagnosed with plantar fasciitis, physical therapy offers evidence-based treatment options to help you recover from your pain.
J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2017;47(2):56. doi:10.2519/jospt.2017.0501