Why does it hurt when I run?

Did you know common running injuries such as heel pain and metatarsalgia and can be treated with minimal outpatient procedures? More than 40% of all runners report some type of “running pain” on a yearly basis.
Did you know, most of our patients report pain relief and increased distance with using custom orthotics!
Don’t Let Your Heel Pain and Other Running Injuries Keep You From Doing What You Enjoy!
For your chronic and acute pain,

Breakthrough Non-surgical Intervention Once Only Available to Top Athletes is now Affordable & Available to the Public.

PRP and SoundWave Therapy are one of the newest and  non-surgical intervention options for chronic pain, tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, neuroma and tendon ruptures.

According to The National Podiatric Association, 40% of all adults will experience heel pain or a heel injury in their lifetime!


Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is Using the patients own blood  plasma that has been enriched with platelets. As a concentrated source of autologous platelets, PRP contains several different growth factors and other cytokines that can stimulate healing of soft tissue.  Patient visits usually average 1 hour and the patient can return to normal activities within 24 hours. This treatment is completely outpatient, safe and a great non-surgical option for heel pain.


EPAT, also known as Shockwave Therapy (Extra Corporeal Shockwave  Therapy), is an FDA approved, highly effective, non-surgical treatment  of soft tissue injuries . It is typically used to treat the pain associated with heel spurs, Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and other conditions. It consist of sound waves which stimulate healing at the cellular level, including small blood vessels, tissues and nerves.

Breakthrough Non-Surgical Intervention Once Only Available to Top Athletes is now Affordable & Available to the Public at the AnkleNFootCenters


PRP and Sound Wave Therapy are one of the newest and non-surgical intervention options for chronic pain, tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, neuroma and tendon ruptures.

According to The American Podiatric Association, 40% of all adults will experience heel pain or a heel injury in their lifetime!


Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is Using the patient’s own blood plasma that has been enriched with platelets. As a concentrated source of autologous platelets, PRP contains several different growth factors and other cytokines that can stimulate healing of soft tissue.  Patient visits usually average 1 hour and the patient can return to normal activities within 24 hours. This treatment is completely outpatient, safe and a great non-surgical option for heel pain.

EPAT, also known as Shockwave Therapy (Extra Corporeal Shockwave Therapy), is an FDA approved, highly effective, non-surgical treatment of soft tissue injuries. It is typically used to treat the pain associated with heel spurs, Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and other conditions.

It consists of sound waves which stimulate healing at the cellular level, including small blood vessels, tissues and nerves.

                                                 Additional Information

Heel Spur

A bony projection extending from the bottom or back of the calcaneus (heel bone).

Pain occurs when the plantar fascia and surrounding muscles pull and tear the periosteum on the calcaneus (heel bone).


Overweight, overwork or excess physical activity. Tight Achilles tendon.  High or low arch foot. Limb length discrepancy. Pulling or tearing of the ligaments & muscles that insert into the heel on the bottom or back of the foot. This tearing of the soft tissues becomes repaired by bone growth which is known as a spur


Pain in heel first thing in the morning when standing that may or may not improve with activity. Constant dull heel pain. Pain in the heel at the end of the day


Proper stretching of the tight ligaments & muscles. Oral anti-inflammatories such as Advil or Tylenol for two to three weeks. PRP or Shock-Wave Treatment. Biomechanical analysis and Orthotics. Physical therapy. Surgery as a last alternative after more than 4-6 months of untreatable pain.

Plantar Fasciitis

A painful inflammation of the bottom of the foot between the ball of the foot and the heel.


There are several possible causes of plantar fasciitis, including:

  • Wearing high heels
  • Gaining weight
  • Increased walking, standing, or stair-climbing.

If you wear high-heeled shoes, including western-style boots, for long periods of time, the tough, tendon like tissue of the bottom of your foot can become shorter.  This layer of tissue is called fascia.  Pain occurs when you stretch fascia that has shortened.  This painful stretching might happen, for example, when you walk barefoot after getting out of bed in the morning.

If you gain weight, you might be more likely to have plantar fasciitis, especially if you walk a lot or stand in shoes with poor heel cushioning.  Normally there is a pad of fatty tissue under your heel bone.  Weight gain might break down this fat pad and cause heel pain.

Runners may get plantar fasciitis when they change their workout and increase their mileage or frequency of workouts.  It can also occur with a change in exercise surface or terrain, or if your shoes are worn out and don’t provide enough cushion for your heels.

If the arches of your foot are abnormally high or low, you are more likely to develop plantar fasciitis than if your arches are normal.


The main symptom of plantar fasciitis is heel pain when you walk.  The pain may also present itself in any area of the arch.  You may also feel pain when you stand and possibly even when you are resting.  This pain typically occurs first thing in the morning after you get out of bed, when your foot is placed flat on the floor.  The pain occurs because you are stretching the plantar fascia.  The pain usually lessens with more walking, but you may have it again after periods of rest.

You may feel no pain when you are sleeping because the position of your feet during rest allows the fascia to shorten and relax.


Rest, ice pack to the heel, prescribe anti-inflammatory, such as aspirin or ibuprofen and stretching.  All these treatments help to decrease pain and inflammation. Newer non-surgical treatment, such as PRP or Shockwave, Orthotics, whether custom or over-the-counter, may be part of your treatment, as well as the prevention in the future.

If your heel pain is not relieved by the treatments described above, your health care provider may recommend physical therapy.    A splint may be fitted to the calf of your leg and foot, to be worn at night to keep your foot stretched during sleep.  Surgery is rarely necessary.


The best way to prevent plantar fasciitis is to wear shoes that are well made and fit your feet.  This is especially important when you exercise or walk a lot or stand for a long time on hard surfaces.  Get new athletic shoes before your old shoes stop supporting and cushioning your feet.

You should also:

  • Avoid repeated jarring to the heel.
  • Maintain a healthy weigh
  • Stretch your Achilles tendons (calves)


Met your deductible?



Let your insurance WORK for YOU!
                               DON’T let those funds go to waste!  and also SAVE $100
  Orthotics made in 2016 ? -Act now for an additional  $65 off  your second pair!
Any new Foot or Ankle problem entitles you to a one-time $35 discount *
   *new balances only please
The Doctors at Ankle N Foot Centers are pros at treating athletes, sports injuries, other foot & ankle problems, and even your toenail & skin problems.
Don’t let that nagging Foot or Ankle problem follow you into the next year.
    Book Now!
    Offers end 12/30/16

Have you reached your DEDUCTIBLE?

cr-money-ah-high-deductible-insurance-poor-consumers-02-16Let your insurance WORK for YOU!

It is nearing the end of the year and that means 2 things; a lot of people have met their yearly deductible and some have HRA and HSA Funds left in their accounts.

         NOW is a great time to be seen for that foot and ankle pain you have put off for so long!

Take advantage and let our Doctors make a treatment plan that is right for YOU!



The doctors at Ankle and Foot Centers are pros at treating athletes and sports injuries.

Our physicians have studied biomechanics for 45 years combined, and some are athletes and have personal knowledge of sports orthotics. As experts in this field, we can diagnose foot and ankle issues and design an orthotic for your symptoms.

If you’ve been suffering this winter, schedule a visit so you can get back on your feet this spring!

For more information, visit our website.

Post Marathon RECOVERY!


22% of Marathon Runners report some type of injury after their race.

While we all know the importance of Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation, but what happens days after your injury and the pain is still there?

Knowing the difference between normal soreness after an event and an actual injury makes all the difference. TIME is a huge factor in recovery; even if it’s not a significant injury, by going to the doctor early on, you ensure a much easier treatment plan with a greater likelihood of a rapid return to training.

Bring in your Marathon Number and get a

Post Run Evaluation for only $20 out-of-pocket!


BUY a new orthotic and get a FREE Refurb on your current pair**

*Valid Insurance must be billed

Make An Appointment




      Let our Specialists Help You Prepare, Fix and Recover from Your Endurance Goals!

Orthotics & Braces
Injury Rehab 
 On Site Diagnostics
Lower Extremity Pain Evaluation 
$29 OFF September Discount*
FREE refurbish of your current orthotics with purchase of a new pair **
*May be applied towards any NEW services or fees only
**Purchased pair can be self pay or Insurance covered pair

Did you KNOW?

The average runner has 1-2 running injuries a year and most are left untreated, resulting in down time, slower recovery and 62% of the time an increased chance of  re-injury!
The doctors at Ankle N Foot Centers are pros at treating Athletes and
Sports Injuries.
For more information,  visit our website.


August is Heel Pain Awareness Month


Are you suffering from heel pain? 

Heel pain is never normal! Over 2 million Americans seek treatment for heel pain each year.  The AnkleNFoot Centers are known worldwide for having the latest & most proven treatments & technologies including custom orthotics, Protein Rich Plasma Treatments, Shockwave therapy, Biomechanical Evaluation & Physical Therapy.

Although Plantar Fasciitis is the leading cause of heel pain there are many more causes – Get the right diagnosis & treatment options today!

If you or a friend suffer from Heel Pain-Take advantage of our $40 off New Patient Visit for any form of foot or ankle pain-for August is Heel Pain Awareness Month

To schedule your No-Wait appointment to End Your Heel Pain call  312-612-5000 or book an online appointment HERE.


Easy Ways to Avoid Running Injuries

foot-type-280x246The prevailing attitude of many exercisers is that injuries are a normal part of running, and most injuries just magically appear. “Not so,” says Dr. George Tsatsos, Medical Director of the AnkleNFootCenters.com Clinics in Chicago. “Research clearly shows that the majority of injuries can be tracked to a certain cause—such as over-training—and with little planning runners can avoid most common sports injuries. In fact, research indicates that running not only does not increase a person’s risk of developing arthritis, even those with arthritis are not injuring themselves further by running.”

The most commonly injured areas include the arch and heel region, lower leg, knee, Achilles tendon, and forefoot. Running injuries are usually caused by overuse, faulty biomechanics, and lack of flexibility.

OVERUSE INJURIES. The majority of aches and pains are overuse injuries. Each running step requires your body to absorb three to four times its weight, and the repetitive stress of this shock can lead to breakdown and injury. Luckily, overuse injuries can be prevented with proper training. Following these guidelines can help reduce your risk of overuse injury:

  • Build mileage slowly. Increase by no more than 10% a week or 20% every two weeks.
  • Follow hard days with easy recovery days.
  • Do not routinely increase your weekly mileage Plan easy and hard weeks.
  • Replacing a day of running with swimming, bicycling, in-line skating,

or stair climbing will give you an aerobic workout while resting your running muscles.

  • Your risk of overuse injuries rises dramatically as your weekly mileage goes above 40 to 50 miles. Maintain this level only if you can do so relativelypain-free.
  • Racing places enormous stress on your body. Plan a racing schedule that allows enough recovery between events. Run easy at least one day for each mile of a race.

BIOMECHANICS. The relationship of muscles and joints to how you run is called biomechanics. Faulty biomechanics greatly increase your risk of injury. The most common example is pronation of the joint below the ankle, which may be noticed as partial or complete collapsing of the arch and rolling in of the ankle as your foot lands.

To determine if you have improper biomechanics, look for abnormal shoe wear patterns. Wearing shoes on the inside signifies excessive pronation. Have a friend watch you run and note from behind if the insides of your ankles roll inward. If so, you probably over-pronate. If you feel you have faulty biomechanics and are often injured, see a sports-medicine podiatrist for an analysis of your running style and shoe wear.

      FLEXIBILITY. Running has many benefits, but increased flexibility is not one of them. In fact, as running strengthens your leg muscles, it also shortens and tightens them. Tight muscles and tendons restrict your range of motion. Stretch before and after running.

Let’s now take a closer look at some of the more common aches and pains of running.

Aches and Pains 1-1-1.1

PLANTAR FASCIITIS. Pain in the heel or arch area is often plantar fasciitis, or heel spur syndrome. This is an inflammation of a fibrous band of tissue which stretches from the heel to the toes. Pain may be present in the morning, after rest, and after running; it’s usually worse upon waking and at the start of a run. Chronic plantar fasciitis may lead to the formation of heel bone spurs. Flat feet and high-arch feet are prone to this injury. Treatment may include a combination of rest, stretching, taping, different shoes, arch supports or custom orthotics, and anti-inflammatories.

KNEE PAIN. One common knee injury is patella-femoral compression syndrome (also known as chrondromalacia of the patella). This occurs when the knee cap slams into the femur, the bone behind the kneecap. Patella-femoral compression syndrome is often caused by excessive pronation or muscle weakness around the knee. Rest and icing should reduce temporary pain. If it is caused by pronation, shoe inserts may help to reduce further flare-ups. Strengthening your quadriceps will help if it is caused by weakness around the knee.

Another common cause of knee pain is iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS), which causes pain on the outside of the knee. The onset of pain is usually slow and occurs after running a certain distance. The major causes of ITBS are excessive internal rotation of the leg and pronation of the sub-talar joint. Both cause the ITB to be stretched over a bony prominence of the femur (the bone in your thigh), which leads to irritation and subsequent pain. Treatment includes rest, icing, eliminating over-pronation, and stretching the ITB.

ACHILLES TENDINITIS. Tight calf muscles, poor stretching habits, and too much running on hard surfaces and hills may result in Achilles tendinitis. This is a progressive degeneration and weakness of the tendon, usually just above its attachment to the heel bone. It is often necessary to stop running until the injury is healed. Heel lifts, icing, and anti-inflammatories in conjunction with rest often speed healing. Achilles tendinitis can often be avoided with good stretching habits.

SHIN SPLINTS. Muscle and tendon weakness in the front or inside of the lower leg may result in sharp pain in these areas, often called shin splints. Stress fractures may occur if shin splints are left untreated. Excessive pronation, increasing mileage too fast, running on hard surfaces, and downhill running are leading causes. Beginning runners are also susceptible to shin splints because of the new stress placed on the lower legs. Initial treatment consists of rest, icing, and anti-inflammatories. To prevent shin splints, strengthen the muscles of the lower leg.

FOREFOOT PAIN. Many problems develop in the forefoot because of improper and excessive weight transfer during the propulsion phase of running, including bunions, hammertoes, black toenails, and metatarsal stress fractures. If swelling is present with pain in the forefoot, suspect a stress fracture and stop running. Seek the opinion of a specialist before resuming running.

TREATING INJURIES. Injuries often respond quickly if treated early and properly. Rest and icing are your first line of defense. If you have acute pain or pain that alters your normal running motion, stop running and don’t resume training until the pain is gone. If you have minor aches which don’t affect your running motion, reduce your running and apply ice to painful areas for 10 to 15 minutes after a run. If you have swelling, apply compression and elevate the affected leg.

Self-treatment has its limits. If you have acute pain which does not respond to rest, see a sports-medicine specialist. Also see a specialist if you have a chronic injury to a given body part, because this probably means you have an underlying condition that needs to be corrected, such as a problem with pronation or lack of flexibility.

For more answers to your specific injury questions, contact AnkleNFootCenters.com at 312 612-5000



Stumped by Snowboots? Fashion May Not Function

Winter Storm Jonas may have spared Chicago, but stepping into the frigid outdoors still requires bundling up.

Most of us who’ve braved a Windy City winter know to invest in a puffy, down-filled coat, thick gloves and a warm hat.

But what sort of winter boots are best for your feet?

While it’s common to see women wearing colorful Hunter rain boots or fur-lined Uggs, what’s the perfect footwear for keeping feet warm and dry with enough traction for ice and snow?

Dr. Ryan Holmbeck, a podiatrist at Ankle N Foot Centers – which has five clinics across the city and suburbs – said the right winter footwear is essential to one’s overall health.

“Keeping your feet dry in the winter months is perhaps even more important than keeping your feet dry in other seasons,” Holmbeck said. “Cold, wet feet in winter months can lead to serious problems.”

For one, he said, chilly, moist feet can cause frostbite — especially in those with diabetes.  In addition, the cool, damp environment inside boots is perfect for fungal growth. This can infect the skin and lead to athlete’s foot, or target the nails and cause thick discoloration. These infections are often difficult, costly and time-consuming to treat. They can also lead to bacterial infections of the feet or nails.

Meanwhile, the fit of boots is also important. Poor fit can result in foot and ankle pain, heel or tendon pain — even nerve pain. Make sure to try on the boots with the appropriate thickness of sock.

Last, but not least, does the boot have traction on ice? Are you wearing boots for fashion or function?

Here’s a look at some popular boots you’ll see on people’s feet this season – perhaps even your own – and the pros and cons of each.

Rain boots

Sometimes dubbed “wellies,” and produced in a rainbow of colors by brands such as Hunter, these boots are popular among women in Chicago – and their style is favored by celebs such as Kate Middleton and the Olsen twins.

Pros: They’re waterproof, and block rain or snow from soaking into socks. You can make them warmer by adding socks or specially made boot-liners.

Cons: Be prepared to pay if you want Hunter boots, often upwards of $150. There are cheaper brands, but the cheap ones may gap, let rain or snow soak in, or cause slipping in the snow.

Shearling boots
Let’s face it, Chicago gets cold. Even with socks, rain boots are no match for the next Polar Vortex. Fur-lined Uggs or copy-cats that are knit, down-filled or fleece-lined were made to withstand the sub-zero.

Pros: Uggs will still let you feel your feet while waiting for the CTA during a cold morning commute. These boots can also repel light, powdery snow.

Cons: They’re only warm as long as they’re dry. Step in enough slush or a puddle, and your feet will wind up wet.

Duck boots
Made popular by companies such as L.L. Bean, the boots are part-rain boot with a waterproof rubber coating on the foot and laces criss-crossing the front of the leg.

Pros: Opt for a shearling-lined version for a boot that’s both warm and waterproof.
Cons: Stripping off the shoes – especially if the laces are caked with snow and your hands are still gloved — can be messy and cumbersome. In addition, the shape could potentially put pressure on the toes.

Snow boots
It may seem obvious, but take note of how many people trudge around town in loafers, tennis shoes – even heels. It’s Chicago – winter snow is as certain as death and taxes. We recommend visiting a retailer such as North Face or Columbia for boots that are warm and snow-proof. Since the holidays are over, odds are good of finding boots on sale.

There are often no laces, and many can be pulled off – meaning you often don’t even have to deal with a zipper.

Cons: Sorry, you’re still in Chicago – not Florida. It’s going to be cold for a few more months, and you’re going to need snowboots.

Still stumped about which boots to buy? Consult the experts at Ankle N Foot Centers. We may not be able to control the weather, but we can help you weather winter with advice about the right boots.