SAN ANTONIO -- Millions of Americans suffer from foot pain with many of them needing the attention of a doctor. One very common cause of foot pain is plantar fasciitis.

"I started having foot pain when I was playing indoor soccer," said Thomas Woolley, who had been playing the sport for about four months.

Woolley said when his heel started hurting he decided to try to treat it himself but waited a while to see a doctor.

"I tried to treat myself with stretches and rolls and what not but it would not just go away," Woolley said.

"If the symptoms persist and you are not getting anywhere with stretches or modification of insoles, we would definitely urge people to come in because there's a lot of stuff we can do to help this along," said Assistant Professor of Clinical at University of Texas Health Science Center with University Health System, Dr. Mike Langlois.

"I didn't want a shot or even surgery, but it was to the point where I needed to see someone," Woolley said.

Some of the causes of plantar fasciitis include an increase in physical activity, a new exercise regimen, and obesity or increased weight gain.

"Typically patients will experience a sharp pain when they get up from a period of rest. Often patients have an extreme amount of pain with their first step in the morning and periodically throughout the day if they stop and start again," Dr. Langlois said.

How it’s treated depends on the severity.

"Shoe modifications help a great deal. We can do custom molded insoles which kind of hold the foot in a corrected biomechanical position taking tension off the fascia," Dr. Langlois stated.

If that fails, doctors often try cortisone shots, or in extreme cases surgery. Woolley urged not to wait to step into the doctor if you feel pain.

"Dr. Google is right some of the time but not all of the time, and it's best to go see your local provider more quickly," Woolley said.

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