Effect of monophasic pulsed current on heel pain and functional activities caused by plantar fasciitis

Med Sci Monit. 2015 Mar 20;21:833-9. doi: 10.12659/MSM.891229.


Background: Plantar fasciitis (PF) is a soft tissue disorder considered to be one of the most common causes of inferior heel pain. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of monophasic pulsed current (MPC) and MPC coupled with plantar fascia-specific stretching exercises (SE) on the treatment of PF.

Material and methods: Forty-four participants (22 women and 22 men, with a mean age of 49 years) diagnosed with PF were randomly assigned to receive MPC (n=22) or MPC coupled with plantar fascia-specific SE (n=22). Prior to and after 4 weeks of treatment, participants underwent baseline evaluation; heel pain was evaluated using a visual analogue scale (VAS), heel tenderness threshold was quantified using a handheld pressure algometer (PA), and functional activities level was assessed using the Activities of Daily Living subscale of the Foot and Ankle Ability Measure (ADL/FAAM).

Results: Heel pain scores showed a significant reduction in both groups compared to baseline VAS scores (P<0.001). Heel tenderness improved significantly in both groups compared with baseline PA scores (P<0.001). Functional activity level improved significantly in both groups compared with baseline (ADL/FAAM) scores (P<0.001). However, no significant differences existed between the 2 treatment groups in all post-intervention outcome measures.

Conclusions: This trial showed that MPC is useful in treating inferior heel symptoms caused by PF.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Electric Stimulation Therapy*
  • Fasciitis, Plantar / physiopathology*
  • Fasciitis, Plantar / therapy*
  • Female
  • Heel / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / physiopathology*
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome