Chronic Plantar Fasciitis: Effect of Platelet-Rich Plasma, Corticosteroid, and Placebo

Orthopedics. 2016 Mar-Apr;39(2):e285-9. doi: 10.3928/01477447-20160222-01. Epub 2016 Feb 25.


Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of heel pain. It is a disabling disease in its chronic form. It is a degenerative tissue condition of the plantar fascia rather than an inflammation. Various treatment options are available, including nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroid injections, orthosis, and physiotherapy. This study compared the effects of local platelet-rich plasma, corticosteroid, and placebo injections in the treatment of chronic plantar fasciitis. In this double-blind study, patients were divided randomly into 3 groups. Local injections of platelet-rich plasma, corticosteroid, or normal saline were given. Patients were assessed with the visual analog scale for pain and with the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS) Ankle and Hindfoot score before injection, at 3 weeks, and at 3-month follow-up. Mean visual analog scale score in the platelet-rich plasma and corticosteroid groups decreased from 7.44 and 7.72 preinjection to 2.52 and 3.64 at final follow-up, respectively. Mean AOFAS score in the platelet-rich plasma and corticosteroid groups improved from 51.56 and 55.72 preinjection to 88.24 and 81.32 at final follow-up, respectively. There was a significant improvement in visual analog scale score and AOFAS score in the platelet-rich plasma and corticosteroid groups at 3 weeks and at 3-month follow-up. There was no significant improvement in visual analog scale score or AOFAS score in the placebo group at any stage of the study. The authors concluded that local injection of platelet-rich plasma or corticosteroid is an effective treatment option for chronic plantar fasciitis. Platelet-rich plasma injection is as effective as or more effective than corticosteroid injection in treating chronic plantar fasciitis.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Chronic Disease
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Fasciitis, Plantar / therapy*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Injections
  • Male
  • Methylprednisolone / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Platelet-Rich Plasma*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Visual Analog Scale


  • Glucocorticoids
  • Methylprednisolone