Intratissue Percutaneous Electrolysis vs Corticosteroid Infiltration for the Treatment of Plantar Fasciosis

Foot Ankle Int. 2018 Jun;39(6):704-711. doi: 10.1177/1071100718754421. Epub 2018 Feb 13.

Abstract

Background: Corticosteroid infiltration (CI) is commonly used for treatment of plantar fasciosis. In recent years, however, interest has grown in the use of intratissue percutaneous electrolysis (EPI) for the treatment of tendinopathies. The aim of our study was to compare the effectiveness of the above techniques in the treatment of plantar fasciosis.

Methods: The results achieved over a period of 1 year following the use of these techniques to treat plantar fasciosis were examined. There were 64 patients; 32 of whom were treated with ultrasound-guided EPI and 32 with ultrasound-guided CI. A clinical examination was performed and ultrasound taken before treatment and at 3, 6, and 12 months. Clinical assessments were made using a visual analog scale (VAS) to record pain and the Foot and Ankle Disability Index (FADI) to evaluate function. Ultrasound was used to determine the thickness of the plantar fascia.

Results: Both the ultrasound-guided EPI and CI techniques were associated with significant clinical and echographic improvements at 12 months post-treatment ( P < .001).

Conclusion: Both techniques were effective in the treatment of PF, providing excellent VAS pain and FADI results at 12 months. However, CI required fewer patient visits and appeared to provide somewhat better VAS and FADI results.

Level of evidence: Level III, retrospective comparative study.

Keywords: corticosteroid infiltration; intratissue percutaneous electrolysis; plantar fasciosis.

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / pharmacology
  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use*
  • Electrolysis
  • Fasciitis, Plantar / physiopathology
  • Fasciitis, Plantar / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Pain Measurement
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tendinopathy / physiopathology
  • Tendinopathy / surgery
  • Tendinopathy / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ultrasonography

Substances

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones