Heel Bumps May Be Haglund’s Deformity

Have you noticed a bump on the back of your heel just where the top of your shoe hits the skin? This bony enlargement is called Haglund’s deformity. Also called “pump bump” because women who wear pump-type shoes often have them, these growths form at the back of the heel bone near where the Achilles tendon is attached.

Heredity can contribute to this condition as can high arches. Those who walk on the outside of the feet as well as those with a tight Achilles tendon are more likely to develop this growth. Certain footwear with rigid backs like work boots, pumps and ice skates can contribute to the development of Haglund’s deformity.

These enlarged tissues cause pain and swelling. At times the irritated skin blisters from rubbing on the back of the shoes. Haglund’s deformity sufferers can also develop bursitis from the repeated rubbing.

Treating Haglund’s Deformity

This painful condition sometimes responds positively to home treatment. Apply ice frequently to the irritated area. Change your shoes often to give your heels a rest and add heel pads to shoe backs to relieve excess pressure.

Open-heeled shoes like clogs are a good idea to eliminate the rubbing. But wearing shoes with no heels is not a good idea for those who suffer from bunions or tendonitis.

If after trying these conservative measures your pain continues or the bump becomes bigger, it’s time to visit us here at Advanced Foot & Ankle Center. We will carefully examine your feet and take x-rays right here in our office to rule out any other complications.

The goal of our treatments will be to relieve your pain and reduce pressure to allow the bump to shrink gradually. Treatment options include:

• Custom-fitted orthotics can relieve pressure by changing the position of your foot in your shoe. Over-the-counter heel lifts or arch supports may also work well.
• Oral anti-inflammatory medications can relieve your pain, as well as topical anti-inflammatory products applied directly to the bump.
• Foot immobilization may be necessary for severe inflammation. A soft cast or walking boot may be prescribed to allow healing by immobilizing the area.

After trying these methods for a period of time, if you still have pain we will discuss surgery on the area to re-shape the heel bone.

To minimize your risk of Haglund’s deformity, choose backless shoes or those with non-rigid backs. If you have a high arch or a tight Achilles tendon, always wear any prescribed orthotics and stretch the tendon regularly.

We Can Help with Haglund’s Deformity and Any Other Heel Pain

If you have a pump bump or any other foot or ankle pain, please call Dr. Paul Betschart, board certified podiatrist. He has extensive experience in all types of heel pain and will quickly diagnose your problem. You can contact us at our Danbury office at (203) 791-0466 or our Middlebury office at (203) 754-2249 for an appointment or via the website. Don’t delay treatment for Haglund’s deformity – we can resolve your pain.

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