Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It is occurs when there is inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot called the plantar fascia. This band of tissue connects the heel bone to the toes.
It is common for patients with spine issue to present with a similar pattern of pain. As the nerves exit the spinal cord, they innervate different muscle groups, each nerve follows a distinct pattern down the extremities. The pathway for the S1 nerve is down the back of the leg to the heel of the foot. Patients may feel this heel pain and it can be confused with plantar fasciitis. It is important to distinguish the two by obtaining a proper history, physical exam and diagnostic imaging.