Send to

Choose Destination
Foot Ankle Int. 2012 Mar;33(3):202-7.

Ultrasonographic evaluation of low energy extracorporeal pulse activated therapy (EPAT) for chronic plantar fasciitis.

Author information

William Osler Health System, Division of Orthopaedics, 89 Humber College Boulevard, Suite 106, Toronto, Ontario M9V 488, Canada.



Ultrasonographic measurement of the plantar fascia can be used to objectively diagnose plantar fasciitis. The purpose of this study was to determine the long-term effectiveness of Extracorporeal Pulse Activated Therapy (EPAT) for the treatment of plantar fasciitis using ultrasonographic measurement as an objective outcome measure, with a minimum followup of 12 months.


Patients with chronic recalcitrant plantar fasciitis were prospectively recruited and underwent EPAT. Ultrasound measurement of the plantar fascia and patient-rated pain scores were collected before treatment and at followup (minimum of 12 months post-treatment). Twenty-five subjects (35 feet) met the inclusion criteria. The average followup time was 29.4 +/- 13.1 (M +/- SD; range, 12 to 54) months.


The average thickness of the plantar fascia of the symptomatic heels was 7.3 +/- 2.0 mm before treatment and 6.0 +/- 1.3 mm after treatment (p < 0.001). The average change in thickness of the treated heels was -1.3 mm (-0.8 to -1.8 mm; 95% CI, p < 0.0001). No correlation was found between length of followup and change in ultrasound measured plantar fascia thickness (r = -0.04, p = 0.818).


For patients with a greater than 12-month history of heel pain, EPAT can effectively decrease plantar fascia thickness as demonstrated objectively by ultrasound evaluation and reduce patient-reported pain. No relationship between length of followup and change in plantar fascia thickness was found after 12 months.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center