Fat Pad Syndrome
Fat Pad Syndrome
Very similar to a Heel Bruise, Fat Pad Syndrome refers to an injury where there is a displacement of a portion of the fat pad that protects the heel – usually to one side of the heel or the other. It is most often the result of trauma from landing heel-first on a hard surface (after a jump or fall) or from prolonged standing or walking on hard surfaces with
inadequate protection from footwear. Some cases of Fat Pad Syndrome can be attributed to the aging process where over time, the fat pad flattens and displaces, losing its ability to absorb shock and protect the heel bone.
  • Persistent pain and tenderness over the bottom surface of the heel (often on one side) when standing and walking.
Pedorthic Management
  • Mild cases may resolve with the use of over-the-counter heel cups that can help to contain the fat pad and provide cushioning.
  • More severe cases may need to be treated with custom orthoses to stabilize the bones of the feet and provide more precise localized fat pad containment, heel protection and cushioning.
  • Supportive footwear that is torsionally stable (can’t be folded or twisted easily) with firm heel counters and soles that provide high levels of cushioning.
Other Treatments
  • Physical therapy modalities include rest and icing.