Diagnosis

The diagnosis is made based on the medical history and physical examination. During the exam, your doctor will check for areas of tenderness in your foot. Where your pain is situated can help determine its cause.

Imaging tests

Usually no tests are necessary. Your doctor might suggest an X-ray or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to make sure your pain isn't being caused by another problem, such as a stress fracture or a pinched nerve.

Sometimes an X-ray shows a spur of bone projecting forward from the heel bone. In the past, these bone spurs were often blamed for heel pain and removed surgically. But many people who have bone spurs on their heels have no heel pain.