What is that lump on the back of my heel?

The bony bump at the back of your heel bone is called a Haglund's deformity. This bump forms where the Achilles tendon attaches into the heel.

It is commonly known as “pump bump” due to its association with females who wear high heels… However we know that it can happen to anyone, and shoes are not the only thing to blame!

So what causes it?

The natural structure of one's foot may make them more prone to developing a Haglund's deformity. This can include a prominent heel bone, feet that roll out, tight achilles tendon, and high arches.

Footwear with a hard back (such as ice and roller skates, dress shoes, and steel toe work boots) can cause friction and aggravate a Haglund's deformity. It is essential that you ensure that your footwear is fitting you correctly.

When should I seek help and what can be done?

If you are experiencing a visible bump, swelling, or redness at the back of the heel, or generalised pain, or any rubbing and blistering where the bump is rubbing against your shoe.

Typically, most people get great results through conservative treatment alone. Although the actual bone structure is not able to be altered, your podiatrist will be able to work with you on ways to provide pain relief and improve quality of life.

Treatment Options:

There are a variety of treatment options available for this condition.

  • Use of a boot to offload the area (short term)
  • Footwear changes, advice, and modifications
  • Strengthening program to improve your calf strength
  • Footwear inserts to support those with high arches
  • Dry needling and stretches to lengthen the calf and alleviate a tight achilles tendon
  • Surgical referrals (for severe cases)

Come in and talk to us about treatment options specific to you!