How to Treat a Pump Bump

The pump bump, or Haglund’s deformity as it is sometimes called, is a painful, bony protrusion that grows on the back of the heel. People who wear high-heeled shoes and high-backed leather work boots are susceptible to this condition, which forms as a response to the continuous pressure on the back of the heel that is caused by the shoes. While the bump itself is not usually painful, bursitis, blisters, and bleeding can occur from rubbing against your footwear.

Treatments for the pump bump include the following:

  • Prevent heel pressure—An easy way to avoid stress on the heel is to wear backless shoes or sandals that don’t put any pressure on your heel. Or, you can try heel cushions to prevent rubbing on the bump.
  • Custom orthotic shoe inserts—Custom made orthotic shoe inserts can be used to redirect pressure away from your heel. Arch supports and heel lifts can also mitigate complications of Haglund’s.
  • Topical and oral pain medications—Ibuprofen or Tylenol can be taken orally, or you can apply pain-relieving ointments directly.
  • Immobilization—In more extreme cases, a cast or rigid walking boot may be necessary to completely immobilize the foot while healing occurs, especially if surgery is required.

If the bony growth is still causing problems, or if the protrusion is large, heel surgery will be required to debride the bump and reshape the bone. An immobilizing boot will need to be worn for some time after the surgery, followed by physical therapy.

If you have a pump bump that needs attention, contact your foot care professional for the proper treatment. At Your Next Step, our team of board-certified podiatrists has access to advanced technologies, along with years of experience, to help diagnose and treat a variety of foot and ankle problems, including sports injuries, joint pain, toe deformities, nail fungus, chronic tendon pain, and skin problems. Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, and Dr. Aliza V. Eisen provide high-quality foot and ankle care to patients in the greater Philadelphia area at our offices conveniently located in Ardmore, Paoli, Woodlyn, and Downingtown. Please contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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