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A bony enlargement on the back of your heel bone. This abnormality can trigger bursitis.


Enlarged bony prominence on back of heel

Pain in the outer portion of the heel bone

Blisters on heel caused by shoe rubbing against the bump


Wearing stiff, closed-heel shoes, such as pump-style high heels –condition is often referred to as “pump bump”

High foot arch, tight Achilles tendon, or tendency to walk on outside of heel


Treatment focus is on pain relief and taking pressure off your heel bone. If conservative measures are ineffective, surgical correction is an option.

Heel pads, heel lifts, or arch supports

Custom orthotic supports

Ice to the area after removing shoes

Topical anti-inflammatory medication

Over the counter pain medication, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve), as needed

Heeled backless shoes

Custom-made cast or walking boot to immobilize area

Cortisone injection for severe pain

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Retrocalcaneal bursitis and Haglund’s Deformity are painful conditions involving the back of the heel bone.

A fluid filled sack termed the retrocalcaneal bursa is sandwiched between the back of the heel bone and the Achilles tendon attachment. The bursa functions to decrease the friction from the heel bone on the Achilles tendon during walking. Tight calf muscles, prominence of the heel bone including bone spurs at the attachment of the Achilles tendon can cause inflammation and pain to this region.

The pain associated with Haglund’s Deformity also termed “pump bump” is a result of abnormal friction that occurs from the shoes heel counter against the outer portion of the heel bone. The pain from Haglund’s Deformity is usually more localized on the outside portion of the heel while the pain from retrocalcaneal bursitis usually fans out to the whole back of the heel at the attachment of the Achilles tendon.

Calf stretching, activity limitation as well as inflammatory medications and ice are standard treatment recommendations for both of these conditions. Additional treatments including night splints, cast boots and cortisone injections may be warranted based on the severity of the pain. Firm heel lifts used within an athletic shoe, heeled dress shoes or boots, clogs and most preferably heeled backless shoes are ideal aids in treatment. Heeled shoe wear decreases the mechanical load on the Achilles tendon and bursa during walking which substantially aids to recovery.

Haglunds Deformity Discussion Board

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