A bone spur is extra growth on a bone, usually in the foot. These extra growths, or spurs, are made from calcium deposits. These bony projections form along joints too, and are often seen in people suffering from arthritis. These spurs can limit the motion of a joint and can be painful. While spurs can occur in any joint, they are most frequently seen in the feet - particularly the heel, hips, knees, back and shoulders.
Symptoms will vary according to the location. Common symptoms are back or neck pain. Headache may also be a symptom if the spur is in the shoulders. Pain will be felt in the thigh if the spur is in the lumbar spine. Other symptoms include numbness, tingling and progressive weakness in the arms and legs due to nerve compression. If the bone spur is on the heel, there is pain when standing and walking that is relieved when sitting. Some people have no symptoms, and bone spurs are only found when they are being examined for another problem.
Shoes that do not fit correctly may contribute to the development of spurs on heels. With arthritis, parts of the bones can be damaged, and bone spurs may occur as the body tries to increase the surface area of a damaged joint to better distribute the weight. Spurs can also be a symptom of spondylosis, plantar fasciitis and spinal stenosis. Some factors that may accelerate their growth are lifestyle, nutrition, accidents and injuries.
If you are experiencing pain, see a physician for a diagnosis. Once spurs have been diagnosed, you may need physical therapy, deep tissue massage or other treatments. If your range of motion is severely limited or becomes excessively painful, you may need surgery.
Herbal remedies for arthritis may also be useful for management of bone spurs.
Essential oils may be used in a bath, massage, burner or compress and the following herbs may provide relief for the discomfort associated with spurs: