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1. the hindmost part of the foot; called also calx.
2. the hindmost portion of an elongated structure, or something else comparable to the heel of the foot.
Thomas heel a shoe correction consisting of a heel one half inch longer and an eighth to a sixth of an inch higher on the inside; used to bring the heel of the foot into varus and to prevent depression in the region of the head of the talus.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. Proximal portion of the plantar surface of the foot.
2. Synonym(s): calx (2)
3. Synonym(s): distal end
[A.S. hēla]
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


a. The rounded posterior portion of the human foot under and behind the ankle.
b. The corresponding part of the hind foot of other vertebrates.
c. A similar anatomical part, such as the fleshy rounded base of the human palm or the hind toe of a bird.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


, pl. calces (kalks, kal'sēz)
1. Synonym(s): lime (1) .
2. The posterior rounded extremity of the foot.
Synonym(s): heel (1) .
[L. limestone]

dis·tal end

(dis'tăl end)
The posterior extremity of a dental appliance.
Synonym(s): heel (2) .
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


1. Proximal portion of plantar surface of foot.
2. Synonym(s): calx (2) .
3. Synonym(s): distal end.
[A.S. hēla]
Medical Dictionary for the Dental Professions © Farlex 2012

Patient discussion about heel

Q. Is there any good source for heel pain relief, besides NSAIDs? My heel pain is most severe at night when I sleep. It's as if the way I position my feet worsen the condition, but I'm at a loss to know how to position my feet. During the day my heels feel so but don't typically bother me.

A. I have found that keeping my feet flexed (the position they are in when standing) helps ease the pain of plantar facitis. I also don't let my feet get cold(wear socks)and keep heavy blankets and quilts off the feet. Placing a box under the covers at the foot of the bed will help keep the blankets up. Do try the exercises recommended on the above web sites. It usually resolves in about 6 months. Best wishes!

Q. I had sugery on a fractured heel what is the recovery process? Wanting to meet people who are going thru this now or have already recovered from this injury. What should I expect?

A. Hey doyen_98, I was wondering how the recovery was coming along. How long ago have you had the surgery?

Q. anyone knows how to stop hard skin on the feet from becoming cracked??? during summer my feet got lots of hard skin and in the heel area the skin actually got cracked kinda deep. it hurts now and the cracks are starting to get infected I guess... do u guys know how to solve this?? I know there are some creams for that but I thought maybe now it's too late for that and I need something stronger?

A. There are good creams for moisterizing the skin of your feet on a daily basis, however now that you feel they might be infected you should see a dermatologist for some better treatment.

More discussions about heel
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References in periodicals archive ?
"Many patients have asked which products I recommend they use on their dry skin and cracked heels since they have tried a handful of products with little or no relief.
For example, the soothing emu oil and lanolin in Garcoa Labs' Blue Goo Cracked Heel Foot Softener has made the product popular with diabetes patients.
Repair for Cracked Heels is a daily treatment to repair damaged tissue and rebuild the skin's protective layers to banish painful dry, cracked heels.
Heal and deeply condition worn and weathered heels with Cracked Heel Repair Push-Up Stick, a new product from Earth Therapeutics.
This miracle product not only saved faces (the peeling stopped within days) but, when used on cracked heels (barefoot much?), it was all soon butter-soft.
Apollo's Thera lotions help maintain healthy skin, providing superior moisturizing aid to skin affected by moderate to severe conditions such as general dryness, xerosis, ichthyosis, atopic dermatitis, cracked heels, scaliness, chapped or cracked hands, as well as the itching (pruritus) and discomfort associated with these conditions.
While most people associate Vaseline petroleum jelly to a quick remedy for simple issues like chapped lips, dry skin or cracked heels, it can also help address and prevent more pressing skin concerns.
After all, we don't want to face an uncertain future with open pores and cracked heels...
Luckily, cracked heels and neglected nails can easily be tackled at home with the right tools, techniques and solesoothing products.
Research by One Poll found that almost half of UK women cover up their feet during summer, with many citing hard, dry skin, discoloured nails and cracked heels as the main reasons why.