Haglund’s Deformity (Retrocalcaneal Bursitis)

The heel is present at the back of the foot below the ankle. It consists of Achilles tendon (a fibrous tissue connecting the calf muscle and the heel) and the bursa (a sac between the tendon and bone containing fluid). Haglund's deformity is a condition in which a bony enlargement is formed in the heel. The soft tissues present at the back of your heel become irritated due to the rubbing of the extra bony growth. This deformity may also be characterized by bursitis (inflammation of the bursa). This condition may develop due to repeated pressure on the back of the heel. Haglund's deformity is also termed as “pump bump” disease.


Haglund's disease is mainly caused due to the use of shoes with a rigid or hard back. These types of shoes create a lot of pressure on the heel while walking and hence can cause enlargement of the bone. This condition may also be hereditary; inherited foot structures such as a high-arched foot, tight Achilles tendon (tendon of the heel) and walking outside the heel may be a cause for the extra growth of the bone.


The symptoms involved in this condition include:

  • Pain in the region where the Achilles tendon attaches to the heel
  • A bump at the back of the heel
  • Redness of the inflamed tissue
  • Swelling in the heel


Your doctor can diagnose Haglund's deformity by looking at your feet. He/she may also take an X-ray to confirm the diagnosis and get a detailed view of the heel region.


Treatment for this condition can be both surgical and non-surgical depending on the severity of the condition.

Non-surgical treatment

This treatment is mainly indicated to reduce inflammation and pain. The different types of treatment include,

  • Taking Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications
  • Ice to reduce the swelling
  • Exercises which help to relieve tension from the tendons
  • Placing heel lifts or heel pads in your shoes, so that less pressure falls on your heel
  • Modifying your shoes to avoid irritation in the heel
  • Immobilizing your heel

Surgical treatment

Your doctor suggests surgical treatment only if the non-surgical methods do not show positive results or improvement. He/she will determine the best suited surgical method for your treatment.