Pump Bump Causes and Treatment

Pump Bump Overview


What is Pump Bump

Pump bump” is medically known as “Haglund’s deformity“, which is a bony enlargement on the back of the heel. Usually shoes rubs against the area, causing skin and Achilles tendon irritation.  This often leads to bursitis, which is an inflammation of the bursa (a fluid-filled sac between the tendon and bone).


What Causes Pump Bump

Haglund’s deformity is often called “pump bump” because  the backs of high heel shoes (Pump-style shoes) rubs on the area and aggravates the enlargement when walking. Usually any rigid back shoies can cuase this irritation and pain.

The following foot condition can predispose one to have a pump bump:

  • A high-arched foot (pes cavus)
  • A tight Achilles tendon (Ankle Equines)


Symptoms of Pump Bump

Symptoms may include:

  • Enlarged bump on the back of the heel
  • Painful bump on the back of the heel
  • Swelling in the back of the heel
  • Redness over the bump on the back of the heel


How is Pump Bump Diagnosed

Usually, pump bump is diagnosed clinically but x-rays may be ordered to evaluate the structure of the heel bone and the foot.


Non-Surgical Treatment of Pump Bump

Non-surgical treatment is aimed at reducing the inflammation of the bursa. Non-surgical treatment can include one or more of the following:

  • Medication such as ibuprofen, may be recommended to reduce the pain and inflammation.
  • Icing the area. Use ice for 10-15 minutes for every 1 hour.
  • Stretching exercises help relieve tension from the Achilles tendon Abductor hallucis muscle strain
  • Heel lifts to decrease pressure on the area Abductor hallucis muscle strain
  • Heel pads to reduce friction and irritation on the area Abductor hallucis muscle strain
  • Shoe modification. Open back shoes to minimize irritation.
  • Physical therapy can help to reduce inflammation and pain
  • Orthotic devices (shoe inserts) Abductor hallucis muscle strain
  • Immobilization to allow the area to calm down and heal itself Abductor hallucis muscle strain
  • Topical pain relieving gel Abductor hallucis muscle strain


When Is Surgery Needed for Pump Bump

Usually surgery is needed if patient has failed conservative treatment options



Pump Bump / Posterior Heel Spur
Pump Bump / Posterior Heel Spur