Foot and Ankle Pain

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What is foot and ankle pain?

 

Our feet and ankles are among the most complicated and hard-working parts of our bodies. It is made up of 26 bones and 33 tiny joints that are kept together by a network of soft tissue that includes muscles, ligaments, tendons, blood vessels, and nerve endings.

As most of us have been using our feet since we learnt to walk, we have probably experienced foot and ankle pain at some point in our lives. The majority of occurrences of foot & ankle discomfort are temporary and induced by injuries on the soft tissue such as sprains or strains. Pain that appears to be worsening, does not subside or lasts more than a few months may be caused by structural changes in the foot or ankle such as bunions that will need bunion surgery in severe cases. Other times, it can also be a sign of an underlying ailment.

 

Some first aid treatment you can do at home

 

Over-the-counter treatment can help alleviate the pain in your ankle and feet. If ingesting or applying painkillers does not solve the pain, you can opt for the first-aid procedure known as R-I-C-E.

 

Rest

By adding weight to the affected area, try to steady it and move lightly from time to time. Avoid doing strenuous activities like walking or standing for long periods to lessen the pain.


Ice

A cold compress can be applied to strained muscles. This treatment typically works if the pain you are experiencing is caused by overworked muscles.


Compression

Try to wrap a bandage or cloth around the affected area. If the affected area is suspected to be dislocated, it is helpful and a must to use compression to manage the pain and avoid further damage.


Elevate

Elevating your foot and ankle in case of a painful sensation can alleviate the condition. Try placing them on top of a pillow to induce comfort.

When to call a doctor for foot and ankle diagnosis?

If the first-aid doesn’t work and the pain persists for days, it is best to consult your doctor. They will take note of any bruising and swelling, and conduct a physical examination to assess if the injury is interfering with your movement and posture. When the condition cannot be diagnosed from a physical examination, other tests such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), x-rays, and blood testing may be required.

Bunion Surgery

Bunion surgery often entails making an incision on the top or side of the big toe joint and removing or realigning soft tissue and bone. This is done to alleviate discomfort and restore proper joint alignment.

Foot & Ankle Fractures

A fractured ankle is defined as a fracture or multiple fractures of one or more of the three bones that make up the ankle joint: the tibia, the fibula, and the talus. Depending on the severity of the fracture, various treatments are available.

Ankle Arthroscopy

Ankle arthroscopy is a medical procedure that examines or repairs the tissues inside or around your ankle using a small camera and surgical equipment. The camera is known as an arthroscope. The method enables the doctor to diagnose and correct issues with your ankle without making deeper incisions in the skin and tissue.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is an injury of the fibrous tissue known as plantar fascia that links your heel bone to your toes on the sole of your foot. Plantar fasciitis can result in excruciating heel discomfort.

Diabetic Foot Ulcers

A diabetic foot ulcer is an open wound that develops in roughly 15% of diabetic individuals and is most typically found on the bottom of the foot. 6% of persons who acquire a foot ulcer will be hospitalised owing to infection or another ulcer-related condition.

Flatfeet and High Arched Feet

Flat feet, also known as fallen arches, are associated with a lack of arch at the soles of the feet. The flat foot develops when the tendons that connect the joints of the foot become slack, flattening the region where an arch would typically be.

Ankle Arthritis

Arthritis is a painful sensation of one or more joints. It can cause pain and stiffness in any joint in the body, although it is most commonly found in the tiny joints of the foot and ankle.

Total Ankle Replacement

Ankle replacement, also known as ankle arthroplasty, is a surgical treatment that uses prosthetic components to replace the injured articular surfaces of the human ankle joint.