When it comes to foot and ankle injuries, it’s easy to push yourself too hard and make the problem worse. At Arcadia Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Phoenix, Jeffrey McAlister, DPM, FACFAS, offers patients both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options to help heal foot and ankles fractures before they become debilitating. Call or book an appointment online today to learn more about the treatments that Dr. McAlister provides.
Fractures are partial to full breaks, ranging from a minute tear or crack in one small bone to a major break in which your bone protrudes through your skin.
When left untreated, even small stress fractures in the foot and ankle can impact your ability to walk. Over time, an injury that fails to heal properly may even cause problems with your gait.
A fracture in the foot or ankle occurs when too much stress and pressure is placed on your foot, ankle joint, or bones that make up that joint (tibia, fibula, and talus).
Some common foot and ankle injury causes include:
Patients who exercise regularly and play sports are at a higher risk of developing a foot and ankle injury than those who don’t.
The treatment plan Dr. McAlister recommends depends entirely on the severity of your foot or ankle injury.
First Dr. McAlister will take an X-ray to make sure that your ankle is stable enough to avoid surgery. If the fibula or medial malleolus, the bump on the inner side of your ankle, is fractured, but still stable, he may be able to protect the ankle while it heals with help from a high-top tennis shoe, brace, or short leg cast.
If you have a posterior malleolus fracture in the back of your tibia, near the ankle joint, then it’s imperative that you seek treatment right away to lower your risk of developing arthritis later. Once Dr. McAlister confirms that your ankle is stable, he will likely recommend wearing a removable brace or short leg cast.
Depending on the severity of your injury, Dr. McAlister may also integrate physical therapy into your treatment program.
Surgery is typically recommended if your ankle is unstable, or if Dr. McAlister determines that your injury will not heal properly on its own. The type of surgery you get depends on your injury location and the intensity of your fracture.
If Dr. McAlister suggests foot or ankle surgery to treat your injury, he will likely use plates and screws to remedy the problem and reduce pain. If the fracture is serious enough, he may even have to do a bone graft.
In many cases, physical therapy will also be integrated into your post-operative recovery plan to help the healing process go smoothly.
Call or book an appointment online today with Arcadia Orthopedics and Sports Medicine to learn more.