Posts for: December, 2018
An ankle sprain occurs when the foot rolls or twists to the point where a ligament inside stretches beyond its normal capacity. Ankle sprains are extremely common, with an estimated 25,000 sprains happening in the United States every day. Athletes and people who work outdoors or on uneven surfaces are at a higher risk for spraining their ankle. Regular wear of high-heeled shoes is also a risk factor.
Sprained ankles are diagnosed by degree; that is, the severity of the sprain and the symptoms it produces. Grade 1 sprains are the mildest, with minimal swelling and tenderness due to a slight ligament tear. Usually, Grade 1 sprains still allow for weight to be put on the ankle. Grade 2 sprains have a more significant injury to the ligament and, while walking may still be possible, it is painful. Grade 3 sprains are diagnosed when the affected ligament has sustained a complete tear and the ankle cannot bear weight. Grade 3 sprains typically display obvious bruising and swelling around the ankle.
The grade of an ankle sprain will determine the treatment. The tried-and-true RICE method - rest, ice, compression, and elevation - is usually sufficient for Grade 1 sprains. Refraining from walking, keeping the ankle elevated for the first two days, stabilizing the ankle with a compression dressing, and applying ice to reduce swelling helps the sprain resolve within 2 to 4 weeks. Grade 2 sprains also respond well to RICE treatment, although healing typically takes longer and a firmer immobilization device, like a splint, is typically recommended. Grade 3 sprains often require similar treatment used for ankle fractures; a cast or brace may be needed and surgery may be considered for some patients.
To ensure proper healing, it is important to follow the recommendations of your podiatrist. Attempting to return to normal activity too soon could result in a repeat injury or permanent ankle instability.
A small problem with your foot or ankle can quickly advance into a condition that affects walking or standing. Luckily, a podiatrist — a doctor who specializes in conditions of the feet and ankles — can help you find the best treatment plan to ensure you get quickly back on your feet. Find out more about foot and ankle pain and its treatments with Dr. Dallin Greene and Dr. Nathan Judd at Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute with locations in Butte, MT, and Bozeman, MT.
Where does foot and ankle pain come from?
The feet and ankles are more prone to injury and trauma than other parts of the body. This makes pinpointing a reason for your foot or ankle pain more difficult than, for example, a sore shoulder or knee. Common causes of foot and ankle issues include:
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendonitis
- Corns and calluses
- Stress fracture
- Broken bones
How will my podiatrist diagnose my foot and ankle symptoms?
Your foot doctor will take a comprehensive look at the makeup of your foot and ankle using various diagnostic tools. They will use a physical examination to ensure they examine the physical makeup and outside abnormalities of your foot. They may also suggest an x-ray or MRI to further investigate your symptoms and look at your bones or connective tissues. In addition to physically examining the area of your pain, your podiatrist will take a detailed medical, family, and lifestyle history to use in their diagnosis.
Foot and Ankle Pain Treatments in Butte and Bozeman, MT
Treating your foot or ankle issue will depend greatly on the type of condition your podiatrist diagnoses and its severity. Some patients may benefit from simple at-home care while other, more advanced conditions may require a surgical procedure. This makes consulting with your foot doctor a crucial part of finding the best, most effective treatment for you.
For more information on foot and ankle pain, please contact Dr. Dallin Greene and Dr. Nathan Judd at Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute with locations in Butte and Bozeman, MT. Call (406) 782-2278 to schedule your appointment at either office today!
What is Sesamoiditis?
Sesamoids are small bones that are only connected to tendons or surrounded in muscle. This only appears in a few places in the body, one of which is the foot. Two very tiny sesamoids are found in the underside of the foot near the big toe. One is on the outer side of the foot and the other bone is close to the middle of the foot. This structure provides a smooth surface for the tendons to slide over, which helps the tendons move muscles. They help with weight bearing and also help to elevate the bones of the big toe. So now that you know what sesamoids are, you might be wondering what sesamoiditis is and what its symptoms are.
Just like any other bone, sesamoids can unfortunately fracture. The tendons surrounding the sesamoids may also become irritated or inflamed and this is what sesamoiditis is. Sesamoiditis is also a form of tendonitis and is a common condition among ballerinas, runners, and baseball catchers due to the pressure that is constantly placed on their feet.
Symptoms of Sesamoiditis
Symptoms of Sesamoiditis may include:
- Pain under the big toe or ball of the foot
- Swelling and/or bruising
- Difficulty in bending and straightening the big toe
- Resting and stopping any activity that could be causing pain and inflammation
- Anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen and aspirin only after consulting your physician
- Icing the sole of the foot
- Wearing soft-soled and low-heeled shoes
- Cushioning inserts in the shoes
If symptoms persist after treatments, you may need to wear a removable brace for 4-6 weeks to help the bones heal. Call your podiatrist today to ask any questions about sesamoiditis and get on your way to pain-free feet once again!