Causes of Stress Fractures to the Foot and Ankle
When the foot or ankle experiences trauma, a fracture may occur. Causes of foot and ankle fractures can vary. In some cases, an obvious impact to the foot or a fall can be behind a fracture. Fractures can also occur because of increased stress on the bone over time. The location of the fracture can often give your podiatrist information on how the fracture occurred.
Pain, especially when bearing weight, is a telltale sign of a fracture. Limping due to this pain is a further sign of a foot or ankle fracture. Other symptoms include inflammation, bruising, deformity, and tenderness. A deformity may occur due to a shift in bone alignment or a joint dislocation near the fracture. While pain is a significant symptom of breakage, a patient who has nerve damage or who has diabetes may not feel this pain. In this instance, your podiatrist will look for additional signs to determine whether a fracture has occurred.
Treatment of Foot and Ankle Fractures in Gastonia, Concord, Charlotte, Albemarle & Salisbury, NC
From this point, treatment can vary patient to patient with the severity of the fracture. Rest is absolutely required for the foot. Fractures vary in healing time, some can be healed with short bursts of rest, and others require prolonged periods of resting paired with crutches. In cases in which the fracture is very serious, surgery may be authorized to install pins supporting the fracture and aiding in healing.
On diagnosis of a stress fracture—immediately cease the activity that caused the fracture and rest! Prevention is always your first step, however, if relief of the symptoms does not occur naturally and within a reasonable time frame, an orthopedic specialist is highly recommended.
If you are experiencing severe pain, cannot walk without limping, have an open wound near the suspected break, or have numbness or tingling in the toes, you should see your podiatrist.