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McDowell Podiatry
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Foot Traumas and Fractures

Foot X-ray

When the sun is directly shining above you, it is at its zenith—the most powerful state. When you sustain foot traumas and fractures, your pain is at its zenith—the pinnacle of discomfort. At the McDowell Podiatry Group, we treat a lot of foot and ankle trauma, with conservative methods or with surgery. Following are explanations behind some common injuries in your lower limbs.

Top Types of Foot Fractures

Two types of fractures go through the bone. Stable fractures don’t shift the bone alignment, but displaced fractures, on the other hand, misalign the bone when it buckles from too much stress and impact. These injuries often occur when something heavy is dropped on the foot. It could happen during something as simple as moving furniture to a new apartment or house.

Stress fractures only create a crack on the bone’s surface. The culprits? Rapid increases in running or walking distances, bad form while training, or a dramatic change in training surfaces.

  • Ankle Fracture – Also known as a broken ankle, this injury can occur in one, two, or all three of the bones that make up the ankle joint. Broken ankles are seen in a variety of age groups. They happen with a twist, rotation, or roll in the ankle. They can also occur if you trip on something or if you were in a car crash.
  • Heel Fracture – The heel bone is sometimes fractured during a car crash or a fall from a high distance—from a ladder or your trampoline onto the hard pavement, for example. This injury can be very debilitating and can even hurt your spine and your hips, too.
  • Talus Fracture – This acute injury involves the bone that sits above the heel bone. The talus helps you walk on uneven surfaces and helps displace weight and pressure for the ankle joint.
  • Fractured Toes – Weirdly enough, a broken bone in your toe will hurt, but might not keep you from walking. It usually heals without requiring surgery, too.  
  • Stress Fractures in the Foot – Overuse usually creates a stress fracture. In high-impact sports, the muscles get tired and can’t absorb the repeated shock. They transfer the pounding to the bones instead, which develop tiny cracks.

Painful Foot Traumas

  • Achilles Tendon Rupture – The Achilles tendon runs along the back of your leg and connects your calf muscle to your heel. As the largest tendon in the body, it can handle a lot of stress from running and other high-impact exercises. When it ruptures, though, the tendon tears and separates.
  • Sprained Ankle – When a ligament in your ankle is pushed beyond its limit, the fibers might stretch, tear, or move into an abnormal position. This is a very common injury that can happen during sports, or just from stepping on an uneven surface, like a hole in the ground.
  • Turf Toe – This is a sprain in the big toe joint that happens when it’s hyper extended, usually from pushing off into a sprint. It occurs at the base joint where the foot and first big toe bone connect.

Avoid Powerful Pain: Get Help to Heal

Most foot traumas and fractures are accompanied by immediate pain, swelling, and bruising. Usually, you can’t put any weight on the foot. For some fractures, like those on your heel bone, you might see a deformity from the break. Broken toes may allow you to walk, but you’ll still feel the pain.

Ice the affected area immediately after experiencing a break, fracture, or high-impact trauma. The ice will help with the swelling and pain. Lie down, elevate your leg, and try to keep yourself calm while someone calls for help. With broken toes, you should see a doctor if you have continued pain and swelling and if your condition gets worse. Stress fractures will also require a doctor’s visit because continued use could mean a full break.

Don’t let the pain reach its pinnacle. Visit the McDowell Podiatry Group in Carmichael, CA, to find ways to prevent and treat your foot traumas and fractures. You can make an appointment by calling (916) 961-3434. You can also get more advice by following our Facebook and Google+ pages.

Dr. Brian McDowell
Dr. Brian McDowell, board-certified podiatrist, provides cutting-edge foot and ankle care in Carmichael, CA.