While the feet can withstand significant stress and pressure every day, their intricate structure makes them more vulnerable to various injuries. If you experience pain, swelling, and difficulty walking, these could be indicators of more severe foot problems. The podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Surgeons of New York specialize in diagnosing and treating all types of foot problems. Our foot doctor in New York would like to discuss potential causes of foot pain and how you can tell if it’s serious.
Is My Foot Pain Serious?
Occasional pains and aches in your feet are not uncommon, especially if you spend lots of time on your feet. The feet contain a significant percentage of the bones in your entire body, so many structures can sustain damage. Foot pain can be attributed to some of the following conditions:
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Stress Fracture
Foot pain tends to resolve itself over time with rest and anti-inflammatory medications. However, if you are enduring severe foot pain, ignoring it could lead to long-term issues. Some signs that you’re dealing with severe foot pain include:
- Trauma to the foot.
- Pain in both feet.
- Swelling, warmth, and redness in your foot.
- Visible foot deformity.
- Inability to bear weight.
If you experience any of the previously mentioned symptoms or excruciating pain in your foot, seeking treatment from Foot and Ankle Surgeons of New York, foot doctor in New York should be your next step. Managing your foot pain on your own can be a challenge, especially if you can’t walk normally or enjoy your usual activities. Our team will examine your symptoms to determine the cause of your serious foot pain and help you find relief.
Here at Foot and Ankle Surgeons of New York, foot doctor in New York we utilize the latest podiatric techniques to manage all causes of foot pain that plague our patients. To learn more about signs of severe foot pain, be sure to contact our team today!
Arthritis – What is it?
Arthritis is inflammation of one or more of your joints. It can cause pain and stiffness in any joint in the body, and is common in the small joints of the foot and ankle. Arthritis can be found any of the several joints. Most common form of foot and ankle arthritis is osteoarthritis where the cartilage in a joint gradually wears away. As the cartilage is damaged, the protective space between the bones decreases and leads to “bone rubbing on bone” and pain, swelling and difficulty walking that worsens over time.
An injury may lead to osteoarthritis, although it may take months or years after the injury for the condition to develop. For example, osteoarthritis in the big toe is often caused by kicking or jamming the toe, or by dropping something on the toe. Osteoarthritis in the midfoot is often caused by dropping something on it, or by a sprain or fracture. In the ankle, osteoarthritis is usually caused by a fracture and occasionally by a severe sprain.
Sometimes osteoarthritis develops as a result of abnormal foot mechanics such as flat feet or high arches. A flat foot causes less stability, resulting in excessive strain on the joints, which can cause arthritis. On the other hand, a high arch is rigid and lacks mobility, causing a jamming of joints that creates an increased risk of arthritis.
Often, arthritis can be diagnosed by a foot doctor in New York from a through history and physical exam. X-rays and laboratory tests often can confirm the type and extent of the arthritis. Other tests such as a computed tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) may be used to evaluate the condition. For foot and ankle arthritis, weight-bearing radiographs–x-rays taken while standing– are important in diagnosing the severity of arthritis and any joint deformity associated with it.
There is no cure for arthritis but there are a number of treatments that may help relieve the pain and disability it causes. Nonsurgical treatment includes assistive devices such as AFO braces and foot orthoses, ant-inflammatory medications and injections, as well as physical therapy.
Surgical treatment depends on the specific joint involved and the extend of the condition. Arthroscopic procedures to remove loose cartilage, inflamed synovial tissue, and bone spurs may be helpful in the early stages of the disease. Advanced arthritis or that involves a deformity often requires arthrodesis or fusion of the involved joint(s). The goal of the procedure is to reduce pain by eliminating motion in the arthritic joint. Joint replacement surgery may be of help in some instances, but has a limited role in foot and ankle arthritic conditions.
Living with a painful foot injury or disease can be incredibly challenging. You may be considering surgery to help you find relief, but you also may not be sure that surgery is necessary or right for your condition. At Foot and Ankle Surgeons of New York, foot doctor in New York, can evaluate your situation and help you determine if surgery is the best course of action.
Do I Need Foot Surgery?
If the treatments you are receiving are not providing you with significant relief, you should consider surgery. Our foot doctor in New York, will usually suggest non-surgical treatment at first, but some conditions cannot be improved with conservative methods. Here are some more instances where surgery might be necessary:
- Deformity – A deformity of the foot, such as a bunion, can leave you in constant pain and negatively impact your quality of life. If you can’t walk a short distance without pain, or your bunion causes you to sit out everyday activities, you may want to get it removed. Our podiatrist in NYC has performed this surgery successfully for numerous patients.
- Ruptured or Torn Tendons – In some cases, a slightly torn tendon can heal itself. In the case of more severe tears or ruptures, surgery may be necessary. When a tendon becomes torn or ruptured, it is no longer connecting the muscle to bone. This can cause your foot and ankle to stop functioning.
- Arthritis – Unfortunately, arthritis is a painful condition that is difficult to treat. There is not a lot that you can do about this condition. If you’re dealing with arthritis pain that doesn’t let up, surgery may be necessary.
- Fracture – Casting can effectively treat some foot fractures, but some require an operation to restore complete function. In a displaced fracture, a bone separates and breaks into two pieces. Patients with displaced fractures often benefit from surgery to realign the bones. This procedure can stabilize the fracture and reduce problems in the future.
Contact Our Podiatrist in NYC
Our foot doctor in New York is extensively trained in the diagnosis and surgical treatment of foot conditions. Choosing to undergo surgery can be difficult, but you can be confident that you are in great hands with our team at Foot and Ankle Surgeons of New York! Contact us today to schedule an appointment!