The orthopaedic physicians at MedStar Health know that comprehensive care is the best way to treat the entire range of foot and ankle injuries and disorders. That’s why our teams integrate foot and ankle specialists and therapists, all dedicated to eliminating the pain and limitations such disorders can cause. And since we believe in compassionate, focused care, we emphasize minimally invasive and arthroscopic procedures so our patients have options for faster recovery, reduced risk of infection, and quicker return to full function.
From diagnosis to treatment to rehabilitation and therapy, MedStar Heath orthopaedic specialists are with you each step of the way, providing the professional and personalized care you deserve.
At the Centers for Orthopaedics, we treat a variety of foot and ankle injuries, including:
Every day, our feet and ankles bear the brunt of pressure that comes from supporting our full body weight. The incredible demand we put on them is often more than they can endure. But, the orthopaedic specialists at MedStar health know that even if you are suffering pain or discomfort in your feet or ankles, you don’t need to live with it.
Our foot and ankle physicians are experienced treating the following conditions:
An ankle sprain tears the outer supportive ligaments of the ankle and can range from minor to so severe that the ligaments are torn completely, resulting in the ankle feeling loose. If a person frequently sprains an ankle, the ankle ligaments may be weakened to the point that a chronic instability results in frequent ankle sprains.
This in turn can lead to other ankle problems, including bruised cartilage between the heel and the shin or bone spurs around the ankle. Eventually, these problems can lead to arthritis.
Arthritis is an inflammation of the tissues that line your joints. This inflammation can cause pain, swelling, and joint damage.
If left untreated, the nagging pain from foot and ankle arthritis can grow worse, eventually becoming so excruciating that you can no longer walk even short distances. Severe arthritis can restrict your mobility and limit your quality of life; however, with proper treatment, you can slow the development of arthritis and lead a more productive life. Each person's arthritis is different, so your physician will discuss treatment options best suited for you. Treatment can range from conservative methods, such as anti-inflammatory medications, braces, orthotics or physical therapy, to arthroscopic or joint replacement surgery.
A bunion is an inflamed, bony bump that forms at the base of the big toe where it joins with the foot. A bunion results from the big toe pushing against the neighboring toe, forcing the joint of the big toe to swell and bulge out. This common deformity can be caused by wearing shoes that are excessively tight or can develop as a result of a genetic structural defect or a medical condition, such as arthritis. Bunions tend to slowly worsen over time, and, if they become too severe, can hamper the ability to walk, increasing the risk of developing arthritis and/or bursitis.
Bunion care can range from nonsurgical methods, such as wearing roomier shoes and using protective pads to cushion the painful area, to surgical methods employed to realign bone, ligaments, tendons, and nerves so the big toe can be brought back to its correct position.
The ankle is made up of three bones, and the foot comprises 26 bones. Fractures can occur in any of these bones and are usually due to trauma such as a fall, blow, or severe twist. Symptoms can include:
- Immediate and severe pain
- Bruising and tenderness
- Decreased range of motion
- Difficulty walking or putting weight on the injured foot/ankle
- Lump or visible deformity
Because a severe sprain can often mask the symptoms of a fracture, every injury to the foot and ankle should be examined by a physician.
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
The tarsal tunnel is a space where leg nerve (tibial nerve) travels down to the ankle. Many other structures are found here, as well, including tendons, veins, and arteries, leaving little room for expansion.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome occurs when the tunnel swells, compressing the tibial nerve and causing pain, burning, and tingling occur along the inside of the ankle, heel, arch, and sole of the foot. Symptoms tend to increase as the day progresses and are usually worsened with increased activity, such as walking or exercise. Prolonged standing in one place may also be an aggravating factor.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome care may include conservative treatments such as rest, elevation, massage, anti-inflammatory medications, steroid injections, arch supports (orthotics), and/or better-fitting shoes. If conservative treatment does not provide results, your physician may suggest surgery during which an incision made in the ligament, located below the inside of the ankle, allowing room for the nerve to expand. If a cyst is impinging on the nerve, it can be removed.