A Step Ahead - Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists Blog

Posts for tag: Ankle Issues

By Gary N. Friedlander DPM, FACFAS and Jay C. Larson DPM
January 31, 2019
Category: Foot Problems

When asked what the most stable joint is in the leg, most would not respond with the “the ankle joint.” However, this small joint made up of only three bones coming together is extremely stable and can even support up to five times our body weight! Yet, in the United States, the number of ankle sprain injuries per year is in the hundreds of thousands. With as little as a 1 millimeter displacement of the bones, the stability of this joint may drop by 42 percent! This drastically decreases our ability to use this joint to its full-motion capabilities and potentially results in progressive damage and abnormal gait patterns. How do we protect this extremely important joint?

Proper Shoes:

While shoes may be an important fashion statement, they should also serve in protecting your foot and ankle. Finding the right pair of shoes for your daily or athletic needs can prove very challenging. Keeping the 3 rules of stability in mind can help narrow down your choices in finding the best shoe! 

Shoes should only:

■ Bend where the toes bend

■ Have a stiff back and sole 

■ Only slightly twist when you hold the shoe at the heel and at the toes

 

Stretching:

Stretching is critical to ensure muscle strength and proper alignment and functionality of our extremities. Use it or lose it!

■ Try stretching out your gastrocnemius-soleus complex. Do each of these stretches for at least 60 seconds a few times a day.

These two muscles are incredibly important, because the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles connect and become your achilles tendon; a major component of both ankle and foot integrity.  To see more stretches visit our At Home Video page here or our YouTube page here

Injuries:

Ankle injuries are common and are one of the most common problems addressed by podiatrist.  If you experience an ankle injury we recommend P.R.I.C.E. :

Protection: boot or ankle brace with limited weight bearing

Rest: Decreased activity and stress on the ankle

Ice: cold therapy helps reduce swelling and pain

Compression: Ace bandage, compression sleeve, or compression stockings help reduce swelling and decreases healing time

Elevation: Reduces pooling of fluid in the injured ankle. Reduced swelling and pain

If you experience an ankle injury or have recurrent ankle pain and/or swelling consider making an appoitment with Dr. Gary N. Friedlander and Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specilaists.  It is much better to properly evaluate and treat an ankle injury to reduce recurrence and help prevent further damage.

By Gary N. Friedlander DPM, FACFAS and Jay C. Larson DPM
August 24, 2015
Category: Foot Problems

We are on our feet everyday. Whether it is going to work, exercising, or spending time with the family it is almost impossible to avoid using our feet. With our feet being so active in our everyday lives, injuries and diseases may be unavoidable. One injury that may cause issues with your feet is a painful condition called tarsal tunnel syndrome. This condition may prevent you from doing the unavoidable everyday tasks we are required to accomplish.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, in your ankle, is similar to carpal tunnel syndrome in your wrist. Both conditions symptoms are caused by compression of a nerve that runs through a small space.  In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the nerve is located on the inside of you ankle.

What causes tarsal tunnel?

  • Inflammation – increased swelling in the tarsal tunnel of your ankle may compress the nerve. Inflammation can occur from an ankle sprain, or systemic disease.

  • Foot Structure – Some foot structures, like flat feet may stress the inside of the ankle. This stress can irritate the nerve causing the symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome.

  • Abnormal structure – ganglionic cysts or even a swollen tendon are all space occupying structures that may cause irritation on the nerve.

What will tarsal tunnel feel like?

  • Burning

  • Tingling

  • Shooting

  • Numbness

Treating tarsal tunnel syndrome depends on the cause of the nerve compression. Your podiatrist will examine the foot and determine the cause in order to effectively treat this condition. Common treatments include rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medication. This will help reduce the swelling and help relieve the painful symptoms. Other treatments such as physical therapy or injections may be utilized to reduce symptoms to allow time for the nerve to heal. Once the cause is identified, treatments such as foot orthotics, supportive shoes or bracing may be recommended. After conservative treatment has been exhausted, surgery may be indicated. Your podiatrist will determine if surgery is needed.

Our feet are very important to us and we use them everyday. If you notice signs and symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome or any changes in their foot health, please consider making an appointment with Dr. Gary N. Friedlander or Dr. Jay C. Larson at Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.



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