Fracturing a bone in your foot or lower leg is a painful experience that can have a serious impact on your mobility. If you think you've sustained a fracture, you should contact board-certified foot and ankle surgeon Michael Petrocelli, DPM, FACFAS, CWSP, of Collier Podiatry in Naples, Florida. He can assess the injury and provide the treatment you need for a fast, complete recovery. For expert care for foot and ankle fractures, call Collier Podiatry today.
A fracture is a crack or break in one of your bones. There are various ways in which bones can fracture. Some that are likely to affect your feet and ankles include:
Sometimes bones break cleanly without damaging the soft tissues surrounding them. These are simple fractures. The cleanest fractures are those where the ends of the fractured bone remain in line, which makes treatment significantly easier.
A compound fracture is one where the fractured bones tear through the flesh, or a wound is so deep in the muscles that you can see the fractured bones. These fractures can be both distressing and vulnerable to infection.
Comminuted fractures are those where the bones break into multiple pieces. This is the type of fracture you might get in an auto accident that crushes your feet, or when something heavy falls on or rolls over your feet.
Unlike the other types of fractures, stress fractures take time to develop. Tiny cracks in the bone build up over time until the bone weakens and causes chronic pain. Regularly running on hard surfaces or overexerting yourself are common causes of stress fractures.
Acute fractures in your feet and ankles typically cause severe pain, along with other symptoms such as:
As stress fractures come on more slowly, the symptoms are somewhat different. The pain caused by stress fractures tends to worsen when you're on your feet but generally eases if you're at rest. Your foot might be tender but probably won't have bruising and blistering.
The symptoms of an ankle sprain can be similar to those of a fractured ankle. Unless you can see the broken bone or an obvious abnormality in your foot or ankle, it's hard to be sure whether there's a fracture or not.
It's important, therefore, to visit Dr. Petrocelli for an accurate diagnosis and assessment of your injury. Collier Podiatry has state-of-the-art digital X-ray facilities on-site for your convenience.
Once Dr. Petrocelli sees your X-rays, he can advise you on the most appropriate form of treatment. Most fractures require medication to relieve the pain they cause.
A simple, clean break requires splinting to keep the bones aligned while they heal. A clean break where the bones are slightly out of line needs expert manipulation to realign the bones before splinting or casting.
More severe or complex fractures might require surgery to repair the bones. Dr. Petrocelli excels in performing foot and ankle reconstructive surgery, using minimally invasive techniques where possible.
Injuries like fractures can also benefit from regenerative medicine therapies like stem cell injections to promote faster tissue healing.
For more information on fracture care, call Collier Podiatry today.