Foot and ankle discomfort can stem from an immediate injury, like a fall that leads to a break or sprain in your ankle. Often, the pain in your foot and ankle arises from the slow wear and tear of joint cartilage or connective tissues due to overuse or the natural aging process. Even minor stresses on your ankle and foot can cause significant discomfort and disability.
The causes of foot and ankle pain include:
● Ankle Sprains: Typically, injuries to tendons and ligaments occur from twisting your ankle. Strains, which affect the attachments of muscle to bone or bone-to-bone, are the usual culprits, rather than the muscles themselves.
● Plantar Fasciitis: The plantar fascia is a band of tough, fibrous tissue that supports your foot's arch. Damage or swelling of this tissue can lead to heel pain, making walking a discomforting task.
● Achilles Tendon Injuries: The Achilles tendon located at the back of your lower leg is prone to sports injuries, including tears or ruptures. Persistent irritation of the Achilles tendon can lead to inflammation, known as Achilles tendinitis.
● Fractures: Your ankles and feet are made up of numerous bones — 26 in a single foot. Ankle fractures are commonly seen in sports injuries, whereas crush injuries often impact the feet. Overuse could also lead to stress fractures, which are minuscule cracks in bones. This might occur from frequent running on hard surfaces or from stepping down too forcefully on stairs or a hard floor.
How are foot and ankle pain treated?
The first step in treating foot and ankle pain is the same as elsewhere in the body.
Dr. Abraham takes a full history and then performs a comprehensive exam to determine which tissues are injured. Often, more than one site of injury is present.
The typical approach to treating immediate foot and ankle pain involves a combination of relative rest, the application of cold or heat for relief, regular movement of the foot and ankle, gradual exercises as per tolerance, necessary medication for pain management, the use of crutches or a brace if needed, and most importantly, swift initiation of physical therapy, usually within a day or two after your consultation with Dr. Abraham.
Physical therapy often plays a crucial role in recovering from foot and ankle pain. Dr. Abraham can guide you to a local therapist who possesses the exact set of skills you need for the best recovery.
Please note that Dr. Abraham does not use steroid injections, as they have not been found to be beneficial in this context.
Dr. Abraham specializes in employing Prolotherapy as a therapeutic measure to address foot and ankle pain.
Prolotherapy is a non-surgical, safe technique aimed at jump-starting your body's natural healing mechanisms. Dr. Abraham introduces a solution of dextrose or glucose, mixed with a local anesthetic and sterile water, into the affected tissues in your body.
Dr. Abraham employs two variations of prolotherapy:
Traditional Prolotherapy: The injections in this type of prolotherapy are designed to penetrate deep into your tissues. The injected solution attracts healing cells to the site of the injection, where they multiply to form new tissues. This process typically spans about six weeks and may need to be repeated once or twice for maximum effectiveness.
Perineural Injection Therapy (PIT): PIT operates in a similar manner to traditional prolotherapy. However, Dr. Abraham aims these injections at nerves close to the skin's surface. PIT works to 'turn off' pain nerves, reducing and alleviating the intensity of your chronic pain, leading to the quick commencement of the regeneration of damaged structures.
When considering an appointment as a new patient, please call to speak directly with Dr. Abraham.