Posts for: July, 2016
Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia treats a variety of foot and ankle problems due to injury, stress, arthritis and congenital malformations. Their podiatrists want to educate patients on common Stafford and Lake Ridge, VA ankle injuries and what they do to intervene, stabilize and heal these problems and also on how to prevent them.
Stafford and Lake Ridge Ankle Injuries
According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, people of all ages injure their lower extremities. Ordinary tripping and falling on uneven or icy surfaces puts individuals at risk for sprains, fractures and strains as do sports. Football, volleyball and basketball cause problems related to jumping and twisting, while running, dancing and tennis commonly lead to repetitive stress fractures, shin splints, tendontitis and other connective tissue problems.
Symptoms and Diagnostics
At Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of Northern Virginia, patients with sprains, strains or fractures show symptoms of:
- struggling with bearing weight and walking on the affected limbs
Your podiatrist examines the areas, taking x-rays, or other imaging such as ultrasound exam or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). These tests reveal fractures and soft tissue injuries, helping the podiatrist determine the treatments.
Treatment of Ankle Problems
Immediate care for an ankle injury always includes Rest, Ice, Compression (with an elastic supportive bandage) and Elevation. Easily remembered with the initials R.I.C.E., this first aid protocol renders comfort and stability to the ankle until the patient sees Dr. Stabile or one of his associate podiatrists.
Depending on examination and imaging, the doctor may recommend:
- other stabilization
- soft boot
- surgery (for unstable fractures where bone ends are separated)
- Ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain
Prevention of Ankle Injuries
Athletes, whether professional or amateur, must wear good fitting and supporting footwear, taking care to stretch before and after hard exertion. Be sure to wear shoes that make sense for what you are doing. For instance, tennis players should wear tennis shoes, and runners should wear running sneakers.
Avoid shoes with little support for the arches and ankles, and pick footwear with comfortable toe boxes. People with abnormal motion patterns in their feet risk injury and sometimes benefit from custom-made shoe inserts or orthotics.
What is Wrong with My Ankle?
If you have persistent pain and swelling, don't wait. Contact Dr. Stabile's office staff and arrange an appointment. This board-certified podiatric surgeon will pinpoint the problem and get you the treatment you need for best mobility and freedom from pain. Call (703) 491-9500 in Lake Ridge, or phone (540) 720-0700 in Stafford.
Your feet serve you well, and they are more complex than you may think. They are also prone to infections, particularly if you have a suppressed immune system, suffer from peripheral vascular disease (PVD), are diabetic or have sustained an injury. However, anyone can get one of several common foot and nail infections.
Dr. Douglas Stabile and his associate podiatrists at Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of North Virginia, PC provide treatment for a wide array of foot and ankle conditions of the bone, soft tissue, and skin. These Stafford podiatrists want each and every one of their patients to have the healthiest and best functioning feet possible. They want you to know about common foot infections.
Cellulitis of the foot or ankle exhibits areas of red, tender, warm skin. Staph and strep bacteria are the most common infective agents, often gaining access through an ingrown toenail or trauma to the foot.
Athlete's Foot is a fungal infection of the skin and toenails. Tinea pedis is the cause, and because it thrives in damp, dark shoes and wet areas such as swimming pool decks and shower stalls it's hard to keep free of Athlete's Foot and fungal toenails. Characterized by red, cracked itchy skin, especially between the toes, or by yellowed, darkened, thick toenails, fungal infections are treated with local anti-fungal creams and other interventions.
Pain, fever, chills and localized redness and swelling characterize osteomyelitis, an infection of the bone in the foot or other areas of the body such as the long bone of the leg. The American Podiatric Medical Association states that this common infection often begins elsewhere and travels to the foot. Injury, diabetes, PVD and long-term use of catheters and IV lines set the stage for osteomyelitis. Injury, such as a dog bite, or implantation of a prosthetic joint and related hardware, are other common causes. Treatment includes debridement of diseased tissue and antibiotics.
Prevention of Foot Infections
Besides annual foot exams (and as needed check-ups for diabetic patients), Dr. Stabile advises common sense preventive measures to avoid foot infections:
- wearing well-fitting, well-supporting shoes with wide toe boxes
- changing socks every day
- washing feet daily and drying thoroughly, especially between the toes
- exercise, including stretching, as needed
- wearing shower sandals near swimming pools and in locker rooms
Come to See Us
The Institute for Preventive Foot Health rightly states that your feet are the main supports and means of day to day mobility. Stafford podiatrist Dr. Stabile and his friendly staff at Associated Foot & Ankle Centers of North Virginia, PC provide a wide array of ways to keep your feet healthy and you pain-free and moving. Call the office today at 540-720-0700 if you have a question or concern or need to schedule a regular check-up.