We spend a good majority of time on our feet, so dealing with foot and ankle pain could be difficult, especially as upright humans. Even most people spend 75,000 miles on their feet by the time they reach the age of 50. As the feet and ankles support the weight and bear the impact of the entire weight of the body, they are easily injured. The feet and ankles are complicated musculoskeletal structures. So, twisting, spraining, fracturing, and even breaking the foot or ankle are common injuries that could be caused by strenuous athletic activities, a trip or misstep, or even ill-fitting or high-heeled shoes.
Although, foot and ankle injuries are common for everyone athletes are more inclined to hurt in these areas. High-impact running and jumping can strike the relatively unstable ankle joints and delicate metatarsals of the foot, making these areas more susceptible to injury. Moreover, once any of the ligaments and tendons in the area are damaged, they become loose and prone to injury in the future.
Ankle Surgery Doctor In Houston
Fortunately, there are several foot and ankle treatments available. These treatments are surgeries and procedures to treat various conditions and injuries affecting the feet and ankles. As the foot and ankle is a complex area containing bones, ligaments, nerves, tendons, and muscles, surprisingly, forming 33 joints. Treating problems with any of these structures can involve ankle, foot, or toe surgery.
But how to know that you need foot or ankle surgery or not? As no one factor ensures surgery is necessary, or not. Because for some people, the pain or injury is completely exhausting whereas, for others, pain manifests itself as an achy joint during the rainy season. Whether you have suffered or suffering from joint pain or any foot or ankle injury, here are few signs for you, that it may be time to book an appointment with an ankle surgery doctor in Houston.
Important Signs that You Need a Foot and Ankle Surgery
- Your foot or ankle pain persists gets worse or recurs over time your joint aches during and after exercise(running, jumping, etc.)
- You have a constant heel pain
- Your pain causes you to limp, making you walk with walking aids(like a cane)
- Medication is not delivering enough relief
- Bunion: an enlargement of the bone and tissue around the joint of the big toe.
- Hammertoe: a contracture of the toe(s), frequently caused by an imbalance in the tendon or joints of the toe
- Bone spur: an overgrowth of the bone as a result of pressure, trauma, or stress of a ligament or tendon
- If you have blisters
- If you have corns
- Neuroma: enlargement of a nerve segment, common;y found between the 3rd and 4th toes
- Your pain that flares up with vigorous activity
- You have a tenderness when pressure is applied to the joint
- You have joint swelling, warmth, and redness
- Your pain and swelling increase in the morning, or after sitting or resting for a long time
- Difficulty in walking due to any of the above mentioned symptoms
One of the major causes of the surgery is ‘Arthritis.’ There are three major types of arthritis that affect the foot and ankle and may warrant surgery. Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and post-traumatic arthritis.
It is a common problem for many people after reaching middle age, but there are still chances to occur in younger people too. In this type of arthritis, the cartilage in the joint gradually wears away. This can result in rubbing one bone with another bone, and it often causes painful osteophytes(bone spurs). Osteoarthritis develops slowly, causing pain and stiffness, making it worsen over time.
2. Rheumatoid Arthritis
The exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis is not known. Though it is not an inherited disease, researchers and doctors believe that some people have genes that make them more susceptible to it. The genes get activated, usually, with some “trigger,” such as infection or environmental factor, and when the body is exposed to this trigger, the immune system begins to produce substances that attack joints.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune cells attack the synovium covering the joint, causing swelling around the area. Then synovium invades and damages the bone and cartilage, as well as the ligaments and tendons, over time. It often causes serious joint deformity and disability.
As the name suggests, post-traumatic arthritis can develop after an injury to the foot or ankle, and in many cases, it does not show up for years after the initial injury. The most common injuries that lead to post-traumatic arthritis are dislocations and fractures; particularly those that damage or break through the joint surface. Similar to osteoarthritis, this also causes the cartilage between the joints to wear away.
If you are suffering from any of the symptoms, then talk to the doctor(specialist) and see that, whether you need foot and ankle surgery or not.