Have you ever heard of a Lisfranc joint or ligament? They are located in the middle of your foot at the point where your metatarsal bones meet up with the bones in the arch of your foot. At New England Foot & Ankle Specialists, patients with an injury to this area report difficulty bearing weight on the foot as well as pain, swelling, blistering and bruising to the arch of the foot.
Tricky to Diagnose
The symptoms of a Lisfranc injury can mimic those of ankle sprain and so diagnosis can be challenging. Our podiatrists: Dr. George A. Abboud, Dr. Brian D. Tedesco, Dr. Carl Conui, or Dr. Kimberly Thurmond will want a detailed medical history from you if you have midfoot symptoms and will conduct a complete examination of your foot. Imaging studies, including x-rays may also be utilized to confirm the diagnosis and in some cases an examination while the patient is under anesthesia may also be ordered.
Lisfranc injuries fall into three categories: fractures, sprains and dislocations. Once the podiatrist determines the exact nature of your Lisfranc injury and its severity, the proper treatment plan can be determined. Options for treatment may include:
Icing and elevation—keeping the leg at or a little above hip level and applying ice for 20 minutes every hour to help reduce swelling
Immobilizing the foot—patients often need to avoid putting weight on the foot and therefore it may be placed in a cast and crutches may be needed
Medication—the foot doctor may prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (Ibuprofen) to help relieve inflammation and pain
Physical therapy—once the initial symptoms have gone away, physical therapy may be recommended to strengthen the muscles and ligaments surrounding the Lisfranc joint
Surgery—in some cases surgery may be necessary to repair a Lisfranc injury
Prompt treatment of a Lisfranc injury is important in order to prevent serious disability. If you have recently been injured or are just noticing pain and swelling in the middle of your foot, make an appointment at our Reading office as soon as possible.