Posts for tag: sprains
How to Treat Sprained Ankles
Most minor sprains can be properly managed through simple at-home treatment and care. Conservative treatment is typically the first line of defense against minor ankle and foot problems, including minor sprains. While more moderate to severe sprains will require more aggressive attention and treatment options, the RICE method is ideal for most ankle sprains. Here’s what RICE stands for:
No matter the severity of your sprain, your podiatrist will be the first to tell you to stay off the ankle and to rest as much as possible to give the ankle time to heal. If the sprain is more moderate or severe, your podiatrist may recommend wearing a protective boot or using crutches to help stabilize the foot and ankle and take pressure off the ankle while standing or walking.
Especially for the first 72 hours after an ankle injury, it’s a good idea to use ice as much as possible to reduce swelling and pain. Wrap an ice pack in a towel and apply to the ankle for up to 20 minutes at a time. You can continue to do this every few hours throughout the day.
Your podiatrist can also show you the proper way to wrap and bandage your ankle, which not only promotes proper circulation and blood flow to the area to aid in healing but also can provide additional support and stabilization for the ankle. It’s important to know how to properly wrap your ankle to make sure it’s providing the very best support and your podiatrist can easily show you how.
Whenever you at resting (which should be most of the day!), it’s a good idea to prop your injured ankle up above your heart to reduce inflammation and bruising. You should elevate your ankle for at least a couple of hours each day!
If you are in pain, over-the-counter NSAID pain relievers can be great for reducing pain, swelling, and inflammation. For more severe sprains, your podiatrist may prescribe something stronger. Patients with more moderate-to-severe sprains may require physical therapy and rehabilitation to help rebuild and strengthen the ligaments, tendons, and muscles of the ankle.
Knowing you have a proper treatment plan in place can provide you with the peace of mind you need to know that your ankle will heal properly. Don’t ignore any foot or ankle injuries. Turn to your podiatrist right away for sprained ankles, or any other problems you may be facing.
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.