Common Sports Injuries And How Your Podiatrist Can Help
Sooner or later, most athletes experience some type of foot or ankle injury. In many cases, the injuries are mild and heal with a little rest, but sometimes, pain and limited mobility can be a problem weeks after an injury. Chattanooga, TN, podiatrists, Dr. Dennis Bizzoco and Dr. Brian Burgan, share information on common sports injuries and explain how foot doctors treat them.
Achilles tendon injuries
Tendon injuries are common if you participate in an activity that involves running or jumping. Achilles tendinitis occurs when the long tendon that connects your heel to your calf muscles becomes painfully inflamed. If you ignore the problem and don't stay off your feet, you may eventually develop Achilles tendinosis. This condition causes tiny tears in the tendon. Achilles tendon ruptures develop when the tendon tears either partially or completely. Ultrasound therapy, physical therapy, cushioned heel cups, boots, cortisone injections and shockwave therapy are often very effective in decreasing pain and promoting healing if you have a tendon injury. If your tendon is ruptured or other treatments don't help, you may benefit from surgery.
Sprains are generally minor injuries, but that doesn't mean that they aren't painful. Although most sprains improve with rest, it's important to schedule an appointment with Dr. Bizzoco or Dr. Burgan at their Chattanooga office if you're still in pain several weeks after your injury. Taking the pressure off the ankle with a boot and participating in physical therapy can help you recover, but you may require surgery if your ankle has become unstable.
Retrocalcaneal bursitis may be the source of your heel pain. Although the problem can be confused with Achilles tendinitis, the inflammation actually occurs in the bursa, a soft sac that helps your Achilles tendon move over the heel bone. Corticosteroid injections, physical therapy or ultrasound therapy are often helpful.
Playing a sport that involves jumping increases your risk of fractures. You can't always tell if you've fractured your foot by the level of pain you experience. If you have difficulty walking or notice that your foot is very swollen or deformed, you may have a fracture. Casts, boots and surgery, in some cases, will help your foot heel.
Athletes are also susceptible to stress fractures, a type of fracture that develops slowly and may occur if you train too hard or too long. These small cracks in your bone are usually treated with shoe inserts or boots that take the pressure off your foot while it heals.
Don't ignore sports injuries. Call Chattanooga, TN, podiatrists Dr. Bizzoco and Dr. Burgan (423) 855-0728 to schedule an appointment if you're suffering from foot or ankle pain.