Breaking a bone, no matter where its location on the body, is a traumatizing experience. However, telling the difference between an ankle or foot fracture and a sprain without x-rays or MRIs can prove to be tricky. Luckily, your Sparta, NJ podiatrist Dr. Philip Caswell can help diagnose and treat your foot pain to get you back on your feet for good.
Signs and Symptoms of a Foot or Ankle Fracture
A fracture is a break in the bone. A sprain occurs when the connective tissues around the bone become inflamed. Telling the difference between a fracture and a sprain may be difficult in some situations. However, the pain from a fracture is usually concentrated over the bone in your ankle or foot. Since they affect the soft tissues, sprains hurt in the areas of the soft tissues around the bone. Additionally, a good rule of thumb is that if you cannot put any weight or walk on your foot, you probably have a fracture. If you have visual abnormalities in the ankle or foot, seek immediate medical care.
In the case of an injury, listen to your body. If you cannot walk, stay off of your foot or you could cause further injury. If you are having trouble determining whether your foot or ankle is fractured or sprained, rest, ice, compress, and stabilize your foot and ankle for two to four days. If you have not seen any change, are still in severe pain, or notice significant bruising, you should see your podiatrist as soon as possible. Untreated fractures come with the risk of healing incorrectly and creating lasting problems.
Foot and Ankle Fracture Treatments in Sparta, NJ
Treatment for foot and ankle fractures varies depending on the patient and the severity of the fracture. A physical examination allows your doctor to gather the information needed to access the situation and diagnose your problem. Imaging techniques like x-rays or MRIs give your doctor visual evidence of a fracture. If necessary, your doctor will set the bones to realign them properly. Some cases of minor fractures do not require a cast or splint. However, more severe fractures require the stabilization of a non-walking or walking cast or splint. Your doctor can help you determine which treatment option is best for you.
For more information on foot or ankle injuries and their treatments, please contact Dr. Philip Caswell at Family Foot & Ankle Care in Sparta, NJ. Call 973-300-9151 to schedule your appointment for a foot and ankle examination with Dr. Caswell today!