What is Triple Arthrodesis?

Walking with pain is a very frustrating and difficult thing to have to live with. Whether the pain is from arthritis or from other deformity’s in the foot, it can be hard to find a solution to assist you in walking with little or no pain at all. One of the ways that doctors can assist you in getting rid of the pain is with triple arthrodesis. This procedure helps to stabilize the foot and decrease or completely rid your foot of pain as you’re walking. Take a look at what this procedure is and what you can expect from it if you need this surgery.

What is triple arthrodesis?

This procedure is one where three joints in the foot are fused together to offer pain reduction and more stability to the foot itself. It helps to align the foot better than before the procedure in hopes of the pain being reduced to nothing. This procedure has been used for several years in the medical industry and is proven to help those who are having problems walking.

This procedure is good for those dealing with severe arthritis, deformity of the foot, or those who are dealing with severe flatfoot or high arches. However, this is not recommended for those who are not fully grown as they can have deformities form later in life even after the procedure has been done. This is also only after other nonsurgical methods have been tried and have failed in relieving pain.

What to expect

The procedure involved two incisions, one on each side of the foot. The three joints in the foot are prepared and then fused together using hardware to keep them in place. After the hardware is in place and confirmed via x-ray, the surgeon will close everything up and apply large bandages to protect the incisions. They may also decide to numb the nerves in your ankle or knee to help reduce the amount of after procedure pain you will experience.

After the procedure

Once the triple arthrodesis is complete you’ll have a time of recovery. This will involve keeping your foot elevated and weight off of the foot when you’re walking. In most cases, triple arthrodesis procedures are effective and help to reduce the pain or get rid of it completely after the surgery.

You do need to realize that after the procedure your range of motion in your foot will be limited. You’ll still retain up and down motion but side-to-side motion will be limited after it is complete. Most people do not have a problem with this because their pain has been done away with and they can deal with a range of motion deficit.

What is Naviculocuneiform Joint Fusion?

As you age and grow older, there is a tendency for arthritis to settle in to your joints of your body. This can make it difficult to do everyday tasks such as walking, lifting items or using your hands. While there are various treatment options for this problem, some of the areas that arthritis attacks need a little more attention. If you are having problems in the joints of your foot, naviculocuneiform joint fusion may be what you’re needing.

What is Naviculocuneiform Arthrodesis or Joint Fusion?

Basically, this is where the naviculocuneiform joint of your foot has had arthritis settle in and caused the bones of the joint to start rubbing together. The joint itself consists of four different bones and it is in the middle of the foot. When this sets in, it makes it hard to bear weight on the foot, walk like you normally would, and can also cause a problem called drop foot if it has gotten severe. This problem is typically caused by having a trauma to that region of your foot.

What the joint fusion will do is help to relieve the pain that you’re dealing with in that area of the foot. The procedure itself will fuse your joints together with pins and screws to hold the joint in place as it should be. This will help to alleviate the pain and problems that you’re currently having due to the joint cartilage wearing away.

What to Expect

This procedure is an outpatient procedure and you’re generally back home by the end of the day. You’ll be administered general anesthesia and possibly a nerve block in your foot and ankle to help with pain control after the procedure. A small incision is made on the inside of your foot where the doctor can access the joint area. The pins and hardware are then put in place and you’ll be ready to go shortly after you wake up.

You’ll receive a cushioned splint to wear for the following days after surgery. Typically, you’ll spend around two weeks with your foot elevated to help reduce the swelling that can occur after the procedure. When you go back for your two-week checkup, the doctor typically removes stiches or staples and you’re placed in a boot where you’ll remain non-weight bearing for around four to six more weeks.

After your six to eight-week checkup, you’ll come out of the cast and slowly return to normal use of the foot. You may have x-rays performed as well to make sure your foot is healing properly. Range of motion should not be affected after surgery and with a little time you’ll be back to normal.

Flexor to Extensor Tendon Transfer (Girdlestone-Taylor)

Dealing with pain during walking or standing is a difficult way to go through life. When you’re dealing with a hammertoe deformity that you’ve developed, it can be difficult to do a lot of different daily tasks. Things such as finding shoes that fit comfortably, standing on your feet or walking can seem impossible. There are several ways you can try to correct this problem and considering a flexor to extension transfer is just one. Discover below what the Girdelstone Taylor procedure is and how it can help those who have the hammertoe deformity.

What is a hammertoe?

Basically, a hammertoe deformity is one in which the toe itself is bent in a shape that appears like a hammer. It can also cause the toes to cross over each other. This makes it very difficult to find proper shoes and also can cause corns to develop over time.

How is it treated?

Before surgery is considered there are a few things that should be tried to see if it will correct the deformity. Those include such items as splinting or toe sleeves and finding shoes that will assist in keeping the toes in the proper place. While these may help some, they may not be the solution and the Girdlestone Taylor Procedure should be considered.

What is flexor to extensor transfer?

This procedure is done as an outpatient procedure in the office of your physician. An incision is made on the bottom of the toe that is affected. There are two tendons that help the toe to bend and flex. One of the tendons is basically rerouted from the bottom of the toe to the top of the toe to help straighten it out. At times, there may also be a pin inserted during surgery to help keep the toe in place.

After Surgery

Typically, you’ll be able to go home the same day as the procedure unless there are other extenuating circumstances that you need to spend the night. You can generally walk while using a sandal but if you’ve had both feet done at the same time, you can expect to have some difficulty bearing weight on your feet. You’ll visit the doctor again in a few weeks to have the stitches removed and see how your foot is healing. Within four to six weeks after surgery you can return to your normal footwear. After the procedure, it should be easier to find shoes that are comfortable than it was before.

As with every surgery there are risks that will be discussed with your physician. If you’re dealing with a hammertoe deformity, talk with your doctor about the flexor to extensor procedure today to see if you’re a suitable fit.

Bunionette Deformity Correction

If you’ve been dealing with pain in your foot due to a bunionette, you’re probably wondering what can be done to reduce or get rid of the pain. Perhaps your pain has gotten worse or you’re just starting to deal with pain as the bunion is growing. When you’re looking into bunionette deformity correction, you may think that there’s no hope. However, in some cases the bunionette surgery can work wonderfully and reduce/completely get rid of your pain and issues you’re having. Here are some things to think about when looking into correction and surgery processes.

What is a bunionette?

Basically, this is a bone growth on the outside of your foot near your pinky, or 5th, toe. While you may not even notice a bump or growth there to start with, over time as the bunionette continues to grow, it can become quite painful. It’s also called a Tailor’s bunion in some circles.

Some people can do well with the bunionette deformity correction without surgery. Things such as getting shoes that are roomier on their feet, padding that area to protect it from rubbing on the shoes, and even custom inserts to help protect the area are tried. While this may help some, it doesn’t always work and the next step would be a surgical procedure.

What should you know about the surgery?

First, those who may benefit from surgery are the patients who have not gained any relief from the other methods already tried. Surgery is not the first line of defense for this ailment but it can relieve pain in those who do not receive relief in any other form.

This is an outpatient procedure so unless there are other complications to deal with, you’re going to be in and out in the same day. The surgeon you work with will go into detail on their plans, but generally the bunionette surgery entails the tissue on your outside of the foot and sometimes an incision is made into the bone itself. There are several different methods to help rid the foot of the bony growth and straighten out the curve that may have developed. Once your surgeon has looked over you records, they will go over the best options.

People who have a cut on their foot, lost circulation in the foot area, or that have an infection in the foot will not be good candidates for the procedure. Your doctor will advise the best route of dealing with the bunionette deformity correction to help relieve your pain and get you walking again.

If you have the surgery you can expect recovery to vary depending on your specific case. Most people are in a boot or splint to help the foot stay in place for anywhere from three weeks up to twelve. Be sure to follow all of your doctor’s orders afterwards so that you can make sure it heals properly and you can get back to business as usual.

All About Ankle Ligament Surgery

Pain in your ankles can arise from a variety of different things. Perhaps you’re dealing with an injury from playing your favorite sport or maybe due to a fall that you took. Maybe you’re dealing with arthritis in the joints or you’ve had a more significant injury due to a car accident. Whatever the case may be, when it comes to the ligaments in your ankles, sometimes you can get away with lots of rest and a few other topical methods. Other times you may need ankle ligament surgery to correct the issue at hand. Here are a few things to know about this type of procedure and the different options that you have.

Ankle Ligament Surgery

This procedure is what your physician will do to help repair a torn ligament due to an injury to the ankle area. This is used to help treat your ankle when you’ve had a serious sprain or if you’ve had instability in the ankle due to an injury. This is typically a procedure done within a day so you’ll be back home before you know it. You’ll leave in a cast that comes up to your knee and given some directions for follow up and how to handle the ankle itself.

Lateral Ankle Ligament Reconstruction

Also known as the Brostrom procedure, this is where the physician will repair one or more of your ligaments in the ankle. It is because you’ve had multiple sprains in your ankle, your ankle has become weak over time due to injury, or there may be a defect in the ankle area that this can help to correct.

If you’ve dealt with problems such as hindfoot Varus, midfoot cavus, or a disease such as Ehlers-Danlos where your ligaments are very loose, this is the surgery that can help you to get some stability back in your ankles. There are some risks involved but you should consult with your physician on your personal risks.

The procedure will involve you being put under general anesthesia or just some local anesthesia depending on the severity of the surgery. The surgeon makes a small incision and uses instruments to carry out the procedure if the surgery is a minimally invasive one. In some situations, the doctor will need to make a longer incision for severe cases.

The doctor will then go in and either shorten your ligaments, remove them, and attach your ankle differently to help give it stability, or do other constructive means to help give the ankle the strength it needs. Lateral ankle ligament reconstruction and ankle ligament surgery can assist you in getting back on your feet. Once you’ve gone through the period of about six weeks after surgery, you can start to bear weight on your ankle and getting back to life.

Achilles Tendinitis: Causes, Symptoms, & Treatments

Have you noticed when you’re walking or exercising that you have pain on the back of your lower leg down near the heel of your foot? If so you could be dealing with Achilles tendinitis. This condition is common for those who overuse the foot or after years of walking/running or exercising. This is a degenerative condition that can come on with age or if you’ve injured your leg. Take a look at what causes Achilles tendinitis and what the symptoms and treatment options you have available.

Causes

There are two types of this tendinitis, noninsertional and insertional. In the first type, it is common in those of the younger generation that are more active and it affects the middle of the tendon. This is where the fibers in the middle of the tendon have begun to breakdown after being torn.

Insertional Achilles Tendinitis affects the lower portion of the tendon itself and can happen to anyone at any age. Once the tendons have started to break or have been damaged, they can begin to calcify and become hard. This can also lead to bone spurs in the area as well.

The basic cause of this issue is repetitive stress to the area itself. This can happen because someone decides to push their body farther than they were ready to go. If you have very tight calf muscles and then begin an aggressive program of exercise, you can end up with this type of injury as well.

Symptoms

The symptoms of Achilles Tendinitis include things such as:

  • Severe pain in the area the day after you’ve done your exercise program
  • Presence of bone spurs
  • Experiencing pain along the tendon when you’re exercising or using the ankle area a lot
  • If you notice a thickening of the area
  • Swelling that does not go away

Treatment Options

Once you know that this type of tendinitis is what is causing your pain, there are several things you can try. Anti-inflammatory medications can help to reduce the swelling, as well as icing the area to relieve the pain and puffiness. Be sure to get plenty of rest and get off your ankle for an extended period of time to allow the tendon to heal and relax.

Reduce the amount of stress put on your tendon by doing calf stretches each day. Physical therapy and learning how to strengthen the area as well can help you to relieve the pain. Injections and shoe lifts can also help to reduce the pain in the area.

Finally, there are surgical options that should be sought as a last resort to your tendonitis. Discuss these options with your doctor to find out what is right for your situation.

What is Ankle Arthrodesis (Ankle Fusion)?

Dealing with pain is never a good thing but sometimes that pain can make it hard to do everyday chores. Something as simple as walking to the mailbox or even your kitchen can become quite difficult to do. This could be because of your ankle and an injury or arthritis that has taken over the ankle joint. When that happens you can consider a procedure called ankle arthrodesis, or ankle fusion, to help get the movement back that you’re used to.

What is ankle arthrodesis?

This procedure, commonly known as ankle fusion, is only completed when your ankle joint has been completely worn down. This could be due to a variety of things including a severe ankle fracture or degenerative arthritis in the joint itself. After you’ve injured the ankle, several years down the road, it can wear out the joint and it can become quite difficult to move it as you have. This procedure basically removes the joint and allows your tibia to grow together with your footbone. That will remove the joint completely and allow your pain to subside.

What should you expect with this procedure?

Before the surgery, you and your doctor will decide if this procedure is right for you. The ankle fusion is a great choice for those who are younger and are very active as it will not wear out like an ankle joint replacement could. Once you’ve been cleared for surgery your doctor will discuss with you whether an open procedure or arthroscopic procedure is best in your situation. They will also warn you of any risks and answer any questions you may have.

What about after surgery?

You will leave the hospital in a cast and in two weeks that one will be changed to a shorter cast. You cannot put weight on your ankle itself until you’re sure that the bones are fusing properly as they should be. When you have this ankle fusion procedure, it could take up to 12-weeks afterwards for that to be certain. For the best reduction of pain after ankle arthrodesis, it is advised that you keep your ankle elevated about your heart and propped up on pillows to reduce the swelling and throbbing.

Be prepared that you will have rehabilitation to go through and running “normally” will not be possible in the future. However, with the inserts available for your shoes and with rehab, you can begin to walk with a normal gait as you did before.

If you’re dealing with a large amount of pain due to arthritis or injury, an ankle fusion may be your ticket to relief. Consult with your physician to be sure you know the ins and outs of this procedure and to help decide if it’s the route to go for you.

What is Total Ankle Arthroplasty (Total Ankle Replacement)?

Suffering from pain when you’re trying to move can lead to less movement on your part. When you’re trying to stay in shape, get in shape, or just keep mobile, pain can put a stop to all of those. Ankle pain can cause you to not want to leave your home or being reduce to having to have assistance when walking. Pain from arthritis can most times be tolerated but when it progresses it can leave you dealing with more pain than you can handle.

How can you deal with this type of pain? How can you keep living life as you want to live it pain free and on your terms? There is a procedure called a total ankle arthroplasty that can offer some light at the end of your tunnel. Discover what this total ankle replacement is and who it might help.

What is a Total Ankle Replacement?

Total Ankle Arthroplasty, or commonly known as TAA, is a total replacement of the ankle joint area. This is used when there is significant arthritis in the joint due to age or sometimes a previous injury such as breaking the ankle. When you’re suffering from arthritis in the ankle, it can lead to deformation of the joint area, pain, and loss of cartilage.

The procedure is performed by an orthopedic surgeon and the entire goal of this process is to allow you to walk and move your ankle with no pain and better movement. The surgeon will inform you on when it is best to have the procedure for your specific case. Not all cases are alike and some may benefit from this total ankle replacement while others may need to put the surgery off.

There are some cases where TAA is not recommended such as those who have had infections in the joint area, neuropathy in the lower limbs, or in cases where dead bone is attached to the ankle area. These would not be good viable cases for the TAA as an option.

What Happens After Surgery?

After you have the total ankle replacement surgery, you’ll have a time where you do not need to put weight on the ankle. This will allow the ankle to completely heal and the joint to set in place as it should. You should use crutches to assist you in walking and keeping off the foot as much as you can. You’ll probably be placed in a type of cast or boot to help keep it stable and in place.

Talk with your orthopedic surgeon to find out if you’re the perfect candidate for total ankle arthroplasty today and get back to living life on your terms.

Types of Push Up Injuries and Prevention Tips

Trying to get in new exercise routines can be exciting but also dangerous if you’re not sure of the prevention tips you need to keep injury at bay. One of the easiest exercises to do to build your upper body is a push up. However, push up injuries can cause you to be in a lot of pain and reduce the exercise routine you’re wanting to do. It can also stop your progress if you’re having to recuperate. Here are a few of the common injuries seen with this type of exercise and also some push up injury prevention tips you can use to protect yourself.

Common Push Up Injuries

When you’re doing a push up there are a few places you can typically experience injury and pain if not done properly. One of those places is in your wrist. If you have a previous injury or your wrists are not strong enough, you can experience pain and discomfort in the wrist area.

Other areas that can be injured during your push up exercises include the rotator cuff in your shoulder, chest injuries, injuries to your back and elbows as well.

Prevention Tips

Doing a push up properly will help you to prevent any injury during the popular exercise. Make sure that your position and method of doing the specific exercise is correct. Incorrect positioning of your hands, shoulders, and elbows are key factors in push up injuries. When you’re not positioned correctly, you can end up in a lot of pain and have to restrict your exercise routine.

You must also make sure your back is aligned properly during the exercise itself. If you let your body hang to low when pushing up, you can strain your lower back area. Keeping your back straight and aligned over top of your arms will help to prevent that.

Make sure that your hand positioning is not turned out or in and that you are not spread too far apart with your arms. This can cause injury to your wrists and elbows, and possibly your shoulders if not done correctly.

Be sure that when you’re doing push ups that you are performing them in slow steady motions. You do not want to jerk back up and down as this can cause push up injuries as well. Be sure that you’re keeping the proper positioning and keeping your movements smooth and steady.

Push up injuries can be quite often and can take you down for several weeks if you’re not careful. Be sure to follow these push up injury prevention tips above to keep your exercise routine moving forward.

Types of Lower Back Pain (Lumbago)

Back pain is something that no one wants to deal with; however, many people deal with it daily. Lower back pain can be caused by a variety of different scenarios ranging from a pulled muscle to something more involved such as a slipped disc or degenerative disc disease. Understanding low back pain, or lumbago as it is sometimes called, is easier to do when you know what you’re dealing with. Check out the different types of lower back pain and what they are caused by. Learning the signs and symptoms may help you to find a diagnosis quicker rather than later.

Sciatica Back Pain

Many people suffer from this type of pain where the sciatic nerve is being compressed. It causes pain in the lower back that shoots down the leg when the area is aggravated. It can cause shooting pain when you try to stand up or change positions, is worse when sitting down, and can cause weakness in your leg or foot of the affected nerve. This lower back pain needs to be seen by a doctor as if it is left untreated, it can cause permanent nerve damage.

Nighttime Back Pain

If you’re able to get relief when you lay down from the pain you’re dealing with during the day, most times you can start to heal. Rest is needed and is very crucial for the body’s healing process. However, if you’re dealing with nighttime back pain, laying down to rest can make the pain worse. Lower back pain when you lay down can be caused by things such as arthritis, kidney stones, spinal disease, or degeneration of the spine. Because you cannot rest when you lay down with nighttime pain, you should consider seeing your doctor sooner rather than later. As mentioned, rest is crucial to the healing process and pain when you try to rest could be a sign of a more serious lumbago pain.

Low Back Strain

You can strain your lower back region by doing a variety of things such as sitting in one position for too long, moving heavy objects, or physically exerting yourself over your limits. With a strain in your lower back you may feel things such as stiffness in your back when trying to move about, pain in the thighs or buttocks, and even pain that gets worse whenever you cough or try to bend over. If so, you should consult your doctor as this can be a simple strain or signs of a worse condition.

Lower back pain is not something to just push to the side. If you’re dealing with lumbago, lower back pain, it is best to consult your doctor to rule out anything serious and prevent irreversible nerve damage.