Foot Trauma: Injuries That Cause Top of the Foot Pain

June 25, 2024 1:50 pm Published by

Falls, accidents, and other incidents can cause foot trauma— bone, joint, or soft tissue damage to your ankle or foot. While pain on the top of your foot after a serious incident could be a bone break (fracture), there could be other internal damage going on.

Here, we’ll discuss the common types of foot trauma as well as why it’s important to see a podiatrist for foot trauma treatment. Spoiler alert: feet in pain should be waited on hand and podiatrist’s brain!

Foot Trauma: Fractures and Sprains

For every ten broken bones, it’s estimated that at least one of those breaks occurs in the foot. That’s a lot. However, the numbers get even higher when it comes to sprains, with an estimated two million occurring each year. With this in mind, it’s important to understand bone breaks and sprains since they could both cause pain on top of your foot, and may require a foot care specialist for proper diagnosis.

Broken Bones

While any bone in your foot could break, some fractures are more common than others:

A stress fracture to the bone at the top of your foot (tarsal navicular stress fracture): Although our bones are strong, repeated or pinpoint stress could cause a tiny crack (stress fracture) to form and grow if left untreated.

Ankle fractures: Since there are seven different bones that make up your ankle, any one of them could break during a traumatic incident. Additionally, the smaller bone in your lower leg, the tibia, may also break right above your ankle, causing you to feel pain from your lower leg all the way to the top of your foot.

Foot Trauma: Sprains and Joint Injuries

The non-broken types of foot trauma generally include sprains and other joint injuries such as:

Ankle sprains: The bands of soft tissue stabilizing your ankle (ligaments) can be sprained when your ankle rolls or twists out of the normal range of motion, causing tears or stretching of one or more of the ligaments.

Achilles tendon injuries: The Achilles tendon is the hard band of tissue that connects the muscles in your calf to your heel bone. If this tendon is injured during an incident, it can cause swelling and even rupture, causing pain above your heel.

Joint dislocation: A joint dislocation is when two bones are separated where they join together (at the joint). It can occur in your ankle when one of your ankle bones breaks due to the force of the trauma. If this happens, it’s also likely that you will have an ankle sprain since your ligaments will be pulled in abnormal directions.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Foot Trauma Injuries

Most injuries related to foot trauma will have similar symptoms, including:

  • Moderate to severe pain
  • Redness and swelling
  • Difficulty walking/lack of mobility

If the accident or incident caused an open wound, there may be bleeding. In most cases, an X-ray is needed to determine the type and extent of the injury. Aside from relieving the pain, a foot doctor can identify and treat all types of foot trauma injuries to help get you back on your feet as quickly as possible.

Common Foot Trauma Treatment Plans

Treating mild injuries such as a sprain may involve ice, rest, and over-the-counter medicine to reduce pain and swelling. However, most foot trauma injuries are more severe than what can be treated at home.

For injuries that impact your quality of life, such as a fracture or sprain, you may need a splint, physical therapy, and even surgery. A podiatrist will work with you to develop the best treatment plan for your situation. However, the more quickly you make the appointment, the better your chances of a full recovery.

Get Treated for Foot Trauma Injuries Fast

At The Foot & Ankle Group, all of our SW Florida podiatrist locations have the experience and technology to diagnose and treat foot trauma to get your feet in tip-tap-top shape. If you have foot trauma, we will do our best to fit you in for a same-day appointment

Schedule an appointment with The Foot & Ankle Group today.

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