Give Attention to Ailing Feet


Has your foot or ankle been bothering you? Orthopedic surgeon Christopher Koziara, M.D., M.S., shares a few tips on recognizing three common ailments, along with some reasons why optimal healing goes hand in hand with professional medical care.

An ankle sprain is a painful, swollen injury that results when the ligaments supporting the ankle bones and joint are stretched beyond their normal range.

“Always seek medical care for a sprain,” says Dr. Koziara. “A healthcare provider will assess the severity of the injury and recommend appropriate treatment, which may include medication, rest, compression wraps, and rehabilitation exercises.”

If improperly treated, a sprain can weaken your ankle and boost susceptibility to future sprains. Repeated sprains can lead to long-term issues, such as arthritis and ongoing ankle instability.

Plantar fasciitis is inflammation of the tissue on the sole of the foot, extending from heel to toes. The result is heel or arch pain that gradually worsens over several months. This pain often flares up first thing in the morning or after sit-ting for prolonged periods. People with overly flat or high-arched feet are more susceptible to developing this condition. Obesity, wearing shoes with poor sup-port, and jobs requiring long periods of standing can also trigger plantar fasciitis.

A healthcare provider’s assessment is needed for proper diagnosis and treatment. Effective therapy may include stretching exercises, orthotic shoe supports, and a foot splint worn while sleeping at night.

Achilles tendonitis is an aching, stiffness, tenderness, or pain in the tendon that connects the calf muscle to the heel bone.

“This term encompasses a variety of conditions with the Achilles tendon. Patients may present with symptoms ranging from mild pain in the back of the ankle to a bony enlargement resulting in a bump at the back of the heel bone.”

The most effective long-term care involves a healthcare provider. Treatment may involve medication, physical therapy, and specialized bracing.

If you have foot or ankle issues, talk with your primary care provider or make an appointment with Dr. Koziara at Allegan Medical Clinic’s Allegan Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Center at 269-673-5571.

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