Foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons give tips to avoid winter-related foot and ankle injuries
Rosemont, Ill. (December 11, 2019) – Winter’s wet and icy conditions increase the likelihood of foot and ankle injuries. Members of the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS), the leading organization for lower extremity medicine and foot and ankle surgery, urge you to take extra safety precautions this winter to prevent injuries and keep you on your feet.
“The foot and ankle are particularly susceptible to injuries in areas with snow, ice, and slippery conditions,” said foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon, John T. Campbell, MD, from the Institute for Foot and Ankle Reconstruction at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.
Slips and falls on the ice may cause your ankle to twist, leading to pain and injury, Dr. Campbell added. “Ankle fractures are one of the most common injuries in the winter months. Another common injury is a fifth metatarsal fracture in which a piece of bone on the outer part of the foot is pulled off when the foot twists inward.”
Twisting the ankle may also stretch or tear the ligaments resulting in an ankle sprain. Although less severe than a fracture, sprains can be extremely painful and limit mobility, Dr. Campbell explained. “It can be hard for patients to tell if they have a sprain or a fracture, so they may need to seek medical attention.”
If your foot or ankle pain does not subside an hour or two after the injury or if you have difficulty putting weight on your foot, find a foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeon near you. “The saying, ‘if you can walk on it, it isn’t broken’ is incorrect,” said Dr. Campbell. “Many patients will limp around in pain on a fractured foot or ankle.”
To avoid winter wipeouts that may result in foot and ankle injuries, take these precautions:
- Watch out for slippery driveways, sidewalks, and stairs
- Walk slowly to maintain balance, especially if you’re carrying items
- Wear supportive shoes or boots with durable soles and avoid high heels
- Wear wool or synthetic socks and take frequent breaks indoors to keep your feet warm
Learn more about identifying ankle fractures and caring for sprained ankles from FootCareMD.org.
About Foot and Ankle Orthopaedic Surgeons
Foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons are medical doctors (MD and DO) who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders and injuries of the foot and ankle. Their education and training consist of four years of medical school, five years of postgraduate residency, and a fellowship year of specialized surgical training. These specialists care for patients of all ages, performing reconstructive surgery for deformities and arthritis, treating sports injuries, and managing foot and ankle trauma.
About the AOFAS
The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS) mobilizes our dynamic community of foot and ankle orthopaedic surgeons to improve patient care through education, research, and advocacy. As the premier global organization for foot and ankle care, AOFAS delivers exceptional events and resources for continuous education, funds and promotes innovative research, and broadens patient understanding of foot and ankle conditions and treatments. By emphasizing collaboration and excellence, AOFAS inspires ever-increasing levels of professional performance leading to improved patient outcomes. For more information visit the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society online at aofas.org.
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