The foot and ankle are two of the most versatile and complex areas of your body. One foot alone contains 26 bones supported by a network of muscles, tendons, and ligaments. When everything is working well, you hardly give them a thought. But when a problem arises, it’s often impossible to ignore.
More than 11 million visits were made to physicians’ offices in 2003 because of foot and ankle problems, including more than 2 million visits for ankle sprains and strains and more than 800,000 visits for ankle fractures.* Some conditions that may affect your foot and/or ankle could be:
Fortunately, most cases of foot and ankle pain respond well to treatments like rest, ice, orthotics (shoe inserts), prescribed exercises, and anti-inflammatory medications. Local cortisone injections can also provide pain relief.
However, when these medical treatments fail to provide adequate pain relief, surgery may be an option. Often foot and ankle surgery is performed on an outpatient basis using minimally invasive techniques. These techniques may mean less pain and less risk, as well as a faster recovery time.
* http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/fact/thr_report.cfm?Thread_ID=100&topcategory=Foot - January 2006