Foot & Ankle Injuries

The doctors at our Orthopaedics Department are leaders in the treatment of foot and ankle conditions. Conditions that we treat include:

  • Ankle sprains and instability: usually caused when the foot is suddenly twisted with the sole pointing inwards; this is known as an ‘inversion injury’. The ankle can remain unstable after it has healed, giving way and causing further injuries. In some cases, this can be treated without surgery, with physiotherapy to help strengthen the joint. However, if the ankle doesn’t return to normal you may be offered surgical or arthroscopic intervention to repair damage to the joint
  • Achilles tendon pain and tendinitis: the Achilles tendon is the large tendon at the back of the ankle that connects the calf muscle to the heel bone. Pain can be caused by changes in training intensity and/or by arthritis or other inflammatory disorders. Doctors will normally use an MRI scan to diagnose the problem and, in many cases, it can be treated without surgery through rest and physiotherapy. However, in some cases you may be offered tendon replacement surgery
  • Achilles tendon rupture: when the Achilles tendon becomes torn – either partially or completely. This can happen during intense training and/or if the tendon is weak. Urgent treatment for a complete rupture involves surgery, which can lead to a better chance of a satisfactory recovery
  • Arthritis: the smooth cartilage that lines the bones inside the ankle joint can become worn with age or as a result of a previous injury. This causes friction between the bones when you move. Pain gradually becomes worse over time and, if this interferes with your daily activities, you may need to have ankle arthroscopy to tidy up the joint and help restore your normal movement. Alternatively, you may be offered ankle joint replacement or joint fusion. Arthritis can also affect other joints in the foot including the big toe, midfoot, and hindfoot. Some people are affected by rheumatoid arthritis, a long-term auto-immune disease that can cause arthritis to develop in the foot and ankle
  • Bunions: these can develop on the joint that connects the big to the foot and can be part of a condition called hallux valgus when the big toe joint bends towards the little toes. It’s normally caused by injury, but may be made worse by ill-fitting shoes or high heels and can be treated non-operatively with toe spacers or padded insoles; or surgically to correct the deformity
  • Flat feet: can be caused by a problem with the tendons that supports the arch of the foot or by arthritis in the joints around the heel. It can also be caused by tibialis posterior tendon dysfunction or rheumatoid arthritis in the mid or hind foot. Your surgeon will be able to advise you about the best treatment, which may include surgery
  • Fractures of the ankle including stress fractures and 5th metatarsal fracture
  • Freiberg’s disease, affecting the 2nd metatarsal bone in the foot which becomes misshapen
  • Heel pain (plantar fasciitis): caused by inflammation in the fascia, the thick lining of the sole of the foot
  • Ganglions, harmless fluid-filled lumps
  • Ingrown toenail
  • Morton’s neuroma, caused by a small swelling, normally between the third and fourth toes
  • Peroneal tendon problems
  • Sesamoiditis: inflammation of the sesamoid bones (under the big toe joint)
  • Tailor’s bunion, a lump at the base of the little toe on the outside of the foot
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome (compression of the posterior tibial nerve, on the inside of the ankle)
  • Toe deformities – hammer, mallet and claw toe
  • Tibialis posterior dysfunction: a condition that causes flat foot
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