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Foot and Ankle

Orthopaedic experts at UT Southwestern Medical Center provide comprehensive diagnostic, treatment, and rehabilitation services to patients who have foot and ankle injuries and conditions. When possible, we use conservative treatments; if surgery is necessary, we have experience in the latest techniques.

Advanced Foot and Ankle Care

For patients who have foot and ankle injuries or conditions, every step can be painful, keeping them from activities they love and making everyday tasks a challenge.

UT Southwestern’s physicians work to provide each patient with attentive, personalized care to relieve the pain and mobility problems associated with foot and ankle conditions.

Our orthopaedic surgeons are highly trained in conservative foot and ankle treatments and committed to providing effective, compassionate care. Patients can rest assured that our team will consider surgery only if all conservative, nonsurgical treatments haven’t worked. 

We offer the latest treatments, such as platelet-rich plasma injections, shockwave or extracorporeal pulse activation therapy (EPAT), and minimally invasive or arthroscopic surgery.  

Foot and Ankle Conditions We Treat

We treat a broad range of injuries and conditions, such as:

  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Acquired flat foot deformity
  • Arthritis
  • Bunions
  • Congenital and adult deformities
  • Flat and high-arch feet
  • Hammertoes
  • Heel pain
  • Malunions (improperly healed fractures) of bones or joints
  • Metatarsal pain and injury
  • Neuromas
  • Overuse injuries
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Shin splints
  • Stress fractures
  • Tendon injuries
  • Tendonitis
  • Traumatic injuries
  • Turf toe 

Symptoms of Foot and Ankle Conditions

Symptoms of foot and ankle conditions include:

  • Abnormally bent joints
  • Corns and calluses
  • Instability in ankle or foot
  • Noticeable bumps or deformities on foot
  • Persistent or intermittent pain
  • Rashes or growths
  • Redness or swelling of joints or tendons
  • Restricted movement of foot and ankle
  • Swelling, numbness, or tingling

People who are experiencing debilitating pain or symptoms that affect their mobility should schedule an appointment with one of our experts as soon as possible.

Diagnosis

Our orthopaedic specialists can often diagnose a foot or ankle injury or condition based on a physical examination and medical history. 

We might also order X-rays or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to make sure there are no fractures or to see where tissue is wearing thin.

Conservative Treatments

Our dedicated team of physical therapists, pedorthists, and orthopaedic surgeons works together to create a comprehensive treatment plan that is individualized for each patient’s needs.

We typically start treatment by offering patients conservative approaches, such as:

  • Medications or injections, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids
  • Orthotics, boot walkers, or custom braces for functional mobilization
  • Physical therapy to restore function, strength, and movement
  • Platelet-rich plasma injections, in which a small amount of blood is drawn and spun in a centrifuge to separate the platelets; the platelets are then injected into the foot or ankle to speed healing
  • Shockwave or extracorporeal pulse activation therapy (EPAT) directed into the soft tissue, stimulating blood flow and metabolism and accelerating healing

Surgery for Foot and Ankle Conditions 

For some patients, conservative measures fail to control foot and ankle pain, and only surgical treatments can ease pain and restore function. Our foot surgeons offer the latest in reconstructive techniques, such as minimally invasive or arthroscopic surgery, open surgery, and realignment surgery for foot deformities. 

Minimally Invasive Techniques

When surgery is needed, we use the least invasive technique possible. Minimally invasive or arthroscopic surgery has less discomfort and scarring and a shorter recovery time, getting patients back on their feet quicker.

Minimally invasive surgery requires a small incision and a tiny camera to be inserted into the surgical site to guide surgeons through the procedure. Small surgical instruments are then inserted through the incision to perform the surgery.

Open Surgery

In some cases, open surgery is required. With advancements in open surgery techniques and technology, incisions are smaller than ever, making recovery time shorter. Our orthopaedic surgeons are highly trained and skilled in performing reconstruction and the most complex surgeries.

Following surgery, our physical therapists work closely with each patient to ensure a complete recovery.

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