severe pain & swelling in ankle and foot
(Farnborogh, Hants, UK)
Around 5-6 months ago I became aware of some pain in my right ankle & foot it was only coming now and then and was bearable so I put it down to the fact I had done a little more walking than usual or my ankles and feet were tired as am not as young as used to be so quite simply a rest usually helped temporarily.
However since before Christmas the pain has become so intense I am in agony all the time and I am finding just standing is hard work let alone walking.
My foot and ankle are noticeably swollen and the pain ranges from my lower leg, ankle & foot - especially on the base of my heel.
I attended A % E on 31/12/2013 as I couldn't put any pressure on my foot or leg and the pain was reducing me to tears & it takes a lot normsally for that to happen !
They asked if I had knocked or banged my foot/leg recently or fallen over causing an injury but I haven
They then did an xray as swelling was clearly visible. The xray showed the bones in foot were crushing together & there wasn't much room between them as there should be also the doctor showed me on the xray that my heel was a lot shorter than it should be & the ball on my ankle joint was worn down and is flat rather than round and this was of some concern to the doctor as it would cause issues with the ankle functioning properly.
He advised me that I would need to see a specialist to investigate further.
Unfortunately it looks like it hasn't been referred to anyone yet as I have not heard anything from anyone.
I am just wondering if you would have a possible diagnosis of my symptons please?
I have sat & thought of any obvious occasions which could of caused this damage and the only thing that has happened was a car crash I was involved in in 2007 in which I tore ligaments in my right foot
Is there a chance it has anthing to do wth that?
Answering your question would be a little bit easier if I knew more about you. This would include your age, your weight and whether or not you are/were athletic.
The reason I ask this is because it sounds like your right foot and ankle are undergoing arthritic degeneration and if I could place your symptoms within the context of your age, weight and athletic history it would be easier.
Most people who develop severe arthritis usually see a gradual worsening of the problematic area over time. I do not think your car accident in 2007 caused the problem but it certainly may have been a contributing factor in the worsening of your problem.
Based on the x-ray explanation that was given to you it seems like there is a fair amount of degeneration in the ankle and foot, although I do not know what a "short heel" actually means.
This problem should be treated by a specialist as it seems to be more than just simple every day wear and tear arthritis that most of us develop as we age. You should be persistent in your efforts to see a specialist.
In the meantime there are things you can do to reduce the discomfort that you are experiencing. The first recommendation would be to ice the area on a regular basis as that will help reduce some of the inflammation and perhaps even some of the swelling. Additionally, I would recommend you purchase an ankle brace. By stabilizing the foot and ankle, you reduce some of the stress on the arthritic joints and that too may reduce pain and swelling.
Lastly, if you can tolerate this type of medication, I would recommend some anti-inflammatory medication as this too will help with the pain and swelling. This type of medication is not a cure and should only be taken for short periods of time, say 2-3 weeks as the medication does have side effects.
In very severe instances of pain, using crutches or a cane can also be helpful as they reduce the amount of body weight that you apply to the ankle and foot joints and should make you more comfortable.
Marc Mitnick DPMDISCLAIMER