As experts in diagnosing and treating foot and ankle conditions, we know how much foot and ankle pain can impact your quality of life. And we also know how minor foot and ankle problems can turn into big ones. We take a multidisciplinary approach to treating all forms of foot and ankle pain -- from acute injuries such as sprains to long-term degenerative issues. And we offer a variety of innovative surgical and non-surgical treatments that will be individualized for your specific needs.
We treat the full range of acute and chronic foot and ankle injuries and diseases, including:
- Achilles tendinopathy – When the Achilles tendon undergoes degenerative changes and becomes thickened, causing inflammation and pain.
- Achilles tendon rupture – A complete tear of the Achilles tendon, a rupture causes pain and loss of movement and strength
- Adult acquired flatfoot deformity (posterior tibial tendon dysfunction) – Commonly known as a flat foot or collapsed arch, the loss of arch occurs because the large tendon on the inside of the ankle becomes stretched out and no longer supports the foot’s arch as it should.
- Ankle arthritis – Occurs when there is a breakdown of cartilage in the ankle joint from trauma (such as a car accident), autoimmune diseases (such as rheumatoid arthritis), or infection.
- Ankle fracture – This occurs when one or both of the bones of the ankle – the tibia or fibula – is broken. In cases where the fracture is unstable, surgical fixation is usually recommended.
- Ankle instability – Not treating an ankle injury can result in damage to the ankle joint’s cartilage, leaving the ankle unstable. This causes pain and can lead to loss of ankle function.
- Ankle sprain – When the ankle twists and the ligaments are stretched and/or torn, causing pain and swelling
- Arthritisof big toe joint (hallux ridigus)
- Bunion (hallux valgus) – Occurs when there is misalignment of the first metatarsal (one of five long bones that run from mid-foot to the toes) in relation to the big toe. The often-noticeable “bump” is not new bone or overgrowth of bone but actually the metatarsal itself.
- Cavovarus foot deformity – Often associated with some neurological disorders, the feet have higher than typical arches while the feet also turn in at the heels.
- Flatfoot deformity (or pes planus) – The arches of the foot are flat, causing the entire bottom of the foot to press against the floor during any weight-bearing activities. Can occur in one foot or both feet.
- Foot drop – Often associated with a neurological disorder, foot drop involves not being able to lift the front part of the foot, and may drag the foot while walking.
- Foot fracture – Also known as a broken foot, a fracture in the foot is very common and ranges in severity. A severe break can require surgery to keep the bone in place while it heals
- Hammertoe deformity – Often occurs because of poor-fitting shoes, causing one or more of the second through fourth toes to bend at the middle joint, causing it to look like a hammer.
- Lower extremity deformity correction
- Metatarsalgia – Pain and inflammation in the ball of the foot that can occur for many reasons, including wearing high heels, standing for long periods of time, or having poor blood supply to the feet.
- Midfoot arthritis – Usually occurring from an injury to the midfoot, this condition causes pain in the midfoot that is worse first thing in the morning and after standing or walking for long periods of time.
- Morton’s neuroma – Affects the area between the third and fourth toes on the ball of the foot, causing pain and/or burning. Usually caused by an injury or pressure from poor-fitting shoes.
- Osteochondral defect of talus – Usually occurring from a sprained ankle, the cartilage of the anklebone becomes bruised, can crack and may lead to the formation of a cyst on the talus bone.
- Peroneal tendinopathy – Injury leading to inflammation and/or tearing in the tendons that run along the outside of the anklebone.
- Plantar fasciitis – The ligament that connects the heel bone to the toes and supports the arch of the foot. Plantar fasciitis occurs when this ligament gets irritated and inflamed, and is the most common cause of heel pain.
Diagnosing Foot and Ankle Problems
To make our diagnosis, we start with your clinical exam, conduct a thorough health history, and take X-rays. Depending on what your X-rays show, further imaging, such as a CT scan, MRI, or ultrasound, may be required. Our Radiology Services are state of the art and will help us determine how to treat your condition.
Note: If you have suffered any sort of foot or ankle trauma, seek treatment right away. Failure to do so risks further complications, such as chronic instability, weakness, pain or malunion (where a fracture heals in a bad position that is difficult to undo). Getting that diagnosis quickly means we can treat you while the injury is simpler to treat. But, even if a problem has been misdiagnosed or is a long-term issue, we can still help.
Treating Foot and Ankle Injuries and Conditions
Based on our years of experience, we may collaborate with multiple disciplines and areas within our health system and our Comprehensive Musculoskeletal Center, including radiology, sports medicine, plastic surgery, emergency medicine, rheumatology, and physical medicine and rehabilitation to develop an individual treatment plan for you.
Surgery for Foot and Ankle Injuries and Conditions
If we are able to effectively treat you without surgery, we will. But if you’ve already been treated without a good outcome, or you have a severe issue or a bad deformity, we will discuss your surgical options and help you decide which option is best for you.
We perform about 1,000 foot and ankle surgeries each year, ranging from simple bunion and toe procedures to the most complex hindfoot reconstructions. We are on the forefront of orthopaedic technology, offering cutting-edge techniques and developing new procedures for difficult problems.
For example, we are one of the few health care providers in Southeast Michigan to offer total ankle replacement. It is a good surgical option for patients with severely damaged joints who want freedom from pain and greater mobility. The procedure involves replacing the entire ankle joint with a prosthesis made up of metal and plastic. Our surgeons are confident in the relief that total ankle replacement can bring to certain patients, and they are highly experienced in this surgery.
Throughout all of our services to our patients, we collaborate with areas such as Radiology, Sports Medicine, Plastic Surgery, Emergency Medicine, Rheumatology, and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Our team approach enables us to pool together all of our knowledge and experience to better care for our patients.
Some of the foot and ankle surgery solutions we offer include:
- Flatfoot reconstructions - This procedure combines work on multiples bones and tendons in the foot to restore the arch, relieve pain and improve function.
- Total ankle arthroplasty - This is an ankle replacement treatment for ankle arthritis, utilizing the newest implants available. This surgery is only appropriate in certain patients with ankle arthritis, but in the right person it can be very successful in preserving function and providing excellent pain relief.
- Fusion procedures for both the ankle, mid-foot and big toe - Fusion is an excellent pain-relieving procedure for arthritic joints. Fusion involves removing the cartilage from a joint so it grows into one bone, eliminating the pain of bones rubbing against each other.
- Bunion Correction - Bunions come in all shapes and sizes. There are hundreds of described techniques to fix bunion deformities, and they usually involve cutting bone and releasing ligaments to make the big toe straight and keep it there. We will examine your foot and X-rays carefully to determine which procedure is appropriate for you.
- Ankle arthroscopy - This procedure is for patients with cartilage lesions in the ankle joint. Using two small incisions, we are able to stimulate new cartilage growth in a less invasive manner, resulting in faster recovery.
- Thin wire external fixation techniques - In cases of severe deformity or in a limb salvage situation, we perform this procedure to either correct the deformity or save the limb.