Common Foot and Ankle Questions and Answers

Many of the same fears and worries plague those experiencing foot and ankle pain. Dr. Jeffrie Leibovitz offers his answers to many of these common questions to help patients understand their symptoms and take the first step to treating their underlying condition.

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  • How do orthotics help?

    Closeup of shoes walking down paved pathPodiatrists can use many different treatment options for lower limb issues, including custom orthotics.

    Orthotics are custom medical devices created for your unique feet. They control abnormal biomechanical processes during your gait cycle. For example, if your foot pronates, which is when the arch rolls excessively inward after your foot makes contact with the ground, an orthotic device would control the excessive motion.

    When the aim of orthotics is to control movement, we are talking about functional orthotics. There is a second kind (accommodative orthotics), which is used to protect anatomy. Accommodative orthotics are generally softer and not intended to control motion.

    These medical devices are used to treat and prevent an array of issues, including bunions, abnormal foot arches (both high and low), hallux limitus (stiff big toe), neuromas, ulceration/calluses, forefoot pain, and plantar fasciitis.

    If you would like to find out if orthotics can help relieve your pain and restore your foot function, come in for an evaluation. We provide comprehensive foot care services at our Indianapolis, IN podiatrist office, so give us a call at (317) 545-0505 and request your appointment today.

  • Do bunions and bunionettes need surgery?

    feet standing on tiptoe on a wooden surfaceBunions and bunionettes are progressive conditions, which means they will gradually worsen in severity. Treatment options involve protection or correction. Protection involves changing the environment around the deformity by shoe section and modification, padding, and orthotics. Correction involves surgery to correct the bone deformity. Conservative care has a better success rate in the initial stage of these deformities. Ultimately, the decision to undergo bunion surgery is your call.

    If you are considering having surgery for a bunion or bunionette, it is important that you carefully balance your “wants and needs.” The present limitations, pain, and eventual progression should be weighed against the length of recovery, risks of complications, and family or job restrictions. Understanding every step of the recovery process will lead to the bests results as well as lower the stress while you wait to get back to full activity. Little details like: how long do I need to keep my foot dry (10-14 days)?, how long until I can drive (Right feet have a longer interval than left)?, or when can I start to exercise (Swimming and cycling can start before walking and running)?

    There are certainly cases when bunion surgery makes sense, but this should be a discussion we have here in our Indianapolis, IN office. We’ll be happy to assess your situation and help you determine the best course of action. Give us a call at (317) 545-0505, or take advantage of our online form to request your appointment today.