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Foot And Ankle Deformities

Understanding Foot & Ankle Deformities: Causes, Treatment

Foot deformities constitute a broad spectrum of conditions mainly affecting the feet, tendons, and bones. A foot deformity, such as a bunion, can be common or extremely rare, such as a tarsal coalition. It can be painful and uncomfortable and limit movement and mobility, greatly impacting a person's daily life. 

There are many different types of foot deformities. In some cases, deformities may be present from birth, while others can occur over time or well into adulthood.

In some conditions, treatment may be required depending on the type and severity of the deformity. Special bracing and orthotics can correct it in case of minor deformity, but severe cases need surgery.


Common Types of Foot Deformities

A few of the most common types of deformities are as follows:-

Bunions (Hallux Valgus)

Bunions can be a very painful foot deformity. They are common in women and can result from wearing ill-fitting shoes, which put awkward pressure on the foot. This led to inflammation and irritation and the change in the bones' position in and near the big toe.

Treatments depend on the severity of the condition. Your orthopedist may recommend shoe inserts (orthotics) or surgery for severe cases.

Hammertoe, Claw Toe, and Mallet Toe

Usually, the second toe on the foot next to the big toe gets affected by the hammer toe. This causes the joint to remain bent in a "hammer" shape, with the middle joint pointing upward. Claw toe is similar to hammer toe and occurs mostly in older women.

Mallet toe can affect any toe on the foot, causing the joint closest to the toenail to bend downward. Sometimes claw toes result from medical conditions, but hammer and mallet toes are mostly caused by wearing tight or ill-fitting shoes.

Flatfoot (Pes Planus)

We are born with flat feet, but our bones and joints become flexible as time passes. Flexible flatfoot is when the arches of the feet disappear when standing but reappear when sitting. If you have flatfoot, it can become painful. If orthotics and arch supports do not help, your orthopedic doctor may recommend surgical options.

High Arches (Pes Cavus)

When bearing weight, if the sole of the foot is distinctly raised or hollow in appearance, it is called a high arc. Pes Cavus might result from some underlying hereditary condition or a symptom of an underlying neurological, orthopedic, or neuromuscular condition. Treatment for this condition is physical therapy, but if symptoms are severe, surgery may be required.

If you have a foot deformity that is causing you pain or reduced function, contact one of the experts, Dr Rajesh Malhotra.

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