My Blog

Posts for tag: Ankle Sprains

By Dr. Howard Schaengold
April 08, 2014
Category: Sports Injuries

Baseball batThe bat cracks and the crowd goes wild. The crowd’s roar can be heard from high school ball diamonds all the way to Safeco Field. Spring is here. Whether you warm the bleachers at your kids’ games or take in a Mariners game this weekend, one thing you hate to see is a player down on the field with an injury. Baseball injuries may be an inevitable part of the game, but proper treatment can lead to full healing and help players avoid future complications.

Ankle sprains are so common that we sometimes underestimate their damage. Running the bases, dashing sideways to field a ball, or sliding into second can all cause the ligaments in your ankle to stretch too far. Pain may keep you off your feet for a while, but many players don’t take the proper time to heal properly from a sprain. The end result is weak ankles, future sprains, and chronic problems throughout their lives.

Overtraining can lead to Achilles tendinopathy and heel pain from plantar fasciitis, further limiting you from playing your best game. These conditions will get worse if you try to tough it out and play through the pain. You need to rest and seek proper treatment to avoid permanent damage to your lower limbs.

Wearing cleats can aggravate forefoot problems like neuromas and sesamoid injuries. Many cleats fit too tightly in the toe and bother bunions and hammertoes, too. Make sure your cleats are fitted snugly but contain enough room for your toes.

Finally, there are always those odd injuries, like getting hit with a bat or a ball or being stomped on by somebody’s cleats. Whatever form your baseball injuries take, Dr. Howard Schaengold at The Plateau Foot & Ankle Clinic in Sammamish is the place to go for expert diagnosis and treatment. In Sammamish, Bellevue, Issaquah, and Redmond, we’re only a phone call away at (425) 868-3338. We specialize in sports medicine and will help you heal completely so you can get back in the game without pain.

Photo credit: Now and Zen Photography via freedigitalphotos.net

By Howard Schaengold, DPM
January 02, 2013
Category: Ankle Problems

Sprained AnkleHave you ever twisted your ankle while participating in a sport?  Or maybe you simply slipped while walking?  Either way, ankle sprains and fractures should not be ignored.  Ankle sprains are common injuries that occur when ligaments are stretched or torn, with nearly 85% occurring laterally, or on the outside of the ankle joints. By visiting your podiatrist in Sammamish, you can receive the care you need to get back on your feet.

Symptoms of a Sprained or Fractured Ankle

Your symptoms upon spraining your ankle may vary depending on the severity of your pain and how it occurred. The symptoms of an ankle sprain may include:

All ankle sprains will produce some level of pain at the time of your injury and the joint will also feel tender, beginning to swell.  If your sprain is mild, you may experience a slight loss in the function of your joint.

With a more serious sprain, you will most likely fall during the initial impact of the injury.  It will often be difficult to move or put weight on your injured ankle, producing bruising and swelling from the ankle to the foot.  Once you have had ankle sprains or other ankle injuries before, you may have a weakened joint that creates more of a chance for future injuries to take place.

Common symptoms of an ankle fracture are similar to ankle sprains, and include:

  • Pain to touch
  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Inability to walk on the leg
  • Deformity around the ankle

Treatment and Prevention

Treatment for your ankle sprain begins with self-care.  The RICE evaluation is highly recommended upon the initial onset of your injury:

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Compression
  • Elevation

When your podiatrist feels you are ready to begin participating in sports and exercising, you can help prevent further sprains and fractures by wearing an ankle brace during the first initial months of being back on your ankle.  Special wraps are also available to protect your ankle. 

If your symptoms still persist after taking the initial step of at-home-care, or if you suspect you might have a fracture, a visit to your Sammamish podiatrist may be in order.  With a consultation with Howard Schaengold, DPM of Plateau Foot & Ankle Clinic, your ankle sprain or fracture can be treated and further prevented.  There is no need to put an end to your athletic lifestyle with recurring ankle injuries.

By Howard Schaengold, DPM
September 04, 2012
Category: Children's Feet

Children's FeetLike adults, children and adolescents can experience a variety of foot and ankle problems. Many foot problems, such as flat foot are congenital, while other problems including heel pain or ingrown toenails are usually the result of an injury.  

Because of a child’s rapidly growing bones and tendons, however, many confusing symptoms associated with their foot and ankle problems go unnoticed. For this reason, it is important that parents pay attention to subtle symptoms. A thorough examination of your child's feet by a Sammamish podiatrist periodically may detect an underlying defect or condition and help minimize problems later in life.

Common Foot Problems

Children can experience a variety of foot problems, many of which go away as the child’s feet become more developed, such as pigeon toes, flat feet and knock knees.  In most cases these congenital foot and leg problems do not require any medical intervention. Other common issues that may warrant a visit to the podiatrist include:

Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are common in children, especially during warm months when kids are more likely to walk barefoot.  Forming on the bottom of the feet, these warts are caused by a virus that enters the skin, most often in public areas such as pools or locker rooms.  The condition can be very uncomfortable — like walking on a small pebble or stone—but also highly preventable and treatable.

Ankle Sprains

Ankle sprains are very common foot injuries for active kids, especially those who participate in sports. Sprains occur when the ligaments supporting the ankle are stretched or torn.  Mild ankle sprains heal with little treatment, while severe tearing may require more extensive care including extended immobilization followed by physical therapy. As a general rule, rest, ice, compress and elevate the child’s ankle immediately following the injury.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when one or both sides of the nail begin to break through and grow into the soft skin of the toe. This can lead to painful irritation and infection. Common causes of ingrown toenails include poor fitting footwear, toe injuries or poor nail trimming.  Caught early, a child’s ingrown can be treated at home, but if pain persists or the condition worsens, treatment by a podiatrist is necessary to eliminate the infection.

Choose Proper Footwear

Many pre-existing foot conditions can be relieved and new problems prevented by simply ensuring your child is wearing proper shoes. Shoes that are too tight can cause blisters, calluses and corns on the toes and heels. Ingrown toenails can also develop and become infected. A child’s feet are constantly growing and developing, so it may be necessary to change shoe size every few months. Additionally, with time shoes have a tendency to lose proper cushioning and arch support. Footwear that shows a lack of shock absorption or wear and tear should also be replaced to reduce the risk for injuries.  

If you notice your child limping, constantly rubbing their feet, tripping frequently or consistently complaining of foot pain, then have them examined by your Sammamish podiatrist or physician. Many problems can be easily identified and treated, and early intervention is the key.

By Howard Schaengold, DPM
August 15, 2011
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Ankle Sprains  

Ankle SprainAn ankle sprain is one of the most common injuries to the ankle, resulting from a fall or a sudden twist that forces the ligaments out of their normal position. It’s no wonder so many athletes suffer from ankle sprains every year.

The severity of an ankle sprain depends on whether the ligament is stretched, partially torn or completely torn. Look for the following symptoms if you think you have sprained your ankle:

  • Immediate pain at the site of the tear
  • Immediate swelling
  • Hearing or feeling something tear, pop or snap during the twist
  • Bruising
  • Pain and difficulty moving the ankle
  • Inability to walk or bear weight on the ankle

Treating your ankle sprain

Early treatment of a sprained ankle can improve the recovery time and minimize symptoms. The following steps will reduce swelling and help alleviate pain until you can get into our Sammamish office.

  • Rest: Stay off your ankle as much as possible. This will ease pain as well as reduce the swelling.
  • Ice: It’s critical to ice your injured ankle throughout the day for the first 24 hours or until the swelling goes down.
  • Compression: Elastic wraps, such as an ACE bandage, will help reduce swelling.
  • Elevation: Rest with your ankle above the level of your heart to keep swelling to a minimum.  

Preventing injuries to the ankle

With extra care, you can help avoid ankle injuries.

  • Wear appropriate shoes for each activity
  • Throw out old, worn out shoes
  • Be cautious of wet, slippery floors at work or at home
  • Wear ankle braces or have your ankle taped during sport activities for increased stability

If you’ve injured your ankle and are experiencing pain or difficulty walking, come into our Sammamish office for an examination and proper diagnosis. If an ankle sprain is not treated promptly with the necessary attention and care, chronic problems of pain and instability may result. Howard Schaengold, DPM can recommend a treatment plan based on the severity of the sprain to ensure proper healing and a fast recovery.