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3 Subtle Signs of a Foot Fracture

We treat all kinds of bone fractures at Tuscaloosa Orthopedic & Joint Institute. It’s a common injury that can affect anyone, regardless of age or activity level. The causes can range from high-impact activities such as sports and accidents to simple missteps or falls. 

If you have foot pain after any of these unfortunate events, it could be a muscle strain, a ligament sprain, or a full-fledged foot fracture. The question is: How do you know if you’ve broken your foot?

Dr. Bryan King and Dr. Jeffrey Cuomo are here to help you spot the signs of a foot fracture so you can get the help you need. 

Our expert medical intervention reduces your risk of complications and speeds up your recovery. Take a moment as our experts guide you through three subtle signs of a foot fracture.

1. Visual cues of a foot fracture

The first sign of a foot fracture is often visible. 

Swelling is a common reaction to any injury, but in the case of a fracture, it’s usually more pronounced and localized around the injured area. 

Also, look for bruising in multiple colors, from black and blue to red, purple, and yellow. Discoloration happens when the blood vessels break during the trauma. 

Tenderness in the area is also a telltale sign; if it hurts to touch or press gently, chances are it’s more than just a sprain.

2. Pain: More than just discomfort

Like swelling, pain is part and parcel of most injuries, but with a foot fracture, it’s different. It may start as a dull ache and escalate to sharp, intense pain, especially when trying to bear weight on your foot. 

You can easily misinterpret this pain and write it off as a simple sprain, but don’t dismiss it. If the pain persists or worsens despite rest and over-the-counter pain medications, it might be a sign of a fracture.

3. Functional limitations

It’s tough to stand on or move a fractured foot.  You’ll probably find walking, climbing stairs, or even flexing your foot challenging. If this describes your day, it’s a strong indication that you may have a foot fracture.

How our experts treat foot fractures

Once we diagnose a foot fracture, we develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. For example, your treatment may include bracing, splinting, or casting to stabilize your foot and promote healing. 

If you have a severe fracture, we may recommend surgical interventions like pin track and external fixation to realign your broken bones.

To help with the pain, over-the-counter pain medications usually manage mild-to-moderate discomfort, but if the pain is intense, we prescribe medications to get you past the worst of it.

If you suspect a foot fracture, don't hesitate to call us at Tuscaloosa Orthopedic & Joint Institute in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

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