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Understanding The Treatment Options for Workplace Foot & Ankle Injuries

Visit a workers’ comp doctor to treat your workplace-related injuries, including ankle sprains or fractures. Call today to schedule an appointment!

Sustaining serious foot and ankle injuries can keep you from your normal routine. It’s even worse if you injure yourself at work this way, and you should never delay a visit to a workers’ comp doctor in Brooklyn, NY, like Metro Healthcare Partners. These teams not only provide personalized treatment options that get you back on your feet quickly but also offer guidance for any work injury-related questions you may have.

Read on to learn how you might want to approach workplace-related foot and ankle conditions. 

The Causes and Dangers of Common Foot and Ankle Injuries

No matter what type of industry you work in, there’s always a possibility of injuring your foot or ankle while on the job. Taking a wrong step and missing a stair or landing on your foot wrongly can cause a sprain or fracture of your ankle joint.

This is not an uncommon issue. In fact, the National Athletic Trainers’ Association reports that two million Americans suffer from acute ankle sprains every year. Another study from the association’s Journal of Athletic Training also finds that 70% of patients with acute ankle sprains then develop residual physical disabilities, such as chronic ankle instability.

Unfortunately, sprains and chronic ankle instability aren’t the only injuries that can impact workers. Other common foot and ankle injuries include the following:

  • Fractures
  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Ruptured or inflamed tendons in the foot or ankle

Damage to the bones in your ankle joint can cause the area to look deformed and feel tender. Sprains, which constitute damage to your ankle ligaments and surrounding soft tissues, often result in pain, bruising, and swelling. Either of these injury types can limit your mobility, slowing your exercise efforts, which has a direct impact on your mental health

Conservative Treatment Plans for Workplace Ankle or Foot Injuries

What should you do to counteract these complications? Seek medical advice as soon as you sustain foot and ankle injuries in the workplace! 

For minor soft tissue damage, doctors will typically stick to conservative treatment plans, such as:

The RICE Method

Anytime you sustain an injury to a limb, this helpful at-home treatment plan consists of the following:

  • Resting
  • Icing the injury
  • Compressing the injury
  • Elevating the limb

These steps will help to alleviate pain, swelling, and inflammation for a few days after a minor injury. 

Physical Therapy

Strengthening your muscles after an ankle injury can reduce the chance that you’ll re-injure the area and need further medical care. A study published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy confirmed that participants who received exercise-based rehabilitative care immediately after their injury were less likely to re-injure the area. However, patients who waited over two months to receive physical therapy were twice as likely to face an injury later.

Topical or Oral Medications

You can take an over-the-counter pain medication to relieve discomfort in your foot or ankle with a topical analgesic to temporarily soothe aching muscles.

Invasive Treatment Options for Foot or Ankle Injuries

Treatment Options for Workplace Foot & Ankle Injuries

Some doctors may take a more conservative approach when first treating foot and ankle injuries. In particular, they want to help you avoid the longer recovery period that often comes with surgery, which keeps you away from your job. However, when injuries do not heal on their own with physical therapy and lots of rest, surgery may become necessary.

For example, surgery may help correct certain tears in the ligaments or realign bones. In this case, undergoing an invasive procedure can quickly alleviate pain and start your healing process. 

Some common procedures doctors recommend to relieve foot and ankle pain include the following:

  • Tenoplasty: A surgical technique that reconstructs tendons in the ankle or foot. 
  • Osteotomy: A surgery that cuts or reshapes bones to promote stabilization. 
  • Endoscopic plantar fasciotomy: A procedure that releases pressure in your foot’s plantar fascia caused by prolonged standing. 

How To Prevent Injuring Your Foot or Ankle in the Workplace

Treatment options for foot and ankle injuries carry different recovery times. Do you want to avoid lengthy recovery periods? Consider these measures to prevent common injuries at work:

  • Wear supportive shoes. Being steady on your feet requires wearing shoes with ample comfort and support.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Excess weight puts more strain on your feet and joints.
  • Stretch daily. Strengthen your muscles and soft tissue by stretching. 
  • Be mindful of your surroundings. Be especially careful around uneven or slippery surfaces to avoid a bad fall. 

See a Trusted Foot and Ankle Specialist at Metro Healthcare Partners

A minor ankle sprain should heal with rest and applying heat and ice to the site of the injury, but stress fractures in your foot and other serious injuries are different. These more severe cases require extensive physical therapy, surgery, or a combination of treatments for common foot and ankle injuries.

Why not contact Metro Healthcare Partners at (718) 550-2056 to seek treatment for your workplace-related injury? Our doctors accept most insurance plans, including workers’ compensation, no-fault, and PIP (personal injury protection), and same-day appointments may be available.

To explore the benefits of workers’ comp physical therapy and prompt medical treatment, visit Metro Healthcare Partners immediately after you sustain a workplace injury.

Frequently Asked Questions About Workplace Foot or Ankle Injuries

How Do I Know if My Foot Injury Is Serious?

Foot injuries are serious if there is an open wound that appears red or infected or severe pain or swelling. If you can’t put any weight on the foot, see a doctor as soon as possible.

How Long Does It Take To Recover From a Sprained Ankle?

It can take as little as one week or as long as several months to recover from an ankle sprain. The recovery time depends on the total damage to the ligaments and many other factors.

How Do You Rule Out a Foot Fracture?

You can diagnose a foot fracture through imaging scans (X-rays, bone scans, CT, and MRI). Sometimes, you need multiple scans to diagnose foot and ankle injuries.