Foot Care from A to Z

Thomas P. Lyman, BS; Tracey C. Vlahovic, DPM, FAPWCA


Dermatology Nursing 

In This Article


Fractures in the foot usually are a result of either trauma or an over-use injury. One of the most common pedal fractures is an eversion injury (e.g., slipping from walking on a curb) resulting in a fragmented fifth metatarsal base. Car accidents or crush injuries typically fracture across the metatarsal necks or shafts. A "bed post injury" or hitting the small toe against a solid object often results in a fifth digit fracture. Falling from a height may cause a calcaneal fracture, whereas a twisting type of fall will generally fracture the ankle. Rapid increases in activity are the cause of most stress fractures in the calcaneus and the metatarsals. When a fracture is suspected, a radiograph is the first diagnostic modality of choice. Other options include MRI, CT scan, or bone scan. These modalities may be more helpful in diagnosing stress fractures which radiographically don't appear for 2 weeks after the pain began. Fracture treatments include casting to immobilize the affected area if the fragments are properly aligned and surgery to correct non-anatomically aligned boney fragments (Schnaue-Constantouris, Birrer, Grisafi, & Dellacorte, 2002).