Ankle & Foot Pain Specialist – Orange County

If you are suffering from ankle or foot pain, don’t wait any longer. Contact OC Sports and Wellness today to schedule a consultation. We will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan to get you back to doing the things you love.

For many athletes, foot and ankle pain is a common occurrence. There are several causes for these types of injuries and conditions, but they are primarily caused by either overuse or trauma. OC Sports and Wellness offers many safe and effective non-surgical treatment options that can lead to full use of the foot or ankle without pain.

Ankle injuries rank among the most prevalent orthopedic conditions, typically resulting from the ankle rolling and the foot being forced inward, causing the tearing of ligaments on the outer side of the ankle. The recovery time depends on the severity of the sprain.

Most ankle sprains do not necessitate surgical intervention. Treatment primarily involves rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Anti-inflammatory medications can alleviate pain, while a physical therapy exercise regimen can expedite recovery and facilitate a return to regular activities. For acute ankle sprains, wearing a boot or brace is crucial to prevent recurring sprains.

Whether you’re an avid athlete, a dedicated professional, or want to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle, foot or ankle pain can be a significant obstacle. It can disrupt your daily activities and prevent you from pursuing the things you love.

Ankle and foot injury from running in Orange County
Ankle and foot injury from running in Orange County

Symptoms of Ankle and Foot Injury

As with any sport, you will deal with minor aches and pains as a runner, hiker, or distance walker—that’s normal. But when the pain doesn’t disappear, it’s time to speak to a sports injury specialist. 

The symptoms of ankle or foot injuries can manifest in various ways, from persistent pain and limited range of motion to subtle discomfort during routine activities. Here are noteworthy signs that something more serious is up:

  • Popping sensation or sound at the time of injury
  • Reduced ability to run, walk, or bear weight
  • Sharp pain in the front, back, inside, or outside of the ankle
  • Tenderness when you touch the ankle
  • Stiffness or swelling in the joint
  • Tenderness or bruising
  • Restricted range of motion
  • Dull, constant aching
  • Pinching sensations
  • Instability in motion
Achilles Tendinitis

Achilles tendinitis is caused by injuring the Achilles tendon, often through overuse, located at the back of the lower leg, close to the heel bone. While anyone can develop this condition it is most often seen in those who run. The pain associated with this condition can increase over time if the condition is not treated.

Ankle Sprain

An ankle sprain is a common ailment of sports and other activities such as walking, hiking, and jogging. It occurs when the person twists or rolls the ankle in some awkward manner, stretching the ligaments within the ankle. Ligaments stabilize the ankle joint, thus preventing excessive movement. Most sprained ankles are due to damage to the ligaments on the outer side of the ankle.

Foot and Ankle Osteoarthritis

Foot and ankle osteoarthritis is seen in many people as they age.  This is commonly associated with a loss of cartilage within the affected joint.  This problem leads to pain, swelling, and stiffness in the affected joints.  Most commonly, it is seen in the ankle joint, the midfoot, or in the big toe.  

Hallux Rigidus

Arthritis in the big toe, also known as hallux rigidus, is a common cause of pain, swelling, and stiffness in the big toe.  It is aggravated by excessive upward movement of the big toe joint, such as prolonged running or walking uphill.  Tenderness and swelling usually occur over the top of the joint, and a large bone spur can also form.  This painful joint can also cause pain in other areas of the foot, as people try to avoid putting pressure on the great toe and putting more weight on the outside of the foot.

Call our office if you suspect a sprain or have pain and swelling in your ankle. Self-care measures may be all you need, but talk to Dr. Sunshine to discuss whether you should have your ankle evaluated. If signs and symptoms are severe, you may have significant damage to a ligament or a broken bone in your ankle or lower leg.

OC Sports and Wellness empowers you with the knowledge you need to make informed decisions about your health and well-being and embark on a journey toward relief and recovery. This means personalized treatment plans tailored to your specific needs, whether reducing inflammation, alleviating pain, or improving overall mobility.


Osteochondral Lesion of the Talus (OLT)

An osteochondral lesion of the talus (OLT) is an area of damaged cartilage and bone on the top of the deep ankle bone within the ankle (talus).  It is also known as osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) of the talus.  Sometimes, it can occur after a bad ankle sprain.  It can also occur with ankle instability or overload of the ankle due to malalignment.  Some OLTs are asymptomatic.  Others can present with significant pain, swelling, clicking, or catching of the ankle joint.  The pain generally is worse with higher levels of activity such as running or jumping. 

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is caused by the inflammation of the plantar fascia that travels along the bottom of the foot. This tissue connects the heel bone to the toes. The pain felt with this condition can be intense and is felt primarily in the heel. In severe cases if gone untreated, a person may lose their ability to walk.

Posterior Tibial Tendinitis

The technical name for this condition is Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction and is a very common problem of the ankle and foot. It is the result of the posterior tibial tendon tearing or becoming inflamed. When this happens, the tendon cannot provide support and stability for the arch of the foot. Treatments may include orthotics and braces, as well as physical therapy.

Other Condtions

There are a few other problems that can cause ankle, foot, or heel pain, so it is important to be evaluated to rule out some of the other less common causes.  MRI is initially not indicated, but it can be helpful to rule out other causes of heel pain after conservative management fails to improve symptoms.

Relief from ankle or foot pain.

As a sports medicine doctor, Dr. Sunshine digs deeper than a general physician who might only prescribe medication. Our practice employs advanced diagnostics to pinpoint the root cause of your pain, not just mask it with pills. This could involve imaging tests, physical therapy evaluations, or nerve studies.

Dr. Sunshine’s approach focuses on minimally invasive treatments and conservative techniques. He understands the power of protecting your ankles and feet for long-term results. Call 949-460-9111 today and take the first step towards lasting relief.

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