Dr. Marizeli Olacio of Omega Medical Group (OMG) has helped athletes of all ages and ability levels overcome their foot and ankle sports injuries, from recreational youth sports participants all the way up to NFL players and members of the Miami Heat. We understand how important activity is to you, and giving you the personalized attention you need to get back in the game as quickly as possible is our top priority, whether you’re a professional athlete or just play for fitness and fun.
Common Foot and Ankle Sports Injuries
It is important to know that the foot and ankle work together to provide balance, stability, movement, and propulsion with 26 bones and 33 joints. Some common injuries we regularly treat at our Miami-area offices include:
- Ankle Sprains – Perhaps the most common lower limb injury, ankle sprains occur when one or more of the ligaments supporting the ankle joint stretches or tears after being hyperextended beyond its normal range. This can happen during sports, or even from misjudging a curb or step. It’s important to seek our help quickly if you have a sprain—improper treatment increases the risk of re-injury, as well as long-term instability.
- Ankle Fractures – A bone fracture is a condition in which a bone is cracked or broken. The same types of injuries that cause sprains may also fracture one or more of your ankle bones—the talus (ankle bone) and lower leg bones (tibia and fibula). As a result, you may not even realize your ankle is broken, mistaking it for a bad sprain. Keep aware for swelling, bruising, severe pain, and tenderness to the touch in the affected ankle.
- Achilles Tendon Injuries – Your Achilles tendons enable your feet to move up and down, and therefore run and jump. Many patients, and especially those who are middle-aged, develop Achilles tendinosis when the tendon suddenly has to endure excessive strain from intense activity; in severe cases the Achilles tendon may even partially or completely rupture.
- Heel Pain – The leading cause of heel pain for adults is plantar fasciitis, which can result from athletic overuse. For children and teens, there is a condition known as Sever’s disease (calcaneal apophysis), which results from inflammation of growth plates and tight tendons pulling on the exposed growth plate of the heel, which causes increased pain.
- Lisfranc Injuries – The Lisfranc joint complex is found in your midfoot, where the metatarsal bones connect to the bones in the hindfoot. They are held in place with a band of ligaments. There are several different injuries that can occur in this midfoot joint complex, including sprains, bone dislocations, and fractures. A Lisfranc injury is often mistaken for a simple sprain, and patients often attempt to “walk it off.” However, this is a severe injury that should not be ignored. It may take months to heal and may even require surgery. The most commonly experienced symptoms of Lisfranc injuries are pain, bruising, and swelling in the midfoot.
- Stress Fractures – The bones in your feet are susceptible to different kinds of breaks, including stress fractures. These particular fractures are small cracks in bone that develop over time through repetitive impacts (usually on an biomechanical unstable foot and weak or osteoporotic bone) rather than a single traumatic injury. Fatigued soft tissues lose shock absorption, and impact forces get transferred directly to the bones, which start to crack under the stress.
Our Sports Medicine Philosophy
Many other doctors and podiatrists make “rest” a central part of their treatment programs for many foot and ankle sports injuries—in other words, staying off your feet for an extended period of time. While rest can be an important component of the healing process, it’s extremely frustrating for everyone, especially active athletes who want to go, go, go!
By contrast, our focus when it comes to sports injuries is to get people active again as quickly as possible. Even if it’s only partial weight bearing or reduced impact exercise at first, we do everything we can to get you back on your feet, moving, as soon as possible. This not only aids healing, but also helps you better maintain your strength and mobility during recovery time, reduces the need for rehab, and encourages you to remain optimistic throughout the process of whole body healing.
We personalize our care based on the type and severity of the injury as well as the goals and needs of each individual, selecting from a range of treatment options in order to create a program designed just for you. The OMG team is proud to provide several advanced treatments to our patients, including platelet-rich plasma therapy, stem cell therapy, minimally invasive surgical techniques, and Total Contact Orthotics, which help correct your feet even while you’re sitting—not just when you’re standing.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a weekend runner or a pro in your prime—nothing is more frustrating for athletes than injuries keeping them on the sidelines. Let Dr. Olacio and Omega Medical Group help you get back on your feet and provide results that keep your feet in step for better health—many times a lot sooner than you might think! To schedule an appointment at our office in North Miami Beach or Miami shores, please call (305) 514-0404 today.