There are 26 bones in the foot and potentially all of them can be traumatised through a direct impact injury, falling over, inappropriate biomechanics or overuse. Whereas some fractures are easy to identify (displaced fractures), others are more difficult to detect. Avulsion fractures (e.g. anterior process of calcaneum, tip of fibula) tend to need a different treatment than complete fractures through the central aspect of the bone. Intra-articular (affecting the joint) fractures may need more attention than extra-articular fractures. Some bones have a very good healing potential (eg.calcaneum) whereas other need a long time to consolidate or are at risk of not healing properly (talus). Some fractures are more likely to be stable whereas others may need more protection to heal uneventfully.
Small avulsion fractures as well as stress fractures of the foot normally only need conservative treatment including relative rest, adjust weight-bearing status and some sort of protection like a boot for a short period of time. Other bones will need more attention and if bones are displaced will benefit from an open reduction and internal fixation with metalwork. Some fractures if left untreated will even result in an inability to use foot properly again (Lisfanc type of injury).
It is crucial to fully understand the mechanism of injury and its implication on the rehabilitation. We therefore use only the best types of imaging equipment and work closely with a group of specialist radiologists to get the most detailed information possible to assess the type of injury and provide the optimal treatment.