Foot pain and a normal x-ray?
Eastern Foot Care has recently seen an influx of new patients presenting with undiagnosed foot pain and a normal x-ray report. In circumstances where pain and intermittent swelling are present, this has been of particular concern to our podiatry team.
X-ray imaging is a highly reliable and cost effective modality for detecting structural abnormalities within the bones and joints of our feet. For example, a fracture line within the outer layer of a metatarsal bone (at the front of the foot) should be clearly identified with routine x-ray imaging, and the common features of osteoarthritis are also normally visible. However, despite the usefulness of x-ray imaging in these circumstances, there are many important structures within our feet and ankles that are not shown at all on x-ray films. Accordingly, serious injuries and degenerative conditions occurring without disruption to the hardest part of bones and joints will not be identified with this type of imaging.
People suffering foot pain with either constant low-grade or intermittent swelling, especially on the top (dorsum) of the forefoot, require an especially thorough approach to diagnosis. In response to these circumstances, podiatrists at Eastern Foot Care commonly rely on advanced clinical examination methods to identify the structure(s) suspected of involvement in the injury, and will often implement a temporary short-term period of protection for the foot. Imaging types such as MRI, musculoskeletal ultrasound and x-ray are frequently ordered to assess the full spectrum of tissue types and structures in the target area, which ultimately determines the long-term management plan.
Foot disorders presenting in this way commonly include bone stress injuries, disruption to deep ligaments, acute and chronic bursitis, inflammation and degeneration of joint capsules (e.g. synovitis or effusion), and various forms of tendonitis. In relation to these examples, none are visible by x-ray imaging, but all have the potential to cause severe pain, swelling and activity limitation. Our podiatry team at Eastern Foot Care frequently encounter these disorders and are well equipped to provide a reliable diagnosis and effective management plan.
See a Sports Podiatrists at Eastern Foot Care to discuss your foot problem and interpret medical imaging in the context of a dedicated management plan.
To make an appointment contact our friendly staff at:
Eastern Foot Care Knox
5a/426 Burwood Hwy, WANTIRNA SOUTH (Knox)
Ph: (03) 9887 2233