Background: Despite prevention efforts, suicide rates continue to rise, prompting the need for novel evidence-based approaches to suicide prevention. Patients presenting with foot and ankle disorders in a podiatric medical and surgical practice may represent a population at risk for suicide, given risk factors of chronic pain and debilitating injury. Screening has the potential to identify people at risk that may otherwise go unrecognized. This quality improvement project (QIP) aimed to determine the feasibility of implementing suicide risk screening in an outpatient podiatry clinic and ambulatory surgical center. Methods: A suicide risk screening QIP was implemented in an outpatient podiatry clinic and ambulatory surgical center in collaboration with a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) suicide prevention research team. Following training for all staff, patients ages 18 years and older were screened for suicide risk with the Ask Suicide-Screening Questions (ASQ) as standard of care. Clinic staff were surveyed about their opinions of screening. Results: Ninety-four percent of patients (442/470) agreed to be screened for suicide risk and nine patients (2%; 9/442) screened non-acute positive; zero for acute risk. The majority of clinic staff reported that they found screening acceptable, felt comfortable working with patients who have suicidal thoughts, and thought screening for suicide risk was clinically useful. Conclusions: Suicide risk screening was successfully implemented in an outpatient podiatry clinic. Screening with the ASQ provided valuable information that would not have been ascertained otherwise, positively impacting clinical decision-making and leading to improved overall care for podiatry patients.
Achilles tendon injuries are among the three most frequent sports-related injuries of the foot and ankle. Proper function of the Achilles tendon is critical to performance in sports. A thorough knowledge of the anatomy and biomechanical function of this tendon is essential to the effective treatment of these injuries. Distinguishing among the various pathologies of the Achilles tendon is an important first step toward successful treatment and return of the athlete to sports activity. The term Achilles tendinitis is a nonspecific diagnosis that does not accurately describe an actual injury. This review is intended to provide the sports medicine physician with a means of classifying Achilles tendon injuries and, thus, arriving at an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 97(1): 37–48, 2007)
The diagnosis of Sever’s injury (apophysitis calcanei) has previously been partly based on radiographic findings in the calcaneal apophysis. Sclerosis and fragmentation have been supposed to represent signs of inflammation due to tractions from the Achilles tendon. The clinical findings, diagnostic criteria, and studied population are often poorly defined. We sought to define diagnostic criteria by analyzing clinical and radiographic characteristics in a population with Sever’s injury and to compare the findings with those of a control group of matched, symptom-free children.
We assessed 30 consecutive children with Sever’s injury with high levels of pain but high physical activity levels in sports activities and 15 pain-free matched controls.
One-leg heel standing showed 100% sensitivity; the squeeze test, 97%; and the palpation test, 80%. All three tests showed 100% specificity. All of the patients and controls showed increased density of the apophysis. Half of the pain-free controls showed fragmentation versus almost 90% of children with heel pain.
The diagnosis of Sever’s injury is clinical, not radiologic. Radiologic findings of increased density and fragmentation are found also in pain-free controls with high levels of physical activity and may, therefore, represent normal growth and development. We suggest that the diagnosis of Sever’s injury should be based on patient history and the results of two specific clinical tests. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 103(5): 361–368, 2013)
Turf-toe injuries can occur in many athletic endeavors. This article describes the different injuries that occur to the first metatarsophalangeal joint that may be termed “turf toe.” These injuries may result in significant morbidity. Thus proper diagnosis is paramount for instituting appropriate treatment to facilitate an athlete’s prompt return to the playing field. Two case studies are presented to illustrate injuries of the first metatarsophalangeal joint in the athletic population. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 93(4): 325-332, 2003)
Abnormal foot morphology has been suggested to contribute to overuse injuries in athletes. This study investigated the relationship between foot type and injury incidence in a large sample of competitive triathletes not wearing foot orthoses during a 6-month retrospective analysis and a 10-week prospective cohort study. Foot alignment was measured using the Foot Posture Index and the Valgus Index, and participants were assigned to supinated, pronated, and normal foot-type groups. Overall, 131 triathletes sustained 155 injuries during the study. Generally, foot type was not a major risk factor for injury; however, there was a fourfold increased risk of overuse injury during the competition season in athletes with a supinated foot type. The results of this study show that triathletes with a supinated foot type are more likely to sustain an overuse injury. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 95(3): 235–241, 2005)
The etiology of running-related injuries remains unknown; however, an implicit theory underlies much of the conventional research and practice in the prevention of these injuries. This theory posits that the cause of running-related injuries lies in the high-impact forces experienced when the foot contacts the ground and the subsequent abnormal movement of the subtalar joint. The application of this theory is seen in the design of the modern running shoe, with cushioning, support, and motion control. However, a new theory is emerging that suggests that it is the use of these modern running shoes that has caused a maladaptive running style, which contributes to a high incidence of injury among runners. The suggested application of this theory is to cease use of the modern running shoe and transition to barefoot or minimalist running. This new running paradigm, which is at present inadequately defined, is proposed to avoid the adverse biomechanical effects of the modern running shoe. Future research should rigorously define and then test both theories regarding their ability to discover the etiology of running-related injury. Once discovered, the putative cause of running-related injury will then provide an evidence-based rationale for clinical prevention and treatment.
Distal tibiofibular syndesmosis contributes to dynamic stability of the ankle joint and thereby affects gait cycle. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the grade of syndesmosis injury on plantar pressure distribution and dynamic parameters of the foot.
Grade of syndesmosis injury was determined by preoperative plain radiographic evaluation, intraoperative hook test, or external rotation stress test under fluoroscopic examination, and two groups were created: group 1, patients with grade III syndesmosis injury (n = 17); and group 2, patients with grade II syndesmosis injury (n = 10). At the last visit, radiologic and clinical assessment using the Foot and Ankle Outcome Score was performed. Dynamic and stabilometric analysis was carried out at least 1 year after surgery.
The mean age of the patients was 48.9 years (range, 17–80 years), and the mean follow-up was 16 months (range, 12–24 months). No statistically significant difference was noted between two groups regarding Foot and Ankle Outcome Score. The comparison of stabilometric and dynamic analysis revealed no significant difference between grade II and grade III injuries (P > .05). However, comparison of the data of patients with grade III syndesmosis injury between injured and healthy feet showed a significant difference for dynamic maximum and mean pressures (P = .035 and P = .49, respectively).
Syndesmosis injury does not affect stance phase but affects the gait cycle by generating increased pressures on the uninjured foot and decreased pressures on the injured foot. With the help of pedobarography, processing suitable orthopedic insoles for the injured foot and interceptive measures for overloading of the normal foot may prevent later consequences of ankle trauma.
We present a case of a snowboard injury that caused a combination of a complete deltoid and anterior talofibular ligament rupture, without bony or syndesmotic injury. Initial surgical repair for both ligaments was performed. We describe the etiology of this injury to demonstrate the cause and existence of medial and lateral ankle ligament rupture without osseous and syndesmotic involvement and to create awareness of these types of injuries.
Lower-extremity injuries have become increasingly common as sports performance demands have risen. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one method used to return athletes to competition as quickly as possible, but it has received criticism and lacks support. This review examines the literature on hyperbaric oxygen therapy and soft-tissue sports injuries. In the various studies, the location of the injury seemed to influence the effectiveness of treatment. Injuries at areas of reduced perfusion such as muscle–tendon junctions and ligaments seemed to benefit more from hyperbaric oxygen treatment than injuries at the muscle belly. Differences in the magnitude of the injury and in the time between injury and treatment may also affect outcomes. The authors sought to explore these variables as they relate to soft-tissue sports injuries and to weigh the benefits of hyperbaric oxygen therapy against its potential risks and high cost. More randomized controlled clinical trials with larger sample sizes must be conducted before hyperbaric oxygen can be established as a safe adjunctive therapy for soft-tissue sports injuries. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 93(4): 298-306, 2003)
Background: It has been shown that anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries are more prevalent in female athletes than in male athletes. Soccer and basketball are considered high-risk sports for ACL injury in female athletes. Several studies have reported a relationship between ACL injury and measures of foot structure. This study was conducted to investigate the relationship between foot structure and ACL injury rates in female and male soccer and basketball players.
Methods: One hundred five soccer and basketball players (53 women and 52 men) were recruited and divided into an ACL-normal group (n = 89) and an ACL-injured group (n = 16). Two measures of foot structure (subtalar joint neutral position and navicular drop test values) were recorded for each subject. An independent t test and a paired t test were used to analyze differences in ACL status, foot structure, and sex. A χ2 analysis determined whether the prevalence of ACL injury was independent of sport.
Results: No statistically significant differences were found in the foot structure measures between women and men. Female soccer and basketball players had an ACL injury rate seven times that of male players.
Conclusions: Values derived from subtalar joint neutral position measurement and the navicular drop test were not associated with ACL injury in collegiate female and male soccer and basketball players. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 97(5): 371–376, 2007)