Flat feet are barely noticeable for some people, but for others, the condition leads to bothersome complications, persistent pain, and impaired mobility and functioning. At Next Step Foot & Ankle in Philadelphia, Dr. Albert Giagnacova, DPM, provides a range of effective treatments for flat feet, including custom orthotics. For individualized care, call or schedule your appointment online today.
Normal foot arches that develop properly have a prominent upward curve in the middle of the foot and are able to support and stabilize the tendons and ligaments in your foot and lower leg.
If you have flat feet or fallen arches, your arch either hasn’t developed properly or has collapsed over time.
Flat feet are often present from birth, but you may also develop flat feet over time due to aging, overuse, or after a ligament tear, fracture, or other types of injury.
An arch also may collapse as a complication of certain medical conditions, such as diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.
In addition to visiting a trained podiatrist like Dr. Giagnacova, there’s a simple test you can do at home to help you determine if you have flat feet.
Find some water and a concrete surface and get your feet wet. Stand on the surface as normal and step away so you can examine the imprints. If your arches are normal, the inside curve of your foot will be missing from the imprint. If you have flat feet, you should be able to see almost the entire imprint of the base of your foot.
Flat feet may cause redness, pain, and swelling that inhibits walking.
As the arch collapse worsens, your heel bone can shift out of alignment. This may cause ulcers or bony bumps to develop in your skin, and in some cases, flat feet forces other joints out of alignment.
After determining the severity and cause of your flat feet, Dr. Giagnacova devises a treatment plan geared towards supporting your arches, relieving pain, enhancing mobility, and preventing complications.
Treatments for flat feet include:
In more severe cases, Dr. Giagnacova might recommend surgery to correct bone abnormalities and repair damaged ligaments and tendons. He performs surgery to replace or lengthen tendons, stretch or tighten ligaments, and fuse or remove bones as needed to help your arch.
Pain from flat feet can ripple throughout your body and even radiate to your lower back. For expert help, call Next Step Foot & Ankle in Philadelphia or use online booking to schedule an appointment today.