Hip, Knee, Ankle And Foot Pain Treatment

Hip Pain

The hip joint is a large ball and socket joint designed to bear large loads and yet provide flexibility and stability. Between the leg bone (femur) and the pelvic socket (acetabulum) is cartilage that makes the two bones glide over one another with very little friction.

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How did l get hip pain?

There are many causes of hip pain but the biggest category by far is due to “wear and tear” related problems. Where the problem is one or more of the following interrelated signs and symptoms

  • Osteoarthritis; As the cartilage barrier thins out the bone can wear and symptoms of arthritis start to develop
  • Bursitis; Sack’s of fluid protect the muscles and tendons from wearing out as they rub over bone. These can become inflammed and tender
  • Tendonitis; Overuse of tendons that traverse the hip joint

Less common problems of the hip include

  • Avascular necrosis; often from previous femur injury or long-term use of cortisone or alcohol
  • Labral tears; a tear of a ring of cartilage on the socket that helps keep the femur in the right position
  • Neck of femur fracture; very possible in a fall with an elderly person
  • Cancer

How can hip pain present?

Pain location can be quite varied and include;

  • Thigh
  • Inside leg joint
  • Groin
  • Outside your hip joint
  • Buttocks

Hip pain can refer to the knee and alternatively knee pain pain can refer to the hip. Even back problems can refer to the hip.

Before your hip pain gets worse we recommend a chiropractic evaluation to diagnose the problem and determine a course of action

Hip

Knee Pain

The knee is not as simple as many think. Its action is quite a bit more complex than first thought with four bones, femur, tibula, fibula and patella all moving in a dynamic way.

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How did l get knee pain?

In the young the most common reason for knee pain is trauma from an activity such as sport. The injury may concern the ligaments or cartilage of the knee in particular. In the young there are a number of other more serious causes for knee pain and while not common they need to be ruled out before any course of care.

In the older person the more likely concern with a knee joint is an osteoarthritic knee condition due to long term wear and tear or due to an injury many years ago that disturbed the joint and its mechanics many years ago.

It is important to note that knee pain may be referred from the back, hip or ankle.

Knee

How can knee pain present?

Depending on the type of injury the knee pain that persists needs examination. Most conditions without fracture or infection will respond to appropriate mobilization, inflammation management, rest and exercise.

The history and examination are most important and direct the chiropractic evaluation towards a series of orthopaedic tests to challenge the knee and establish if the problem is structural, functional or both. Radiological studies may be used to eliminate or confirm the cause of pain.

Common causes of knee pain we treat include;

  • Ligament damage
  • Meniscal (sometimes called cartilage) damage
  • Wear and tear damage in older patients
  • Tracking problems where knee mechanics are faulty

Ankle Pain

At some stage of life most people will have an experience of ankle pain. It’s an awkward pain since it is often treated as trivial yet those who suffer it understand the impact it has on your life. We don’t realize how much we move around until every step becomes painful.

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How did l get ankle pain?

Like all joints there are a number of ways to develop pain in a joint. Some of the the most common ways are;

  • Trauma leading to ligament damage, instability and movement alteration
  • Trauma leading to joint surface damage, particularly to the articular cartilage setting up long term arthritic problems
  • Trauma causing various degrees of boney damage from relatively minor avulsion fractures through to very serious major bone fracture and possibly dislocation
  • Poor ankle mechanics from foot problems or previous joint trauma leading to abnormal and uneven joint loads. Flat feet is a common cause for example.
  • Immune system problems such as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus and Scleroderma
  • Wear and tear leading to Osteoarthritis
  • Systemic imbalances such as gout
  • Infections that lead to cellulitis are common in the ankle
  • Tendons around the ankle can be a problem, in particular the achilles tendon

How can ankle pain present?

Any ankle pain will be exacerbated by loading and movement. The history is important to direct the consultation. Does the joint appear swollen (inflammation), was trauma involved (damage to ligaments, tendons and bones), is it angry and red (inflammation and infection), can you not let a bedsheet lie on it (cellulitis and gout) or has it been getting worse for years (osteoarthritis).

There are many factors to consider and your chiropractor is well trained to find the cause and plot a course of action to get you the solution you seek.

Foot Pain

Foot pain is often a source of pain that is ignored for too long until it becomes very debilitating and creating significant disruption to your activities of daily living. As any sufferer will tell you it can seriously impact the comfort of your day and prevent you from going about your regular business.

The foot is very complex structure containing 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments. They combine to form an amazing part of our body that can absorb and develop loads, stand all day, walk all day, move quick or slow, jump or dance. Yet most of us know very little about it until it hurts and then we wonder why.

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Foot

How did l get foot pain?

Foot pain can be caused by trauma, infections and disease but by far the most common is a change in foot mechanics that progressively overloads its structures leading to the potential for all kinds of problems including;

  • Achilles tendonitis
  • Plantar fasciitis and heel spurs
  • Bursitis
  • Osteoarthritis of multiple joints
  • Bunion deformity and hammertoes
  • Stress fractures
  • Morton’s neuroma

Poorly fitting shoes and high heels are thought to be a risk factor for development of foot pain. Diabetic problems are also a factor since one consequence of diabetes is damage to the nerves in the feet.

How can foot pain present?

There can be dozens of reasons for foot pain. Some of the common presentations are;

  • Pain around the heel and with movement (achilles tendon)
  • Pain as soon as you get out of bed on the instep of your foot (plantar fasciitis)
  • Pain on the outside of your foot (ligament damage or bone fracture)
  • Pain on the ball of the foot (bunion, stress fracture, neuroma)
  • Pain all day, worse in the morning and evening (osteoarthritis)

Your chiropractor is well trained to listen to you and examine your foot to make an evaluation of the cause and develop a course of action to get you back to where you want to be.

How Chiropractic and Myotherapy can help you

  1. Examination

    The first and most important step is to evaluate if we can help you. We are well trained to conduct a thorough history followed by an orthopaedic, neurological and physical examination.

    If you have any imagery studies already performed these are valuable. If you don’t these may be requested if the history and examination deems this important to your case.

  2. Provide a diagnosis

    At the end of our examination we will be able to provide you with an accurate diagnosis of what the problem is.

  3. Plan a Course of Action

    If after the examination we determine that we can help you we will plan a Course of Action to get you back to where you want to be. We will be able to give you

    a) A timeline of how long the process will take
    b) The techniques we recommend
    c) What you need to modify at home and work
    d) Give you any necessary exercises and advice that assist recovery

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