Health Library

The Health Library is a collection of health and wellness resources created for learning and accessibility. Select a topic below for related health information or search for a topic in the search bar for more information on other medical conditions.

Podiatry

  • A fifth metatarsal Jones fracture is a break or a thin, hairline crack in the long bone on the outside of the foot. A Jones fracture occurs near the end of this bone that is closest to the ankle. A Jones fracture can happen when a person jumps or...

  • Learn how to take care of your cast or splint at home.

  • Guides through the decision to have surgery for plantar fasciitis to relieve foot and heel pain. Covers alternative treatments, including stretching exercises and orthotics. Discusses risks. Includes interactive tool to help you make your decision.

  • The following tips on good footwear may prevent toe, foot, or ankle problems or injuries. Have your feet measured regularly. The size of your feet may change as you grow older. Have both feet measured. Often one foot is larger than the other. The shoes should be fitted to the larger foot. Don't...

  • If your feet require specially designed shoes, ask your insurance plan about covering the cost of the shoes. Medicare will cover foot exams and special (orthotic) shoes or shoe inserts. Some medical supply shops specialize in designing custom-fitted...

  • Normal changes occur in your feet as you age. Feet tend to spread, possibly causing shoe size to change. Have your feet measured each time you buy shoes. Do not assume that your shoe size has not changed. The bottoms of the feet lose the fatty pads...

  • Guides through decision to have surgery for hammer, claw, or mallet toe. Includes symptoms of hammer, claw and mallet toe and describes nonsurgical treatment. Covers benefits and risks. Includes an interactive tool to help you make your decision.

  • Tips to prevent foot cramps include the following: Take a warm bath and do some stretching exercises before you go to bed if cramps wake you at night. Avoid pointing your toes while you stretch. Try not to sleep with your toes pointed. Keep your...

  • Discusses common toe, foot, and ankle injuries. Covers home treatment and basic foot care. Offers injury prevention tips.

  • Discusses open surgery and endoscopic surgery to help relieve foot and heel pain from plantar fasciitis. Describes how it is done and what to expect after surgery. Covers how well it works and the risks.

  • Covers plantar fasciitis, a common cause of heel pain. Discusses causes, including flat feet or tight Achilles tendon. Covers treatment to relieve pain and improve strength and flexibility. Discusses what increases your risk and offers prevention tips.

  • Discusses causes and symptoms of hammer, claw, and mallet toes. Covers diagnosis (including specific tests and exams). Looks at treatment options, including surgery. Also offers home treatment tips.

  • Many foot problems—such as bunions, calluses and corns, or hammer, claw, or mallet toes—will not become severely painful or disabling if you wear shoes with a wide toe box that gives your toes and the ball of your foot more room. Try to wear shoes that: Have low heels. Avoid high-heeled, narrow, or...

  • Bunion surgery generally involves an incision in the top or side of the big toe joint and the removal or realignment of soft tissue and bone. This is done to relieve pain and restore normal alignment to the joint. Small wires, screws, or plates may be used to hold the bones in place. There are no guarantees that a...

  • What is a bunion? A bunion is an enlargement of bone or tissue around the joint at the base of the big toe. The big toe may turn toward the second toe. The tissues around the joint may be swollen and tender. A bony bump at the base of the little toe is called a bunionette or tailor's bunion. The little toe also...

  • Helps you check symptoms of leg injuries caused during sports or recreational activities, work-related tasks, and work or projects around home. Includes bruises, swelling, sprains, pulled muscles, and broken bones. Discusses treatment and prevention.

  • Helps you check symptoms of leg problems not caused by injury. Covers symptoms like pain, swelling, cramps, numbness, tingling, weakness, and lumps and bumps under the skin. Includes pictures of bones of lower leg, thigh, and muscles and tendons.

  • Footwear plays a large role in the development of foot and toe problems such as bunions, calluses and corns, and hammer, claw, and mallet toes. Shoes that don't fit properly make these conditions worse and more painful. But wearing the right shoes may help keep foot problems from becoming worse. A comfortable...

  • Orthotic shoe devices are molded pieces of rubber, leather, metal, plastic, or other synthetic material that are inserted into a shoe. They balance the foot in a neutral position and cushion the foot from too much pounding. A wide range of orthotics are available for different foot problems. Doctors do not always agree...

  • An injury to the Achilles tendon ( Achilles tendinopathy) can cause pain and stiffness on and above the back of the heel. Achilles tendinopathy is common among athletes. But it also occurs in people of all ages, activity levels, and jobs. Bursitis can also cause pain and swelling at the back or bottom of the heel. To...

  • Discusses common Achilles tendon problems. Covers tendinopathy, which includes tendinitis and tendinosis. Also covers tendon tear or rupture, paratenonitis, peritendinitis, and bursitis. Discusses symptoms such as pain and swelling in back of leg or heel.

  • There are two types of surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon: In open surgery, the surgeon makes a single large incision in the back of the leg. In percutaneous surgery, the surgeon makes several small incisions rather than one large incision. In both types of surgery, the surgeon sews the tendon back...

  • Rehabilitation (rehab) and/or physical therapy are the usual treatment for an Achilles tendon injury. For Achilles tendinopathy, physical therapy can decrease your pain. It can allow you to gradually return to your normal activities. For an Achilles tendon rupture, you can try a rehab program after surgery to repair the...

  • Discusses exercises to stretch and strengthen the plantar fascia ligament and Achilles tendon. Has illustrations of exercises. Covers exercises to avoid. Offers other tips like resting or icing to help relieve heel pain.

  • Surgeons often use phalangeal head resection to correct hammer, claw, and mallet toes. In this procedure, the surgeon removes part of one of the toe bones, the phalangeal head, so that the toe can lie flat. The affected tendons are cut and then reattached to conform to the new, correct toe position. A wire or tape holds...

  • Guides through decision to have bunion surgery. Provides general overview of what bunions are. Looks at types of surgery, possible complications, and effectiveness. Includes interactive tool to help you decide.

  • Guides through decision to have surgery for an Achilles tendon rupture. Describes different types of treatment and when surgery is the best option. Covers benefits and risks. Includes an interactive tool to help you make your decision.

  • Plantar fasciitis in athletes is often the result of overtraining. You will need to reduce your level of activity. Or you will need to switch to another type of activity that puts less stress on your feet. This, combined with stretching, anti-inflammatory drugs, and making sure that you have good-quality shoes, will...

  • What is Morton's neuroma, and what causes it? Morton's neuroma is a swollen or thickened nerve in the ball of your foot. When your toes are squeezed together too often and for too long, the nerve that runs between your toes can swell and get thicker. This swelling can make it painful when you walk on that foot...

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