The Patient’s Guide to Ankle Replacement

Your podiatric surgeon may recommend ankle replacement surgery if your ankle joint is severely damaged. Common causes of this kind of damage include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, infection, and fractures. After surgery, most patients experience significantly less pain and better mobility. If your podiatrist has recommended ankle surgery, here is what you need to know.

Ankle Replacement Candidates

Although only your podiatric surgeon can determine if ankle replacement is appropriate for you, most otherwise healthy people whose ankle pain has not been controlled by non-surgical treatments are candidates for this procedure. You must also have normal sensation elsewhere in your foot and have enough skin to adequately cover the ankle. Diabetes and infections can sometimes interfere with the procedure, so your surgeon will determine if ankle replacement is safe for you if you have these conditions.

Ankle Replacement Procedure

Before surgery, you will receive either general anesthesia or spinal anesthesia so you don’t feel pain. The surgeon will then remove the damaged joint via an incision in the front of the ankle and replace it with a new, artificial joint made of metal and plastic. When the joint is in place, the incision will be closed. Your surgeon may leave a drainage tube in place for one to two days after surgery to control swelling.

Ankle Replacement Recovery

After surgery, you will stay in the hospital for one to three days and receive pain medications. Most patients are able to put weight on their ankle after six weeks and then start physical therapy to speed up the healing process and rebuild ankle strength. You may need to wear a protective boot for up to 12 weeks.

If you’re experiencing chronic ankle pain, schedule an appointment at Family Foot Center to be evaluated by our podiatrist in Whitestone. Board-certified podiatrist Dr. Stanley Zawada provides treatment for a range of podiatric conditions. To make an appointment, please call (718) 767-5555.

2017-06-08T12:02:10+00:00 September 28th, 2015|

Do You Have a Bunion?

Bunions occur when the big toe moves inward towards the second toe, creating a protrusion along the outside of the joint. It is a very common problem seen in podiatry, but your foot doctor can provide treatment. This video explains more.

Bunions look like lumps in the area where the big toe connects to the base of the foot. They can cause pain, inflammation, and numbness that is often exacerbated by wearing shoes that put pressure on the affected area. Your podiatrist may suggest surgery if your bunion symptoms are interfering with your life.

If you think you could have a bunion, make an appointment at Family Foot Center with our foot doctor serving Whitestone for evaluation and treatment. To schedule your visit, call (718) 767-5555.

2017-06-08T12:02:29+00:00 September 21st, 2015|

Fibromyalgia and Your Feet

Foot pain is a common part of fibromyalgia. About half of all fibromyalgia patients experience it, and the lack of mobility associated with foot pain can exacerbate other symptoms. If you have fibromyalgia, make your foot doctor part of your treatment team. By managing foot pain, you can lead a more active life and help break the cycle of fibromyalgia fatigue and pain.

If you have foot pain, it can force you to compensate by walking differently. This can put unnatural pressure on your hips and lower back, which intensifies pain in those regions—which may themselves already be affected by your fibromyalgia. Furthermore, foot pain can interfere with your ability to be active, which leads to increased fatigue. Your foot doctor can diagnose the specific source of your pain and provide treatment, so you can be free to get more exercise to ease your symptoms.

If you have fibromyalgia in Whitestone, make an appointment at Family Foot Center to discuss your symptoms. With our care, you can improve your foot health and reduce your pain. To schedule a consultation, please call (718) 767-5555.

2017-06-08T12:03:03+00:00 September 14th, 2015|

Causes and Symptoms of Gout

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a build-up of uric acid. The big toes and ankles are commonly impacted, but it can affect joints throughout the body. If you think you could have gout, see your podiatrist as soon as possible. When gout is left untreated, it can cause irreversible joint and kidney damage. Here is a look at some of the causes and symptoms of this painful condition to help you take steps to minimize your risk and know when to call your foot doctor.


High levels of uric acid can occur when the body overproduces uric acid or when the kidneys do not eliminate enough uric acid via urine. When uric acid builds up, it eventually turns into sharp urate crystals that settle into the joints. These crystals cause inflammation, which in turn leads to gout. Several different factors can contribute to uric acid build-up, including being overweight or drinking too much alcohol. You are also more prone to developing gout if you have a family history of the disease or if you have kidney problems. Some medications, such as diuretics and niacin, also increase your risk.


Joint pain is the most common symptom of gout. It is usually very intense, especially in the first 12 to 24 hours after symptoms begin. The pain usually begins in one joint, but may eventually spread to others. Some people also experience redness and swelling in the area of the painful joint. Range of motion may be limited. As the joint heals, the skin around it may begin to peel.

Consider seeing your foot doctor serving Whitestone as soon as gout symptoms appear to minimize the risk of long-term damage. At Family Foot Center, we can quickly diagnose gout and begin treatment to help you get relief from your discomfort. For all of your podiatry needs, call us today at (718) 767-5555.

2017-06-08T12:03:22+00:00 September 8th, 2015|