Foot and Ankle Treatment

Our experienced, fellowship-trained specialists are dedicated to helping you regain mobility, alleviate pain and get back to the activities you love. Trust us for care and personalized treatment plans tailored to your needs.

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Assessing Foot and Ankle Injuries

Your Riverside orthopedic surgeon can determine the extent of the damage to your foot or ankle and to guide you in what type of treatments would be the most effective.

To make an appointment with one of our specialists, please call one of our conveniently located offices:
• Peninsula/Williamsburg: 757-534-9988
• Gloucester: 804-693-0529
• Eastern Shore: 757-302-2700

Have you ever experienced Hammer Toe?


Dr. Jeffrey Levy, a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon in foot and ankle surgery, outlines the condition known as Lesser Toe Deformities. He explains exactly what this condition is and the minimally invasive procedure he’s specially trained to perform in order to remedy it.


Understanding Foot and Ankle Pain

Foot and ankle pain can be caused by a variety of factors, ranging from injuries to underlying medical conditions. Understanding the causes of foot and ankle pain is crucial to effectively diagnose and treat the issue. Injuries such as sprains, fractures or strains are common culprits of foot and ankle pain.

In this section, we will explore a comprehensive list of common foot and ankle symptoms. The foot and ankle are complex structures that play a crucial role in our daily activities. Understanding the various symptoms associated with these areas can help individuals identify potential issues and seek appropriate medical attention. It is important to note that this list is not exhaustive, and each symptom can have multiple potential causes. If you experience any persistent or severe foot and ankle symptoms, it is recommended to consult a health care professional for accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.


  1. Pain: Foot and ankle pain can occur due to various reasons such as sprains, fractures, tendonitis or arthritis. The intensity and location of the pain can vary depending on the underlying cause.

  2. Swelling: Swelling in the foot or ankle area may be a result of an injury, inflammation or underlying medical conditions like edema or lymphedema

  3. Stiffness: Difficulty in moving the foot or ankle joint freely can indicate joint stiffness caused by conditions like arthritis or overuse injuries.

  4. Instability: Feeling unsteady while walking or standing can be a sign of weakened ligaments or unstable joints in the foot and ankle.

  5. Numbness or tingling: Sensations of numbness or tingling in the foot and ankle region may be indicative of nerve compression, such as in cases of peripheral neuropathy or nerve entrapment syndromes.

  6. Redness and warmth: Inflammation due to infections, gout, cellulitis or other inflammatory conditions may lead to redness and warmth around the affected area.

  7. Limited range of motion: Difficulty moving the foot up/downwards (dorsiflexion/plantarflexion) or sideways (inversion/eversion) could suggest joint restrictions caused by injuries or degenerative conditions like osteoarthritis.

  8. Deformities: Foot deformities like bunions, hammertoes, flat feet (pes planus), high arches (pes cavus), clubfoot (congenital talipes equinovarus), etc., can cause discomfort and affect mobility.

  9. Weakness: Muscle weakness in the foot and ankle can result from nerve damage, neuromuscular disorders or prolonged immobilization.

Foot and ankle pain can be caused by a variety of factors, ranging from injuries to underlying medical conditions. Understanding the causes of foot and ankle pain is crucial to effectively diagnose and treat the issues. Injuries such as sprains, fractures or strains are common culprits of foot and ankle pain.

  1. Arthritis: Arthritis is a joint disease that can affect the foot, ankle and big toe. Symptoms include pain, swelling and stiffness. If left untreated, arthritis may cause permanent joint damage.

  2. Flat feet: Flat feet occurs when arches don't develop in childhood, after an injury or from the everyday stresses of being on your feet. If you have flat feet, your entire foot touches the ground when you stand. Flat feet can change the alignment of your legs and may cause problems with pain in your ankles and legs. Developing flat feet as an adult is one of the most common problems affecting the foot. There are many treatments available, from nonsurgical methods, such as orthotics and braces, to surgery.

  3. Bunions (Hallux Valgus): A bunion is an enlarged 'big toe' joint that develops from direct irritation and movement patterns. As a result, the bones that form the joint move out of alignment, and the joint becomes swollen and red. Bunions cause pain, difficulty walking and trouble finding shoes that fit. Surgery isn't always required for bunions. In many cases, wearing wider shoes with adequate toe room can alleviate pain from bunions. Other treatments that take pressure off the big toe can also help.

  4. Hammer toe: Hammer toe occurs when the toe's middle joint is bent, and the toe resembles a hammer. It most commonly happens in the second, third and fourth toe, contributing to pain, difficulty walking, and corns or calluses on the affected toe.

  5. Metatarsalgia: Metatarsalgia is pain and inflammation on the ball of the foot. It is usually related to how a person walks, foot anatomy and abnormalities in the foot or ankle. For example, athletes, people with high arches, and those with bunions or hammertoes are more likely to develop metatarsalgia.

  6. Ankle instability: This chronic condition stems from damage to the ligaments that hold the ankle joint in place. The instability causes the outer side of the ankle to slip. It usually results from repeated ankle sprains. Ankle instability occurs during movement but can also occur while standing. You may experience pain, swelling and discomfort with ankle instability.

  7. Cartilage injury (Osteochondral injury): An osteochondral injury is an area of abnormal or damaged cartilage and bone on the top of the lower bone of the ankle joint.

  8. Ankle and foot fractures: Fractures are one or more broken bones in the foot or ankle. Complete fractures are sudden bone breaks that happen with impact, while stress fractures are micro-breaks more likely from overuse. Complete fractures typically result in significant pain and swelling, whereas stress fractures result in dull nagging pain and discomfort.

  9. Achilles tendon tear and tendinitis: The Achilles tendon is the largest in your body and attaches your calf to your heel bone. While it is usually a strong tendon, it can become irritated or even rupture under extreme stress. It may be able to heal with rest, but many people need surgery to correct this problem.

  10. Plantar fasciitis (heel pain): Plantar fasciitis is heel pain resulting from inflammation of the plantar fascia ligament that sits on the bottom of the foot. Inflammation can result from stress or injury to the ligament.

  11. Morton's Neuroma: Thickening of tissue around a nerve in the ball of the foot, causing sharp pain or numbness.



For many foot and ankle conditions, non-surgical treatments are all that are needed. Non-surgical treatment options include:

1. Orthotics. Custom-made or store-brand shoe inserts, supports and padding can alleviate pain by cushioning or removing pressure from parts of the foot

2. At home, self-care of your injury

3. Over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications to reduce swelling

4. A brace or a cane

5. Physical therapy

6. Weight control or nutritional supplements

7. Injections such as a steroid medication injected into the joint

Depending on your condition, your doctor may recommend a variety of non-surgical treatments to alleviate your pain.

When it comes to foot and ankle treatment, there are various options available to address different conditions and injuries. It is important to consult with a health care professional specializing in orthopedics for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan based on individual needs and specific foot and ankle conditions. Here is a comprehensive list of surgical treatments for foot and ankle-related issues:

Common foot and ankle surgeries:

  1. Bunion correction: The goal of bunion correction is to realign the joint at the base of the big toe, relieve pain and repair the bones. Your surgeon may make small cuts to realign the bone, tendons and ligaments properly. In some cases, screws or plates will reinforce the changes made by the surgeon. Bunion surgery is an outpatient procedure that can be done in less than an hour. Then with help from your doctor, a physical therapist, exercises and the right footwear, you can return to normal activities in a few months.

  2. Hammer toe correction: Hammer toe surgery depends on the severity of the condition. Often minimally invasive surgery can correct the hammer toe with quicker results and less pain. If that is not possible there are options to transfer tendons or fuse joints of the toe to help straighten them. A small pin or wire secures the bones as they heal together.

  3. Total ankle replacement: During total ankle replacement or ankle arthroplasty, your surgeon removes the damaged joint and replaces it with an artificial joint (prosthetic implant). The new ankle joint allows the foot to move and pivot, relieving pain and helping you regain unrestricted movement.

  4. Flat foot reconstruction: Flat foot reconstruction surgery restores the foot's arch, improves alignment and reduces pain. Your surgeon will perform several procedures to repair the bones, ligaments and tendons that create a proper arch. This procedure may involve cutting bone, lengthening or transferring soft tissues like tendons and ligaments and fusing joints.

  5. Great toe arthritis correction: Treatment for arthritis of the big toe (hallux rigidus) varies based on the severity of the arthritis. In mild to moderate arthritis, your surgeon can remove some bone or the bone spur on top of the big toe (cheilectomy) to relieve your pain.

    For severe joint damage, bone fusion may help. During a bone fusion procedure, your surgeon removes damaged cartilage, and the two bones are rejoined and reinforced with screws to grow together.

  6. Ankle Arthroscopy: Ankle arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure where an orthopedic surgeon uses a small camera to diagnose and repair ankle problems. Small incisions allow the surgeon to insert a camera, repair tissues in and around the ankle and remove any damaged tissues. Most people undergoing ankle arthroscopy will experience less pain and greater mobility after the procedure.

  7. Cartilage restoration: Cartilage damage makes even basic everyday movements painful. A variety of procedures can treat cartilage injury. Your doctor may recommend:
    • Scope debridement: removing damaged cartilage
    • Grafting: replacing damaged cartilage with healthy cartilage from another part of the body
    • Microfracture: making tiny holes to stimulate new growth
    Depending on the joint and extent of damage, you may require one or more of these procedures to restore your cartilage.

  8. Midfoot fusion for arthritis: Midfoot fusion removes damaged tissue, realigns bones and secures them together while they heal so they can grow together. Orthopedic surgeons use metal plates and screws to keep the bones in place. This procedure reduces pain and improves mobility.

  9. Achilles tendon repair: The Achilles tendon is the largest in your body. It connects the calf muscle to your heel. Repairing the tendon will vary based on the severity of your injury and may include traditional or minimally invasive surgery. During the procedure, your surgeon makes an incision to remove the damaged tissue and repair the tendon.

  10. Ankle and foot fracture repair: The goal of surgery for a fractured foot or ankle is to realign and secure the bones and to remove or repair any damaged soft tissues. Screws or plates may secure bones in place while they heal. After repairing a broken foot or ankle, you'll use rest and elevation to ensure proper healing over several months.
Portrait of a diverse team of doctors working together in a medical institution
Riverside Orthopedic & Sports Medicine Specialists team

Meet our Orthopedic Providers

Providing efficient and effective care for any specialized orthopedic need

Your Orthopedic Team

Dr. Jeffrey Levy discusses the nature of Achilles tendonitis and solutions

- Jeffrey Aaron Levy, DO

Dr. Jeffrey Levy discusses Total Ankle Arthroplasty

- Jeffrey Aaron Levy, DO

Dr. Levy Explains Ligament Reconstruction for an Ankle Sprain

- Jeffrey Aaron Levy, DO

Meet Dr. Levy

- Jeffrey Aaron Levy, DO

Dr. Jeffrey Levy speaks on Minimally Invasive Bunion Surgery

- Jeffrey Aaron Levy, DO

Total Ankle Replacement: Jane’s Story

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