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Over-the-Counter Foot Remedies - Article
ABSTRACT: Several effective and inexpensive over-the-counter treatments are available for minor but troubling foot problems. In most cases, one week of therapy with topical terbinafine is effective for interdigital tinea pedis. Treatment of plantar warts with 17 percent salicylic acid with lactic acid in a collodion base is as effective as cryotherapy, but treatment must be sustained for several months. Toe sleeves and toe spacers can relieve pain from hard or soft corns. Metatarsal pads can relieve the pressure associated with plantar keratoses. Heel cups often can relieve pain caused by age-related thinning of the heel fat pad. Plantar fasciitis is a common cause of anteromedial heel pain caused by repetitive strain on the plantar fascia. Although the mainstay of therapy is stretching exercises, ready-made arch supports and insoles can be helpful adjuncts.
ABSTRACT: Patients with metatarsal fractures often present to primary care settings. Initial evaluation should focus on identifying any conditions that require emergent referral, such as neurovascular compromise and open fractures. The fracture should then be characterized and treatment initiated. Referral is generally indicated for intra-articular or displaced metatarsal fractures, as well as most fractures that involve the first metatarsal or multiple metatarsals. If the midfoot is injured, care should be taken to evaluate the Lisfranc ligament. Injuries to this ligament require referral or specific treatment based on severity. Nondisplaced fractures of the metatarsal shaft usually require only a soft dressing followed by a firm, supportive shoe and progressive weight bearing. Stress fractures of the first to fourth metatarsal shafts typically heal well with rest alone and usually do not require immobilization. Avulsion fractures of the proximal fifth metatarsal tuberosity can usually be managed with a soft dressing. Proximal fifth metatarsal fractures that are distal to the tuberosity have a poorer prognosis. Radiographs should be carefully examined to distinguish these fractures from tuberosity fractures. Treatment of fractures distal to the tuberosity should be individualized based on the characteristics of the fracture and patient preference. Nondisplaced fractures of the proximal portion of metatarsals 1 through 4 can be managed acutely with a posterior splint followed by a molded, non-weight-bearing, short leg cast. If radiography reveals a normal position seven to 10 days after injury, progressive weight bearing may be started, and the cast may be removed three to four weeks later.
ABSTRACT: Fractures of the proximal portion of the fifth metatarsal may be classified as avulsions of the tuberosity or fractures of the shaft within 1.5 cm of the tuberosity. Tuberosity avulsion fractures cause pain and tenderness at the base of the fifth metatarsal and follow forced inversion during plantar flexion of the foot and ankle. Local bruising, swelling and other injuries may be present. Nondisplaced tuberosity fractures are usually treated conservatively, but orthopedic referral is indicated for fractures that are comminuted or displaced, fractures that involve more than 30 percent of the cubo-metatarsal articulation surface and fractures with delayed union. Management and prognosis of both acute (Jones fracture) and stress fracture of the fifth metatarsal within 1.5 cm of the tuberosity depend on the type of fracture, based on Torg's classification. Type I fractures are generally treated conservatively with a nonweight-bearing short leg cast for six to eight weeks. Type II fractures may also be treated conservatively or may be managed surgically, depending on patient preference and other factors. All displaced fractures and type III fractures should be managed surgically. Although most fractures of the proximal portion of the fifth metatarsal respond well to appropriate management, delayed union, muscle atrophy and chronic pain may be long-term complications.