Dr. Theall's Blog

Posts for category: sports injury

By Bruce Theall, DPM (Gentle Touch)
March 02, 2020
Category: sports injury

Are you ready for the spring sports season? It’s an exciting time for both fans and athletes, but it can also cause a bit of stress if you’re unprepared. For parents, this means new gear, including shoes. For adults, taking the time to assess overall health is an important check-list item, too. Each season, the doctors at Gentle Touch Footcare see patients with sports injuries. Accidents happen while on the field or the court, but there are ways to prevent common conditions that lead to foot and ankle pain. 

My child is new to playing sports. Where do I start?

Children are constantly growing and developing, and this includes the many changes happening to their feet and ankles. Additionally, many childhood foot conditions go unnoticed or are easily dismissed as growing pains. Before signing your child up for a sport, it’s best to visit a podiatrist for an exam. This is a great time for parents to share any foot issues they have experienced, as some foot conditions are inherited.

My child already has a pair of running shoes. Is that OK?

Running shoes are great, but they don’t meet the demands of every sport. Each sport requires a different kind of shoe and wearing the wrong shoe can increase chances for an injury.

I still want to play sports, but my foot pain has increased during adulthood.

Pain is not something that you should ignore, even if you believe age brings on a few aches and pains. Staying active has many benefits, so schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to learn more about the cause of your pain. You may have an injury that didn’t fully recover, undiagnosed diabetes or a form of arthritis. Custom orthotics can help.

From youth to seniors, playing sports has great benefits. Make an appointment with our doctors, Bruce Theall, DPM, and Priscilla Seshie, DPM; let our team help you perform your best during this season. Call us today at 973-673-3668. Our office is located at 310 Central Avenue East, Orange, NJ, 07018.

There are a series of foot injuries that can develop from competing in sports and this is the time of year to be especially aware of them. With school back in session, sports like football, basketball, hockey, and field Hockey become regular parts of our and our children’s lives.

Various injuries include:

  • Shin splints – an inflammation of the shin area due to pounding on a hard surface
  • Turf toe – the inflammation of the big toe due to stress from artificial turf
  • Sprains – undue strain on the foot or ankle
  • Fractures – a breaking or cracking of the bone
  • Bunions – a bump on the outside of the big toe
  • Plantar fasciitis – an aggravation of the area that joins the toe bones with other foot bones
  • Heel spurs – a usually painful calcium deposit on the heel
  • Achilles tendonitis – the inflammation of the largest foot tendon, the Achilles tendon

It is very important to see your podiatrist as soon as possible. Your podiatrist may take an x-ray or ultrasound to locate the problem area.

Treatments may include:

  • Shin splints – R.I.C.E. rest, ice, compression, and elevation, change sports to one less physically stressful and anti-pain medications
  • Turf toe – RICE, pain medication, a foot cast or boot or surgery Sprains – RICE is usually applied as rest and ice will help a lot. You may need to use crutches or some other device to help take the weight off the sprained foot or ankle
  • Fractures – anti-pain medicine, cast or walking boot, RICE to allow the area to heal or surgery if the break is serious enough
  •  – change in footwear to something with more toe room, orthotics, lower heeled footwear or surgery to remove disjointed bone
  • Bunion – custom made orthotics, fitting footwear, anti-pain medication – acetaminophen or ibuprofen (use only as directed) or surgery
  • Plantar fasciitis – orthotics, pain medicines, steroid injections for pain,  therapy or surgery
  • Heel spurs – orthotics, RICE, cortisone injections, cushioned footwear or surgery
  • Achilles tendonitis – RICE, pain medicines, boot or cast to keep the tendon immobile to heal or surgery

If you believe you have or are developing any of the above or have any other concerns about your feet, make an appointment with us here at Gentle Touch Footcare. Our doctors Bruce Theall, DPM and Priscilla Seshie, DPM will diagnose your feet and treat them appropriately. Our offices are located at 310 Central Avenue East, Orange, NJ, 07018. Our phone number is 973-673-3668 and our website is www.drtheall.com

By Dr. Bruce Theall
December 09, 2015
Category: sports injury
Tags: Heel pain   plantar fasciitis   sports  

            Football players are notorious for injuries all over their bodies and the Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos is no different.  Recently, Peyton encountered a common sport injury against the Kansas City Chiefs, which lead to him leaving the game, a loss, and a partially torn plantar fascia.

                Team physicians have stated that Peyton Manning has been battling with plantar fasciitis for several weeks prior the tearing from last Sunday’s game.  Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia that is located on the bottom or plantar surface of your foot.  The function of the plantar fascia is to stabilize the arch which leads to a more stable foot.  Plantar fasciitis results when there is localized inflammation and degeneration of the fascia.   Plantar heel pain is one of the most common conditions occurring in 15% of all adults with foot ailments.  It typically presents after periods of rest or taking the first steps in the morning, referred to as post-static dyskinesia.  This sharp, stabbing localized “start-up pain” dissipates once weight-bearing occurs and by the end of the day there is instead a dull throbbing radiating pain into the arch and forefoot.  Most heel pain symptoms from plantar fasciitis are throbbing pain, sometimes mild numbness due to irritation of the surrounding nerves, tenderness upon weight-bearing (walking), and mild swelling. 

                Plantar fasciitis can be caused by several different mechanisms including increasing age, biomechanics (abnormal foot posture), elevated BMI (increased pressure and strain on the foot), a tight Achilles tendon, inappropriate footwear, type and intensity of daily activity (running results in more strain), and isolated or repetitive trauma.  Although these factors can be present in anyone, the conditions are usually observed in anyone at any age depending on their level of daily activity. 

                Peyton Manning was experiencing plantar fasciitis symptoms leading up the injury of partially tearing the plantar fascia, the actual tearing of the fascia presented to him with more excruciating pain in his left foot, so bad that he was able to participate in practice throwing perfectly, but could still feel the effects of the severe pain in his left foot.

            A podiatrist is the only person that is trained in a specialized field in medicine for anything concerning the lower extremity, foot and ankle, that’s why it is vital for you to visit your podiatrist if there are any problems concerning your feet.  If you or someone you know is experiencing any pains or problems in their feet, they should not hesitate to contact their local podiatrist or Dr. Theall for a full comprehensive evaluation.  If there are any other questions feel free to contact Dr. Theall’s Gentle Touch Foot Care office for all your foot and ankle needs and concerns at 973 673-3668.





By Dr. Bruce Theall
April 30, 2015
Category: sports injury

The 2015 NBA Playoffs are well underway, and there are always some kind of injuries considering the high impact sport has on the feet and ankles.  Mike Conley, point guard of the Memphis Grizzlies knows this better than anyone else.  He recently sprained his right ankle in a game against the New Orleans Pelicans and has been playing through the pain since.  Warmer weather is just around the corner, and everyone is going to be heading outdoors to enjoy the nicer weather.  For our sports fans out there, basketball season is here, but before we lace up our high tops, let’s take a second to remember our safety and proper footwear to help avoid injury.

The most common injury involved with basketball, as well as many other sports such as football, soccer, lacrosse, and baseball, is a lateral ankle (inversion) sprain.  More than 80% of all ankle injuries involve the lateral ankle resulting in the stretching or rupture of the ligaments that are around the ankle.   65% of chronic lateral ankle pain and instability is secondary to a previous ankle sprain.  Basketball is a high impact activity as well as fast paced, therefore, the athletes must be quick on their feet and be ready to change and shift positions faster than a blink of an eye.  Consequently, the number one risk factor for a lateral ankle sprain is a fast twisting motion to the ankle, which is true for those who have a history of a previous sprain.  Immediately following the ankle injury, aggressive rehabilitation featuring muscular strengthening and exercise is essential.  When conservative treatment fails, surgical repair of the ligaments is indicated.  Although ligamentous sprain and/or rupture is the most common with inversion injury, several other injuries are frequently encountered.  These include avulsion fracture of the fifth metatarsal base, Jones fracture, syndesmosis injury, calcaneal anterior process fracture, talar lateral process fracture, talar dome fracture, peroneal or flexor tendon injury and sural nerve damage.  

                Symptoms of an ankle sprain besides immediate pain and discomfort is also immediate swelling and bruising around the ankle in question of the injury.  Swelling should go down in a few days if there is a mild sprain, but for the more severe sprains, the swelling may persist for longer than normal.  Most ankle sprain injuries will be painful for the patient to walk on it and put weight on your foot, and your ankle may feel unstable.  Many athletes also recall hearing a ‘pop’ or ‘snap’ sound or actually feeling a tearing sensation at the time of the injury.  Other factors that can lead an ankle injury, are inappropriate shoe gear, excessive cushioning; shoe or surface, or even an irregular surface being your shoe.  You are recommended if the swelling does not go down and if the pain persists, to go to the podiatrist immediately, or closest emergency room.  Contact Dr. Theall’s Gentle Touch Footcare office at 973 – 673 – 3668, immediately if this occurs to you during your physical activity.

                Be sure to be safe when on the courts with lacing up your shoes correctly, hydrating with water on warmer days, and resting yourself at night while watching the 2015 NBA Playoffs after a good game. 

By Dr. Bruce Theall
November 03, 2014
Category: sports injury

Jon Beason, who plays linebacker for the New York Giants, has been hampered all season by an injury to a small  pea shaped bone on the bottom of his foot.  He broke and tore the ligaments around the bone in pre season workouts this past summer.

  This bone called a sesamoid bone acts as a pivot underneath the first  toe to help players push off when walking or running. Being that this bone  is under the base of the big toe, it is very sensitive when it is injured. This compromises and makes painful  normal walking for the average person.    However, for a pro sports players  this problem can limit their acceleration and jumping ability.  We see this injury frequently in the office and have a variety of ways to conservatively treat it to calm the pain down.  If you are having pain on the ball of your foot, be sure not to ignore it.  Surgery is sometimes indicated in the more advanced cases, especially in athletes, however the average person will generally do well with the simple treatments provided in our office. If you have experienced an injury and may be in need of treatment contact Gentle Touch Foot Care at 973 673-3668 to make your appointment.