Heel Bone Fractures

Heel Fracture Specialists in Kansas City

What are Heel Bone Fractures?

Heel bone fractures are medically referred to as a calcaneus fracture, or a fracture of the heel bone or calcaneus. This is one of the largest bones in the foot responsible for weight-bearing, balance, and walking. Heel bone fractures are painful and potentially debilitating injuries. Heel bone fractures can be caused by falls, high-impact accidents, and sports injuries.

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Symptoms of Heel Bone Fractures

Below are the most common symptoms of Heel Bone Fractures:

  • Severe heel pain is made worse by any attempt to put weight on the foot.
  • Reduced mobility of the ankle and foot due to pain and swelling.
  • Difficulty putting weight on the injured foot, may result in a limp
  • Swelling and bruising of the heel with noticeable bruising around the injured area
  • In some cases, the heel may seem deformed or out of alignment due to the swelling

Heel Bone Fracture Treatment

Treatment for heel bone fractures depends on the severity of the injury. Many patients respond to non-surgical intervention. Surgery may be necessary for more complex heel fractures. Some non-surgical treatments are:

  • Immobilization with a cast or walking boot. Patients are advised not to put any weight on the fractured foot during this time.
  • Use of crutches, a walker, or a cane.
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers like NSAIDS.
  • Physical therapy after the boot or cast is removed.

Surgical treatment of heel fractures includes:

  • Open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) to realign the fractured bones and secure them with screws, plates, or wires. Patients who need heel fracture surgery generally have a very complex fracture.

Heel Bone Fractures Surgery Recovery

Recovery from heel bone surgery or ORIF involves immobilization of the foot in a walking boot, cast, or splint. You may be referred to physical therapy while still wearing your immobilization device to work up to slowly being able to bear weight on the affected foot. This timeline depends on the seriousness of your injury.

How to Prevent Heel Bone Fractures

The best way to prevent a heel bone fracture is to minimize the risk of accidents and injuries.

  • Wear activity-appropriate footwear with good arch support and cushioning to reduce the risk of stress fractures.
  • Take precautions to prevent falls by keeping walkways clear and using handrails on stairs or steep areas.
  • Reduce the risk of overuse injuries that lead to heel fractures by using proper technique when engaging in sports or working out.
  • Exercise regularly to improve strength and balance. Make sure to wear the appropriate footwear.

Heel bone fractures can be painful and impact your mobility and quality of life. Seek prompt medical treatment to ensure you recover fully from a heel bone fracture. Follow your healthcare provider’s recommendations, and you’ll be on your way to a full recovery.

Heel Bone Fractures Care in Kansas City

If you have any of the above symptoms, call Orthopedic Health of Kansas City to schedule an appointment with one of our foot specialists in Kansas City. We will make sure you get back on your feet and back to enjoying the things you love. We serve patients from Kansas City, MO, Lenexa, KS, and Independence, MO.