Lifewatch: Flat Foot - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

6.11.08

Lifewatch: Flat Foot

FLORIDA -- A condition known as "flat foot" causes foot pain that makes it hurt to walk.

But, there is a procedure to correct the condition so patients can slip into some summer sandals.

Music is a passion for Iberia Johnston, but the short walk to the piano became difficult.

"My foot if I put weight on it would just twist like this. I found myself losing my balance, and I fell a couple of times," said Johnston.

And falling puts even more stress on her body.

"I hurt -- my knees, my ankle, my hip my back. My husband always complained that I was walking at an angle," said Johnston.

Johnston hoped bulky, orthotic shoes would help, but it wasn't enough.

So, her doctor recommended surgery.

"If your tire is low -- when you drive you veer to one side -- well if one foot is too low your body tilts to one side you're not in alignment so your stressing your joints incorrectly," said Dr. Jeff Kopelman.

Dr. Kopelman fixed Johnston's problem with an implant surgery.

"What we're gonna do is put an implant right in here. This is what the implant looks like it's made of titanium," said Dr. Kopelman.

Although the procedure has been around for decades, Dr. Kopelman said the screw-like device has not.

"It s now quicker to put in - easier to put in and less chance of it moving out of place so its been a big improvement on the procedure," said Dr. Kopelman.

According to doctors, this works best for patients with strong bones, and whose ankle's turn inward.

Full recovery takes about six weeks.

 

Reported by Kristy Ondo

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