Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has lots of amateur football players and other athletes asking themselves this question after he was sidelined earlier this season due to a Lisfranc injury. At Texas Foot Specialists, we want to share some information about Lisfranc injuries and the necessity to get all sports injuries evaluated promptly.
Lisfranc injuries can bring on a number of different symptoms including pain in the midfoot area—especially when standing, swelling, bruising or blistering on the arch or top of the foot and abnormal widening of the foot. In the case of a severe injury, it may be difficult to bear weight on the foot.
Where’s the Pain Coming From?
The Lisfranc joint is located in the midfoot where the metatarsal bones meet up with the arch bones. There is also a strong band of tissue called the Lisfranc ligament that joins two of the bones and helps maintain the strength and proper alignment of the joint. A Lisfranc injury can occur in three ways (and sometimes more than one happens at the same time):
Sprains—the Lisfranc and other ligaments on the bottom of the foot can be overstretched or sprained through a twisting injury, causing instability in the joint in the middle of the foot.
Fractures—a bone in the Lisfranc joint can break or there can be an avulsion fracture—a small piece of bone gets pulled off.
Dislocations—the bones of the Lisfranc joint can get forced out of their normal position.
These types of injuries are most commonly seen in football players and athletes that play other contact sports, horseback riders, runners and automobile accident victims. It is also possible to cause an injury to the Lisfranc through direct force to the foot such as a heavy object falling on the foot.
Seek Evaluation and Treatment Early
Lisfranc injuries are sometimes mistaken for ankle sprains. It’s important if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms after an injury that you contact our Sugar Land (281-242-4448), Pasadena (281-991-0600) and Houston (713-664-6677) offices. The sooner our podiatrists Dr. Bruce Miller or Dr. Gregory Mangum diagnose the source of your foot discomfort, the sooner you can start the correct rehabilitation to get you back in the game.