I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Attorney. The calcaneus is a large, thick bone located at the back of the foot. Also called the “heel,” a fracture of this bone has the potential to be serious
What is a Calcaneus Fracture?
Medical professionals call the heel of the foot the calcaneus. This thick bone provides strength, support, and stability to the entirety of the foot, making a traumatic injury to this bone devastating for the rest of the foot. A bone fracture in the calcaneus is called a calcaneus fracture.
Mechanism of Injury
Because the calcaneus is such a thick bone, it requires a tremendous amount of force from an external source to fracture the heel. Most calcaneus fractures are seen with a fall from a great height or a pedestrian injury involving an auto versus a pedestrian event. Regardless, these are significant events and are required to fracture this bone.
Treatment of a Calcaneus Fracture
The treatment of this injury is going to start with imaging to establish a proper diagnosis. Modalities such as a CT scan or an MRI are going to be employed to ensure that any associated injuries are also established. Once the fracture has been diagnosed, the patient’s foot will have to be immobilized to allow the fracture to heal in a proper manner.
A calcaneus fracture can be accompanied by several different comorbidities that patients must be aware of. For example, a delay in diagnosis could lead to a patient walking on an injured heel for an extended period of time. This can lead to the development of severe blisters that could become infected and lead to osteomyelitis if neglected.
Structures at Risk
There are many other structures in the foot and leg that could also be damaged with a fracture of the calcaneus. Examples include the tibia and the fibula of the leg in addition to numerous other bones in the foot. If these areas are also fractured, the patient’s prognosis could be greatly altered.
There are several other injuries that should be considered with any fracture of the calcaneus. Examples include:
- Spinal cord injury
- Ankle fracture
- Tibia fracture
- Femur fracture
- Ankle sprain
- Fracture of the metatarsal
Most people have only slight fractures of their calcaneus which should heal without incident. Those that are accompanied by other complications do require a guarded prognosis.
Surgery is Possible
If a patient has injuries to other associated structures, it is likely that they will require surgery to achieve a full recovery. Anyone with a displaced or open fracture of the calcaneus will also need surgery.
Contact an Experienced Calcaneus Fracture Attorney
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Attorney. If you’ve been injured in a car accident due to the careless acts of a motorist, call me for free, friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 for (800) 404-5400.
I am happy to be a part of the California chapter of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. This select group of personal injury advocates remains among some of the most well-respected trial lawyers in the nation. Our forum’s members have both received verdicts and helped to settle cases worth over $1 Million dollars.
Some of the verdicts and settlements from my past can be found here.
Image Attribution: Found on Wikimedia Commons and reprinted with permission under the CC BY SA, version 3.0 License
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