Os tibiale navicular refers to an extra bone found in the foot. An accessory bone is a bone that is not normally found in the average human, but in most cases is not considered abnormal. This condition represents a secondary ossification center (growth center) of the navicular bone. It is present from birth. The navicular bone is found on the inside part of the foot.
Most of the time, this condition is asymptomatic and people may live their whole lives unaware that they even have this extra bone. The main reason the accessory navicular bone becomes problematic is when pain occurs. There is no need for intervention if there is no pain. The accessory navicular bone is easily felt in the medial arch because it forms a bony prominence there. Pain may occur if the accessory bone is overly large causing this bump on the instep to rub against footwear.
Many people with an accessory navicular How do you prevent Achilles tendonitis? not experience symptoms, however some may notice a bump and/or swelling on the inside of the foot just above the arch. They may also experience pain in the middle of the foot, particularly with physical activity.
Diagnosis is fairly simple based on an examination by your doctor. He or she will palpate the navicular bone, and based on the location of pain will suspect an accessory navicular. The doctor will also observe your gait to see if you are flatfooted. At this point an x-ray will make the definitive diagnosis. Other causes of pain in the same area of the foot would include a fracture of the navicular bone or possibly tendonitis or even a partial tear of the tibialis posterior tendon that inserts into the navicular. In these cases there is usually a history of trauma. People with a naturally "large" navicular bone may also develop a bursitis due to chronic shoe pressure.
Non Surgical Treatment
The treatment for a symptomatic accessory navicular can be divided into nonsurgical treatment and surgical treatment. In the vast majority of cases, treatment usually begins with nonsurgical measures such as orthotics, strappings or bracing. Surgery usually is only considered when all nonsurgical measures have failed to control your problem and the pain becomes intolerable.
For patients who have failed conservative care or who have had recurrent symptoms, surgery can be considered. Surgical intervention requires an excision of the accessory navicular and reattachment of the posterior tibial tendon to the navicular. Often times, this is the only procedure necessary. However, if there are other deformities such as a flat foot or forefoot that is abducted, other procedures may be required.
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