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Dr George Dracopoulos
Dr George Dracopoulos


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Dr Jason Ward
Dr Jason Ward


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Foot & Ankle

This information has been designed to give you a basic understanding of your foot and ankle, the surgeries performed and what to expect during your hospitalisation. Please keep in mind that this is a guideline only and that each individual has different needs so you may progress at a different rate to that which is outlined.

Your Orthopaedics SA specialist will be happy to address any questions which might arise after reading this information.



Foot & Ankle Anatomy

The foot and ankle in the human body work together to provide balance, stability, movement, and propulsion.

This complex anatomy consists of:

  • 26 bones
  • 33 joints
  • Muscles
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Blood vessels, nerves, and soft tissue

In order to understand conditions that affect the foot and ankle, it is important to understand the normal anatomy of the foot and ankle.

Find out more about Foot & Ankle Anatomy with the following links.


Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot problem. It starts as a dull intermittent pain in the heel that may progress to a sharp persistent pain.

Classically, it is worse in the morning or after a period of rest when taking the first few steps. It may also be apparent when commencing a sporting activity.

Find out more about plantar fasciitis by using the following link.



Bunions are a very common problem. Generally they occur when the forefoot spreads and the big toe then deviates towards the other toes.

The prominent bone at the side of the big toe rubs against the shoe and the skin becomes reddened. Often a sac of fluid called a bursa may develop in the tissue overlying the prominent bone. This swelling, consisting of inflamed soft tissues and underlying prominent bone is what we call a ‘bunion’. If left untreated they can be very painful.

Dr George Dracopoulos now offers Minimally Invasive Bunion surgery for select patient cases. 

Find out more about Bunions and related surgery with the following links.



A neuroma is one of the commonest causes of pain in the ball of the foot. A neuroma is a swelling which develops on a nerve. Most commonly this occurs between the third and fourth toes but can also occur between the second and third toes.

Find out more about Neuroma with the following links.


Ankle Arthroscopy

Recent advances have permitted surgical procedures to be performed inside joints without opening the joints by traditional methods. Using a fibre-optic device called an arthroscope; orthopaedic surgeons are able to inspect the inside of a joint by direct vision. This can be done to make a diagnosis or carry out surgical procedures.

Find out more about Ankle Arthroscopy with the following links.


Ankle Block for Foot Surgery

Nearly all mid and forefoot surgery can be comfortably and reliably performed using local anaesthesia (ankle block). The benefits associated with using this technique include avoidance of a general anaesthetic with its associated side effects such as drowsiness, nausea and vomiting.

Find out more about Ankle Block for Foot Surgery with the following link.


Ankle Fracture

Ankle injuries are the most common sports-related injury. An ankle fracture is a break in one or more bones that make up the ankle joint. Sometimes ligaments may also be damaged.

Find out more about Ankle Fracture with the following links.


Achilles Tendon Rupture

Achilles tendon is a strong fibrous cord present behind the ankle that connects the calf muscles to heel bone. It is used when you walk, run and jump. When the Achilles tendon becomes thin, weak, or if it is not used, it may be susceptible to injury or damage.

Find out more about Achilles Tendon Rupture with the following links.


Ankle Sprain

A sprain is stretching or tearing of ligaments, which connect adjacent bones in a joint and provides stability to the joint. An ankle sprain is a common injury and occurs when you fall or suddenly twist the ankle joint or when you land your foot in an awkward position after a jump.

Find out more about Ankle Sprain with the following links.