Surgeons Offer Tips to Avoid Flood & Storm Clean-up Foot Injuries

5/28/2015

CHICAGO - May 28, 2015 - With the most recent severe storms and flooding plaguing parts of the U.S., the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons (ACFAS) warn residents about protecting their feet from injuries among the devastation during clean-up.

After a storm has passed or flooding occurred, one of the first things residents want to do is clear away debris and return to their normal lives. What people don't always realize are the dangers still lying beneath the water and rubble that can cause serious injury to feet and ankles.

ACFAS suggests taking some simple precautions to protect feet from injury and help make the storm and flood clean up go more quickly and safely.

  • Watch where you walk. Debris and murky floodwaters can conceal sharp objects like nails and broken glass. Be careful standing on unstable surfaces and piles of debris that can throw you off balance, causing ankle sprains or fractures.
  • Wear appropriate shoe gear. Sturdy work boots are preferred. Avoid going barefoot or wearing open-toed footwear like sandals to prevent injury and puncture wounds.
  • Take precautions when cutting down tree limbs. Heavy tree limbs can fall with enough force to break bones in the feet and ankles.
  • Immediately treat cuts and puncture wounds. To help prevent infections, including bone infections, wash cuts and puncture wounds with clean water, apply a topical antibiotic, and a clean bandage. Puncture wounds require medical treatment within 24 hours to avoid infection and other complications from embedded contaminated, foreign objects. Foot and ankle surgeons can help treat puncture wounds and other traumatic injuries of the foot and ankle.

For more information on foot and ankle conditions, or to locate a foot and ankle surgeon in your community, visit FootHealthFacts.org, the patient education website of ACFAS.

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