Seattle Open Water Swim

Swim Across America – Seattle

“Welcome to the Swim Across America – Seattle Open Water Swim.
Volunteer, swim a 1/2 mile, 1 mile or 2 mile distance in beautiful Lake Washington to raise money that funds clinical trials and cancer research at the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Over the last 8 years we’ve raised nearly $2 million, which has been leveraged to obtain matching grants that would otherwise not have been obtained.”

Event Website

Come Say Hello! Our very own Dr. Wayne Weil will be coordinating the onsite medical & emergency coverage for this event.

Please feel free to participate in this neat event to raise money for clinical trials & cancer research.

A New Treatment Option for Big Toe Arthritis?

Hallux Rigidus

Big toe arthritis, also called 1st metatarsophalangeal (MTP) arthritis or hallux rigidus, is a common condition affecting the foot and ankle. It is the most common site for arthritis in the foot. Patients typically develop symptoms between age 30 and 60, and females are more commonly affected than men.

Presentation
Patients typically develop stiffness and decreased range of motion at the big toe, which affects walking, running, and other athletic activities. Some patients develop large bone spurs on the top of the foot, which can cause pain with shoe wear and discomfort when going up on the toes.

Causes
Sometimes trauma (a fracture or crush injury) can lead to this condition, but for most patients there is no specific inciting event. Some patients are more likely than others to develop big toe arthritis, either because of some anatomic abnormality or because of genetic predisposition.

Diagnosis
A clinical exam and x-rays can confirm the diagnosis. Generally, advanced imaging like MRI or CT scan is not required.

Treatment
Non-surgical options include anti-inflammatories, shoe wear modifications, and over-the-counter or custom inserts (orthotics). Physical therapy can be helpful to maintain range of motion. Occasionally cortisone injections into the joint can decrease inflammation for a period of time.

Surgery can be used to treat cases that fail non-operative treatment. Traditionally, a procedure called a cheilectomy can be used to remove bone spurs from the top of the big toe joint. This is recommended for mild to moderate cases of hallux rigidus. This is a joint-sparing procedure. Recovery involves walking in a surgical sandal for about 3-4 weeks after the surgery.

For moderate to severe arthritis, a fusion has until recently been the only proven surgical option. This is a joint-sacrificing procedure, in which the bones on either side of the joint are fused together with screws and possibly a plate.

This reliably addresses pain symptoms but eliminates all motion at the joint. Recovery involves a period of non- or heel- weight bearing followed by fully weight bearing in a surgical sandal for 8 weeks or more after the surgery.

Cartiva

A New Surgical Treatment Option

A new option is Cartiva, which can be an alternative to the aforementioned procedures. Cartiva is an organic polymer engineered to match the properties of human cartilage, which is what wears out as arthritis progresses. Your surgeon implants the polymer into the head of the 1st metatarsal, to act as a new joint surface. This is a joint-sparing procedure which retains, and in many cases increases, range of motion.

Recent literature shows greater than 90% patient satisfaction after 5 years of implantation. Recovery is similar to that of cheilectomy, and involves fully weight bearing in a surgical sandal for about 3-4 weeks after the surgery. If the procedure does not resolve pain, a fusion is still a surgical option for you.

Summary

Hallux rigidus is a common condition that involves pain, swelling, stiffness and decreased range of motion of the big toe. Diagnosis is often straightforward and involves a clinical examination and x-ray. Several non-operative treatments exist, including NSAIDs, shoe wear modifications, shoe inserts, and injections.

When non-operative treatment fails, surgery is an appropriate option. Cartiva may be an appropriate treatment option to avoid fusion of the big toe. Please see a qualified foot and ankle orthopedic surgeon if you believe you may be a candidate.

Mark Reed, MD is a fellowship-trained foot and ankle orthopedic surgeon who has undergone training on the Cartiva procedure and has incorporated it in his practice. Please contact OSS to schedule an appointment for an in-depth evaluation.

King5 Health Link

Advances in Hip Surgery Lead to Shorter Hospital Stays

Want to get back to the activities you love?

Watch Dr. Phil Downer’s Hip Segment on King5’s Health Link

Dr. Downer discusses items to address before considering surgery, the Anterior Hip Approach and the best activities to help maintain the health of your joint.

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“Total hip replacement has become one of the most common and successful procedures in the U.S.

Medical advances even have some patients leaving the hospital within hours of surgery.

“We have also worked on the variables that have contributed to the length of stay, reducing pain, and improving function,” explains orthopedic surgeon Dr. Phillip Downer.

When Dr. Downer works with a patient, he makes sure they are ready for surgery by losing weight, managing diabetes or blood pressure – whatever the case may be for each patient – so that after surgery, their body can optimally heal.” (Read Article)

Learn more about Dr. Downer and the Anterior Approach, please call 206-784-8833 for more information.