Non-Surgical

Physical therapy

Stretching and exercises, performed according to the advice of an appropriate medical professional, can help ease pain and improve range of motion. Physical therapy may be long-term and ongoing, or intermittent, such as rehabilitation after surgery.

Orthotics

Special footwear, called orthotics, may be prescribed to ease pain, provide support to the limb, and either improve the deformity or prevent worsening of the condition.

Braces and casting

Removable braces or non-removable casts may be prescribed and applied to ease pain, provide support to the limb, and either help reshape the limb or prevent worsening of the limb’s condition.

Off-loading

Off-loading is a technique of limiting or altering weight bearing — that is, ensuring that the patient isn’t “on their feet” or that the pressure of standing and moving is more evenly distributed, so that the deformity does not worsen. Off-loading can be achieved by certain kinds of braces, casts and special footwear, or simply by sitting and elevating the affected limb.

Pain medication

To help manage the pain of a limb deformity, pain medication such as acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen) may be prescribed. NSAIDs have the additional benefit of reducing inflammation, which can further ease pain and improve mobility in the affected limb.

Steroid injections

In certain cases, where inflammation is a key component of a limb deformity, steroid injections may be indicated. Reducing inflammation may ease pain and improve mobility.