Accessory Navicular! What is it?

The accessory navicular is a common but often misunderstood anomaly in foot anatomy, frequently encountered in orthopaedic practice. This supplementary piece of bone found adjacent to the navicular bone in the arch of the foot can lead to discomfort and mobility issues for some individuals.

Despite its prevalence, estimated to affect approximately 10-12% of the population, not everyone with an accessory navicular experience symptoms. However, for those who do, the condition can manifest as pain, swelling, or tenderness along the inner side of the foot. Such symptoms often worsen with physical activity or prolonged standing, significantly impacting daily life.

Treatment of symptomatic accessory navicular typically begins with conservative measures.

These may include rest, orthotic devices to provide support and relieve pressure, and anti-inflammatory medications to alleviate pain and swelling.

Physical therapy exercises focusing on strengthening foot muscles and improving

biomechanics can also be beneficial.

In cases where conservative treatments fail to provide relief, surgical intervention may be considered. Excision of the accessory navicular can effectively resolve symptoms and restore function, although it entails a recovery period and rehabilitation.

By understanding the nature of the accessory navicular and its management options, orthopaedic

practitioners can offer tailored care to individuals experiencing foot discomfort, helping them regain comfort and mobility.

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Dr. Gordon Slater

Dr. Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions.

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Dr Gordon Slater is a highly-skilled surgeon specialising in foot and ankle conditions and sports injuries. Dr Slater is one of the first foot and ankle surgeons in Australia to adopt minimally invasive surgical techniques. He routinely uses MIS to treat a range of conditions, including bunions. MIS  has many advantages including shorter operating times, reduced post-operative pain, reduced risk of infection, minimal scarring and better cosmetic outcomes.

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