What to Expect
Making an appointment is easy. Treatment begins with a detailed evaluation by one of our specialists in a personalized setting. Our approach to patient care focuses not only on the person's foot or ankle condition but also on his or her total health. During every assessment, the physician discusses the patient's personal goals, whether they are returning to peak performance on the playing field or resuming everyday activities with optimal function and stability.
Although our physicians are renowned surgeons, they employ both operative and nonoperative treatments. They design a comprehensive care plan that is tailored to each patient’s needs and strives to offer the best possible outcome. In every case, patients can expect their physicians will keep them fully informed throughout treatment and offer their complete support and encouragement. One-on-one personalized care is a hallmark of our service.
Leading-Edge Clinical Research
Our specialists continually break new ground by developing innovative techniques to produce better outcomes for patients and shorten their recoveries. Some of these landmark achievements include:
- Fluoroscopically guided injection: Developed with Mass General's Radiology Department, this therapy enables physicians to target cortisone injections into joints with unmatched precision and rates highly in patient satisfaction surveys
- Innovative tendon surgery: Our specialists lead the way in modern tendon reconstruction techniques with minimally invasive arthroscopy. They also reconstruct "new" Achilles tendons using the patient's healthy tendon tissue
- Ankle arthritis: Our research staff explores new treatments for ankle arthritis, including fusions and joint replacements
- Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT): Program co-director George Theodore, MD, is one of the pioneers of this novel, noninvasive procedure used as an alternative treatment for heel spurs that resist traditional therapies. Also used to treat Achilles tendon problems, ESWT has demonstrated high success rates.
The Foot and Ankle Service provides care at the Massachusetts General Hospital Yawkey Center, Sports Medicine Center and associated satellite clinics. Our integrated care includes:
- Offices for primary care providers and surgeons
- Complete, in-house imaging services for X-rays, MRIs and CT scans
- World-class rehabilitation services staffed by our expert team of physical therapists
This warm, caring environment is just one of the many ways we ensure our patients enjoy the comfort and support they need on the road to recovery.
Our service was established in 1996 to meet the growing demands of patients requiring specialized treatment for foot and ankle injuries and disorders. Trusted by top professional athletes across the United States, our program proudly offers the same comprehensive and individualized care to all of our patients.
Each year, our renowned surgeons manage care for a high volume of patients. They diagnose and treat the full range of foot and ankle problems, including:
- Ankle cartilage injuries
- Tendon injuries
- Arthritis of the foot and ankle
- Sports-related injuries
Because we regularly manage the most complex cases, patients and referring physicians throughout New England and the United States seek our services. Our surgeons repair tendon injuries every week and work closely with the hospital's orthopaedic pediatric (learn more at MassGeneral Hospital for Children) and orthopaedic trauma services to treat severe fractures. We also perform complete reconstructive procedures for patients with tumors and congenital deformities such as clubfoot.
Our clinical staff also excels in treating patients with physical therapy and innovative, minimally invasive procedures such as arthroscopy and injection therapy. We are also one of the only hospitals in Greater Boston offering extracorporeal shockwave therapy, a breakthrough noninvasive treatment for plantar fasciitis and other tendon-related disorders. For patients with sports-related foot and ankle injuries, our service is one of the premier treatment centers in New England.
Internationally Acclaimed Physicians
The Massachusetts General Hospital Foot and Ankle service has always placed emphasis on clinical care, research and teaching. The service performs leading-edge clinical research and teaches residents and fellows of the Harvard Medical School.
Our renowned surgical staff includes:
- Christopher DiGiovanni, MD, Chief of the Foot & Ankle Service, is an internationally recognized foot and ankle surgeon whose his interests span the complete spectrum of foot and ankle problems. Dr. DiGiovanni’s promise to his patients is that he will always strive to provide them the best care possible—a commitment he takes seriously and considers to be a foremost priority.
- Holly Johnson, MD is an accomplished surgeon and researcher who treats all foot and ankle disorders, including traumatic injuries and degenerative conditions
- George Theodore, MD is Director of Foot and Ankle Sports Medicine and a nationally recognized expert in sports-related injuries and extracorporeal shockwave treatment. Dr. Theodore serves as a team physician for the Boston Red Sox and as a consultant to the New England Patriots and the Boston Bruins
All of our surgeons are board-certified and members of the prestigious American Academy of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. Our staff also includes expert orthotists, physiatrists, physical therapists and podiatrists at Mass General and our satellite facilities. No matter what his or her condition, every patient receives exceptional care from some of the foremost specialists in foot and ankle medicine.
Arthritis and other rheumatic diseases are characterized by pain, swelling, and limited movement in joints and connective tissues in the body.
Avascular necrosis is a disease that may cause bone or joint collapse as a result of loss of blood supply to the bone due to injury or other causes (such as long-term use of certain medications).
Calluses are protective pads made up of the thickened upper layer of skin due to repeated rubbing of the area. Corns are small calluses that develop on the top of the toes due to pressure or rubbing against shoes or other toes.
Foot pain is often caused by improper foot function. Improperly fitted shoes can worsen and, in some cases, cause foot problems.
A fracture is a partial or complete bone break. When a fracture occurs, it is classified as either open or closed.
Osteoarthritis is a chronic, degenerative, joint disease characterized by the breakdown of joint cartilage and adjacent bone in the neck, lower back, knees, hips and/or fingers.
The following related clinical trials and research studies are currently seeking participants at Massachusetts General Hospital. Search for clinical trials and studies in another area of interest.
Running a marathon was Alfred Buccilli's dream growing up in Revere, Mass.
MGH Hotline 10.01.10 Being skilled and dexterous with their hands is required of surgeons, who daily use special instruments that most people would never have the opportunity to handle.
All are invited to attend the fifth annual Boston Health & Fitness Expo hosted by Partners HealthCare and WHDH-7News June 25 and 26 at the Hynes Convention Center.
Do you suffer from sore feet? Read what Dr. Johnson, Interim Director of the Foot and Ankle Service, suggests for treating sore feet in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
Anne Holland “Holly” Johnson, MD, interim director of the Foot and Ankle Service in the MGH Department of Orthopædic Surgery, has been named the team doctor for the 2014 U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey team.
Anne Holland “Holly” Johnson, MD, a Foot and Ankle surgeon in the MGH Department of Orthopædic Surgery, will travel to Sochi, Russia on Feb. 1 to watch – and watch over – the U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey team.
Anne Holland “Holly” Johnson, MD, a foot and ankle surgeon in the MGH Department of Orthopædic Surgery and U.S. Women’s Olympic Hockey Team doctor, at center, savors her final days in Sochi, Russia.
Foot and Ankle Service
Foot & Ankle Surgeons
Christopher DiGiovanni, MD
Anne Holly Johnson, MD
George Theodore, MD
Julia Kurker, NP
Kayla McKinnon, PA-C
Kayla Quinn, NP