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Gout and the Feet

Gout, a form of arthritis, affects the feet due to high uric acid levels. It is well-studied, with genetics playing a significant role. Symptoms can range from none to acute attacks and chronic conditions. Diagnosis involves tests and imaging, such as finding monosodium urate, or MSU, crystals in fluid, and advanced scans help to monitor it. Treatment includes managing flares, chronic issues, and preventing future attacks. Medication, lifestyle changes, and education are key. If you have gout and it is affecting the joints of your feet, it is suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and advice in managing this painful condition.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.

People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.

Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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How to Spot the Early Signs of Ingrown Toenails

Recognizing the early signs of an ingrown toenail can help you to avoid more serious complications by getting quicker treatment. One of the first signs is tenderness or pain along the edge of the toenail. You may feel it most when you walk or apply pressure to the area. As the condition progresses, redness and swelling may develop around the affected toenail, indicating inflammation and potential infection. The skin along the edge of the nail may become irritated or appear puffy. If there is pus or discharge appearing at the edge of the nail, the ingrown toenail has likely become infected. If you have an ingrown toenail, or struggle with recurrent ingrown toenails, it is suggested you consult a podiatrist who can effectively treat the condition and prevent complications from arising. 

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Craig Foster, DPM of Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Hammertoe Symptoms

Daily wear and tear can harm your toes, which are essential for balance and movement. Hammertoe is a toe problem where the middle joint bends upward, making the toe look like a hammer. Toes have muscles on top to stretch them and muscles underneath to bend them. Weak bottom muscles can lead to an upward bend at the middle joint, causing a hammertoe. This can hurt while walking and may affect balance. Symptoms include a bent toe that will not relax, swelling, corns, calluses, pain while walking, and changes in balance or walking style. Other toe issues like claw toes, mallet toes, and bunions exist, often alongside hammertoes. Risk factors include foot shape, medical conditions, like diabetes, arthritis, wrong shoes, and foot injuries. If you have a hammertoe that is causing discomfort, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for guidance.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Buschke-Ollendorff Syndrome and the Feet

Buschke-Ollendorff syndrome, or BOS, manifests with distinctive symptoms that can affect the feet. This rare condition combines skin and bone abnormalities and is characterized by skin lesions and bone spots on the feet. Skin lesions result from connective tissue irregularities and appear as spots, while bone spots are painless areas of heightened bone density, detectable through X-rays. Symptoms usually begin in childhood, and although the skin lesions may progress with age, they typically do not lead to additional health concerns. However, in rare instances, BOS can advance to melorheostosis, causing abnormal bone growth, potentially resulting in bone pain and deformities within the feet. Diagnosis hinges on clinical examination, imaging studies, and genetic testing. If you have foot pain of any type, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

Some foot conditions may require additional professional care. If you have any concerns, contact Craig Foster, DPM of Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Rare Foot Conditions

The majority of foot conditions are common and can be treated by a podiatrist.  Standard diagnostic procedures are generally used to identify specific conditions and treatment can be rendered. A podiatrist also treats rare foot conditions which can be difficult to diagnose and may need extra attention and care. 

There are many rare foot conditions that can affect children. Some of these can include:

  • Freiberg’s disease
  • Kohler’s disease
  • Maffucci syndrome

Freiberg’s disease - This can be seen as a deterioration and flattening of a metatarsal bone that exists in the ball of the foot. It typically affects pre-teen and teenage girls, but can affect anyone at any age. Symptoms that can accompany this can be swelling, stiffness, and the patient may limp. 

Kohler’s disease - This often targets the bone in the arch of the foot and affects younger boys. It can lead to an interruption of the blood supply which ultimately can lead to bone deterioration. The patient may limp or experience tenderness, swelling, and redness.

Maffucci syndrome - This affects the long bones in a child’s foot leading to the development of abnormal bone lesions. They are benign growths and typically develop in early childhood and the bones may be susceptible to breaking. 

A podiatrist can properly diagnose and treat all types of rare foot conditions. If your child is affected by any of these symptoms or conditions, please don’t hesitate to call our office so the correct treatment method can begin.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.
 

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Do You Suffer From Painful Feet?

Painful deformities, such as hammertoes, can be treated. Stop living with foot pain, and have beautiful feet again!

Choosing the Right Ankle Brace

Selecting the appropriate ankle brace is akin to navigating a complex landscape, especially given the diverse needs of athletes. Ankle injuries demand tailored solutions, and understanding the attributes of each brace type is important. Sleeves, while the least stable, offer comfort and are suitable for first-line treatment. Straps, popular among athletes, involve cloth straps that create a heel-lock figure-eight, yet their complexity can lead to adherence issues. Stirrups, popular in the 90s, now find use in splints and controlled ankle motion. Lace-ups, the original stable design, have evolved with improvements in functionality and comfort. Hybrid braces, combining features of sleeves, straps, stirrups, and lace-ups, offer both comfort and stability, but come at a higher cost. The choice among these types depends on factors such as the athlete's position, preferences, and the specific injury or condition being addressed. It is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to find the most suitable brace for you.

Ankle and foot injuries are common among athletes and in many sports. They can be caused by several problems and may be potentially serious. If you are feeling pain or think you were injured in a sporting event or when exercising, consult with Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Common Injuries

The most common injuries that occur in sporting activities include:

  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains
  • Broken Foot
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Stress Fractures
  • Turf Toe

Symptoms

Symptoms vary depending upon the injury and in some cases, there may be no symptoms at all. However, in most cases, some form of symptom is experienced. Pain, aching, burning, bruising, tenderness, tightness or stiffness, sensation loss, difficulty moving, and swelling are the most common symptoms.

Treatment

Just as symptoms vary depending upon the injury, so do treatment options. A common treatment method is known as the RICE method. This method involves rest, applying ice, compression and elevating the afflicted foot or ankle. If the injury appears to be more serious, surgery might be required, such as arthroscopic or reconstructive surgery. Lastly, rehabilitation or therapy might be needed to gain full functionality in the afflicted area. Any discomfort experienced by an athlete must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Progression of Diabetic Foot Problems

Diabetic foot problems associated with diabetes mellitus can affect one or both feet in type one or type two diabetes cases. These issues, often linked to nerve damage and circulatory problems inherent to diabetes, exhibit symptoms over time. Common diabetic foot problems include skin complications and structural foot alterations, foot ulcers, infections, and foot structure changes. The root cause of diabetic foot problems lies in inadequate insulin regulation, as diabetes disrupts insulin production or responsiveness. Elevated blood sugar levels, over time, inflict nerve damage, leading to peripheral neuropathy and hindered blood circulation, resulting in peripheral artery disease, or PAD. Peripheral neuropathy symptoms can consist of numbness, tingling, and diminished sensation in the feet, making ulcer detection challenging. Left untreated, infections can fester due to impaired blood flow, potentially leading to gangrene and tissue death. Early-stage diabetic foot problems often go unnoticed but can be identified by leg pain, numbness, and skin changes. Timely intervention is crucial. Diabetic foot issues progress at varying rates. Untreated complications may entail ulcers, corns, deformities, muscle weakness, and impaired blood flow. Seeking professional treatment for wounds and infections is vital, with treatments like wound dressings, antibiotics, off-loading devices, and debridement. In severe cases, surgical intervention, such as vascular procedures, skin grafts, or deformity correction may be necessary. If you suffer from diabetic foot problems, it is strongly suggested that you schedule regular appointments with a podiatrist to monitor your feet and do all that is necessary to prevent problems from arising and taking care of those that do.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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The Benefits of Flat Feet in Athletics

Flat feet, often considered a drawback in sports, can actually provide some advantages. Some well-known athletes have flat feet and excel in their respective fields, and roughly 25 percent of the population has flat feet. One key advantage of having flat feet is the ability to absorb shock effectively as a result of increased flexibility in the arch, which aids in controlling and mitigating the impact upon landing. However, individuals with flat feet should focus on strengthening their feet to perform well in sports and minimize potential associated risks. The benefits of having flat feet for speed and injury prevention become evident when we consider that flat arches tend to lower the risk of injuries as they offer more flexibility, enhancing shock absorption capabilities. Additionally, athletes with flat feet often display better control during the landing phase of sprints, optimizing the time their feet spend in contact with the ground. This is mainly because their feet typically make initial ground contact in a neutral or slightly pronated position, allowing for a more efficient transition off the ground. Ultimately, regardless of arch type, the strength and stability of the feet are vital for controlling landings. Weak arch support during landing can lead to extended foot contact or potential injuries. If you have flat feet and they are causing problems in the sports you like to participate in, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for an evaluation in addition to recommendations on how to strengthen flat feet into a potential advantage.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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How to Select Optimal Running Footwear

Choosing the right size footwear for running is pivotal in ensuring a comfortable and injury-free experience. Begin by measuring your foot length and width, considering variations between brands and models. Prioritize a thumb's width of space between your longest toe and the shoe's end to accommodate natural foot swelling during running. Verify that the shoe snugly holds the heel without excessive tightness or slipping. Additionally, assess the arch support and overall fit to align with your foot's unique structure. It is important to try on both shoes, as foot sizes can differ slightly. As you test the shoes, simulate running motions to gauge comfort and stability. Remember that the right size is not solely determined by numerical measurements; it is about finding a shoe that feels secure, and supportive, and allows for the natural movement of your feet. If you would like additional information on how to choose the right shoe size, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist.

Finding a properly-fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information about treatment, contact Craig Foster, DPM from Traction Podiatry Group. Our practitioner will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in proper fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improper fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, properly-fitting shoes are vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Gilbert, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Take extra care when walking on snow and ice. If you experience a fall and sustain an injury, we're here to help. We treat trauma, soft tissue injuries, and fractures.

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