Posts Tagged "podiatrist"

Toenail Disorders May Be More Serious Than Many People Realize

Posted by on Nov 18, 2015 in Toenail Fungus |

When Americans think of toenail disorders, cancer is typically the last thing that comes to their minds. However, it is not uncommon for cancer to show up on the feet and underneath of a person’s toenails. Unfortunately, many people often mistake the signs of toenail bed cancer as blood blisters from impact injuries or other toenail disorders. Toenail disorders that tend to mimic the outward signs of subungual melanomas include, but are not confined to the following: Longitudinal Linear Lesions Splinter Hemorrhages Melanonychia Striata Fungal Infections They typically involve a black or brown discoloration that forms underneath of the toenail. Cancer presents itself the same way with a few key, and often subtle, differences. It too will show up underneath the toenail as a discolored spot or line. The spot or line will usually have an irregular border, asymmetrical shape and variations in shading or coloration. As time goes on, the spot or line may change shape, spread throughout the nail bed and possibly to the surrounding soft tissue. If it spreads too much, surgical amputation will most likely be ordered, as well as chemotherapy and skin grafting. Therefore, Largo podiatrists typically order biopsies to determine whether or not a patient has cancer, or one of the other toenail disorders mentioned earlier. The biopsy generally involves removing the toenail so a proper tissue sample may be obtained. If the discolored area is rather large, the podiatrist or attending physician may need to repair the hole made by the tissue sampling process with sutures and order post-opt wound care. The length of healing time involved will vary based on how well the patient follows the podiatrist’s wound care recommendations, the wound’s initial size, and the patient’s overall health. After the biopsy procedure is complete, the tissue sample is usually tested in-house or at a local lab. If cancerous cells are detected, additional treatment, as mentioned above, may be needed. To speak with a podiatrist about this and other serious toenail disorders, please call our office...

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Foot Orthotics: Will They Help Seasonal Athletes Recover from Shin Splints?

Posted by on Nov 5, 2015 in Foot Orthotics, Running Injuries |

Although shin splints can happen at any time of the year, they tend to spring up more often when people begin returning to the tennis courts and running tracks. The reason behind the increase is easy to understand. As people try to get back into the swing of their favorite sports, they inadvertently put undue pressure on their tibias, tendons and muscles. That added pressure sparks inflammation, mild soreness and eventually severe pain that may interfere with their exercise routines or daily ambulation. Thankfully, wearing foot orthotics and taking over-the-counter, anti-inflammatory medications frequently helps them feel better quicker. First, podiatrists must identify whether the person’s pain is emanating from the medial, lateral or anterior area of the shin. Then, it is common to watch the patient walk and determine if there is excessive pronation, forefoot valgus, supination or other biomechanical problems that may be contributing to the person’s shin splints. Afterward, custom foot orthotics may be ordered and designed to suit the patient’s needs. Ideally, whichever foot orthotics are prescribed, they’ll correct the biomechanical issue, thereby reducing stress on the lower leg during routine ambulation or running. So which foot orthotic devices are used to help ease the pain of shin splints? As you can guess, it will depend on the person’s foot and the contributing biomechanical problem at hand. Sometimes supportive, foam inserts with cut-away areas may help relieve the pressure. In other situations, it may be wise to include a supportive wrap or bandage that helps to hold the foot, ankle and lower leg into the proper position for running or walking. Understandably, the cost and amount of time it generally takes to make custom foot orthotics for people suffering from shin splints varies as well. To learn more about treating seasonal shin splints with customized foot orthotics, please contact one of our knowledgeable podiatrists today. Image courtesy of Stockimages/...

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Diabetic Foot Care Can Save Lives

Posted by on May 22, 2015 in Diabetic Foot Care |

For many people, feet are something that’s beneath their notice, so to speak. Unless the cause of an acute problem, they simply aren’t given much thought. Unfortunately, if you or someone you love has diabetes, you can’t afford to ignore these, the least noticed of our physiology. In fact, neglecting foot care in a diabetic can result in wounds, infections, even amputations and death. The good news, however, is that prevention truly is the best medicine. A few simple precautions, taken regularly, can help to ensure that both you and your feet remain healthy. Check your feet everyday. For the flexibility-challenged among us, this may require using a hand-held mirror. You may even need to draft the help of an assistant. Whatever method you utilize, the important thing is to visualize every square centimeter of both feet, between every toe and behind each heel. Diabetic shoes are a valuable investment. Talk to your Largo foot doctor about the possibility of Medicare coverage for this specially designed footwear. Before considering these, contemplate the fact that a small wound on a toe can lead to gangrene and an amputation. Suddenly going through the effort and expense of diabetic shoes doesn’t seem quite so extreme. A corollary of this would be to avoid walking barefoot. Notify your healthcare provider of any problems. Cuts, nicks, bruises, discoloration, and ingrown toenails quickly become life-threatening problems. Clean feet are healthy feet. Bacteria like warm, dark, and moist places. Therefore, aim to keep your feet clean, dry, and at as comfortable a temperature as possible. If you can comfortably reach your toes, be sure to keep them well trimmed. If you have any problems or questions, feel free to ask your podiatrist or caregiver. It would be a good idea to have a daily diabetic foot care routine, in which you can incorporate cleaning and inspecting into a habit. Your feet need blood flow too. Put your feet up when at rest, which will also help to decrease any swelling. Wiggle your toes and pump your feet at random intervals throughout the day, particularly when you’ve been sitting for extended periods of time. Also, try to avoid crossing your legs and cutting off circulation. See a podiatrist. This is one of the most powerful preventative interventions for a diabetic’s foot care arsenal. An experienced and knowledgeable podiatrist can be your most trusted ally in the fight for health, from the ground up. You only get one pair of feet, and they have to last a lifetime. By implementing a few simple strategies on a frequent and regular basis, by, in other words, supporting them, you can ensure that they’ll support you – for...

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