Items filtered by date: October 2023
Foot arthritis is not only extremely painful but it also can seriously affect your ability to conduct normal daily activities. Medication can play a vital role in the relieving pain and inflammation of arthritic foot pain. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, help to reduce inflammation and pain, and some topical versions in the form of gels or creams can offer targeted relief. Corticosteroids swiftly control inflammation, with oral corticosteroids used for systemic issues and joint-specific injections for localized inflammation. Analgesics, including acetaminophen and opioids, focus solely on pain relief, but opioids are for short-term use due to their potential for dependency. Certain topical treatments can alleviate muscle and surface-level soft tissue pain. To help reduce the progression of arthritic foot pain, disease modifying antirheumatic drugs, or DMARDs, may be used with small joint conditions like rheumatoid arthritis. Gout medications manage uric acid levels and provide relief during flare ups. Biologics are systemic agents that alter the course of inflammatory diseases that affect various joints, including the feet. Osteoporosis medications, while not foot-specific, promote overall bone strength, and may help to reduce the risk of fractures. If you suffer from any type of arthritis that affects your feet, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist who can recommend the appropriate medication for you.
Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Ocotillo Foot and Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Arthritic Foot Care
Arthritis is a term that is commonly used to describe joint pain. The condition itself can occur to anyone of any age, race, or gender, and there are over 100 types of it. Nevertheless, arthritis is more commonly found in women compared to men, and it is also more prevalent in those who are overweight. The causes of arthritis vary depending on which type of arthritis you have. Osteoarthritis for example, is often caused by injury, while rheumatoid arthritis is caused by a misdirected immune system.
- Decreased Range of Motion
Arthritic symptoms range in severity, and they may come and go. Some symptoms stay the same for several years but could potentially get worse with time. Severe cases of arthritis can prevent its sufferers from performing daily activities and make walking difficult.
- Occupation – Occupations requiring repetitive knee movements have been linked to osteoarthritis
- Obesity – Excess weight can contribute to osteoarthritis development
- Infection – Microbial agents can infect the joints and trigger arthritis
- Joint Injuries – Damage to joints may lead to osteoarthritis
- Age – Risk increases with age
- Gender –Most types are more common in women
- Genetics – Arthritis can be hereditary
If you suspect your arthritis is affecting your feet, it is crucial that you see a podiatrist immediately. Your doctor will be able to address your specific case and help you decide which treatment method is best for you.
Gout, a form of arthritis, and kidney disease share a complex interconnection that significantly impacts an individual's health. Gout is characterized by the accumulation of uric acid crystals in joints, causing intense pain and inflammation, commonly beginning in the big toe. This can temporarily cause the inability to walk, and medical attention from a podiatrist is often sought. Interestingly, uric acid is primarily filtered and excreted through the kidneys. In individuals with gout, high levels of uric acid can strain the kidneys, potentially leading to kidney stones or reduced kidney function. Conversely, pre-existing kidney issues can hinder the efficient elimination of uric acid, contributing to elevated levels in the bloodstream and subsequent gout attacks. Furthermore, medications commonly prescribed for gout can impact renal function, posing challenges for those already grappling with kidney disease. Understanding and managing this intricate relationship between gout and kidney disease is crucial for comprehensive treatment strategies that address both conditions and enhance overall well-being. If you have developed gout, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can help you manage this condition.
Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact one of our podiatrists from Ocotillo Foot and Ankle Centers. Our doctors 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.
High heels are a popular fashion choice, often adding a stylish touch to special occasions. However, one should be aware of the potential negative effects on foot health when worn regularly. High heels can lead to various foot problems, including bunions, blisters, corns, and calluses. One common side effect is lower back pain, as these shoes lack adequate foot support, causing an uneven weight distribution. Foot pain is prevalent due to circulation problems and metatarsalgia. Ankle sprains, broken ankles, and awkward spinal curvature may result from wearing high heels, especially on uneven surfaces. Furthermore, high heels can constrict blood vessels and hinder natural blood flow, potentially leading to varicose veins and deformities such as hammertoe. They can also weaken ligaments and increase pressure on the knee joint, possibly causing osteoarthritis. If you enjoy wearing high heels, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist to discuss the frequency of wear and consider alternative footwear choices that may help prevent potential health issues.
High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Ocotillo Foot and Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Effects of High Heels on the Feet
High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal. Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.
Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?
- Ankle Joints
- Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
- Balls of the Feet
- Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
- Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain. The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.
What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?
- Morton’s Neuroma
- Plantar Fasciitis
How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?
If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems. Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet. Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising. If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work. Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available.
One discomfort that often accompanies pregnancy is swollen ankles, known as edema. Fortunately, there are several ways to minimize the problem. The key to managing swollen ankles during pregnancy is to defy gravity. Sit with your feet elevated to reduce pressure on the lower extremities. While seated, circle your ankles occasionally to encourage blood flow, and avoid standing for extended periods. Sleeping on your left side is believed to be beneficial for your baby and for your circulation. This position alleviates pressure on the inferior vena cava, helping to reduce ankle swelling. Elevating your legs at a gentle angle with pillows can further promote healthy blood flow. Consider investing in compression stockings to prevent blood from pooling in your ankles. Incorporate daily gentle exercises into your routine, such as swimming and walking. These activities help keep your blood flowing optimally, reducing the risk of swollen ankles. If you have concerns about swollen ankles or any other foot-related issues during pregnancy, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for an evaluation and recommended treatment options.
Pregnant women with swollen feet can be treated with a variety of different methods that are readily available. For more information about other cures for swollen feet during pregnancy, consult with one of our podiatrists from Ocotillo Foot and Ankle Centers. Our doctors will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.
What Foot Problems Can Arise During Pregnancy?
One problem that can occur is overpronation, which occurs when the arch of the foot flattens and tends to roll inward. This can cause pain and discomfort in your heels while you’re walking or even just standing up, trying to support your baby.
Another problem is edema, or swelling in the extremities. This often affects the feet during pregnancy but tends to occur in the later stages.
How Can I Keep My Feet Healthy During Pregnancy?
- Wearing orthotics can provide extra support for the feet and help distribute weight evenly
- Minimize the amount of time spent walking barefoot
- Wear shoes with good arch support
- Wear shoes that allow for good circulation to the feet
- Elevate feet if you experience swelling
- Massage your feet
- Get regular, light exercise, such as walking, to promote blood circulation to the feet
Laser therapy for fungal nails is an innovative treatment approach gaining popularity in the realm of podiatry. This non-invasive procedure harnesses the power of laser light to target and eliminate the fungal infection affecting the toenails. The laser's heat destroys the fungal cells while leaving the surrounding healthy tissue unharmed. This treatment is often preferred over oral antifungal medications as they can have side effects and may require prolonged use. One of the key advantages of laser therapy is its quick and virtually painless nature. Most patients require multiple sessions for optimal results, and there is typically no downtime after each session. Although laser therapy for fungal nails shows promise, it may not be effective for all cases, and results can vary from person to person. Ultimately, the goal is to restore healthy, clear nails and enhance overall foot health. If you have developed toenail fungus, it is strongly suggested that you contact a podiatrist who can determine if laser therapy is the correct treatment method for you.
Laser treatment can be an effective way to get rid of toenail fungus. If you have any questions about laser treatment, consult with one of our podiatrists from Ocotillo Foot and Ankle Centers. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment for fungal nails.
What Are Toenail Fungal Infections?
Onychomycosis, or fungal infection of the nail, is a relatively common and non-serious condition. Around 10 percent of U.S. citizens are afflicted with fungal nails. Common forms of fungus that infect the nail include dermatophytes, yeasts, and molds.
Symptoms of Toenail Fungal Infections Include:
- Nail thickening
- Brittleness of the nail
- Discoloration of the nail
Diagnosis for Fungal Nails
Fungal infections are diagnosed by fungal culture and microscopy. This will rule out any other conditions such as nail trauma, psoriasis, lichen planus, and onychogryphosis.
What Is Laser Treatment?
Laser treatment is a non-invasive, safe, quick, and painless procedure that uses the heat from a laser to kill fungus in the nail. Each infected nail is targeted with a laser for several minutes. The treatment is usually utilized several different times over a select period. During this time, a podiatrist will keep an eye on the infection.