Items filtered by date: July 2023
There are branches of medicine that target specific areas of the body. Podiatry is aimed at treating disorders of the feet and ankles that can include common ailments, injuries, and deformities. The mandatory education to become a podiatrist begins with earning a bachelor's degree, followed by completing four years at a podiatric school. A residency program that will take three years to complete starts after podiatry school. This generally takes place in a hospital setting, which can provide the students with practical experience. At this point, qualified candidates will become a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine, which is abbreviated as DPM, and these letters will follow their name. Podiatry has become a popular branch of medicine as a result of increased incidents of diabetes and chronic diseases. These types of illnesses can affect the feet, and medical attention is often sought for relief. There are various forms of podiatry that can include sports medicine, wound care, and pediatrics. If you are interested in pursuing podiatry as a career, it is suggested that you converse with this type of doctor who can answer any questions you may have.
If you are dealing with pain in your feet and ankles, you may want to seek help from a podiatrist. Feel free to contact the foot specialists from Marvel Foot & Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
What Is a Podiatrist?
A podiatrist is a doctor of podiatric medicine who diagnoses and treats conditions of the foot, ankle, and related structures of the leg. Your podiatrist may specialize in a certain field such as sports medicine, wound care, pediatrics, and diabetic care. Podiatrists have the ability to become board certified through training, clinical experience, and then taking an exam.
What Do Podiatrists Do?
On a daily basis, a podiatrist may perform the following activities:
- Diagnose foot ailments such as ulcers, tumors, fractures, etc.
- Use innovative methods to treat conditions
- Use corrective orthotics, casts, and strappings to correct deformities
- Correct walking patterns and balance
- Provide individual consultations to patients
It is very important that you take care of your feet. It’s easy to take having healthy feet for granted, however foot problems tend to be among the most common health conditions. Podiatrists can help diagnose and treat a variety of feet related conditions, so it is crucial that you visit one if you need assistance.
A plantar fibroma is a firm mass found under the skin on the sole of the foot. It is a benign growth and may be noticed while walking or standing. It is defined as excess collagen, which may cause chronic pain, in addition to gradually increasing in size. A potential cause for a plantar fibroma to develop may be trauma that has happened to the plantar fascia. This can range from a puncture to the skin from repetitive motions, like running or climbing. Studies suggest there may be genetic factors responsible for a plantar fibroma, and they may affect people of European descent more than other nationalities. This condition may be more prevalent among people with existing conditions, such as diabetes, liver disease, or specific seizure disorders. If you notice a growth in the bottom of your foot, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward the correct treatment options.
A plantar fibroma may disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact the foot specialists of Marvel Foot & Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
A plantar fibroma is a fibrous knot in the arch of the foot. It is embedded in the plantar fascia which is a band of tissue that extends from the heel to the toes along the bottom of the foot. There can be multiple plantar fibromas in the feet at the same time. There are no known causes for this condition. If you have a plantar fibroma, there will be a bump in the arch of your foot that cannot be missed. Any associated pain is most often due to a shoe rubbing against the nodule. Non-surgical options, such as steroid injections, physical therapy, and orthotics should be tried first. Surgery is a last resort and is the only thing that will remove a plantar fibroma entirely. Consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and to determine the treatment regimen that is right for you.
What Causes a Plantar Fibroma?
While there are no specific causes identified, a plantar fibroma can possibly come from genetic predisposition or the formation of scar tissue that forms from healing the tears in the plantar fascia.
What Are the Symptoms of a Plantar Fibroma?
There will be a noticeable lump in the arch of the foot that may or may not cause pain. If pain is felt, it is typically because a shoe is rubbing up against the lump or when walking or standing barefoot.
Treatment and Prevention
A plantar fibroma will not disappear without treatment, but it can get smaller and be a non-issue. If pain persists, a podiatrist examines the foot and when the arch of the foot is pressed, pain can be felt down to the toes. An MRI or biopsy might be performed to help diagnose or evaluate the plantar fibroma. The following non-surgical options are generally enough to reduce the size and pain of these nodules:
- Steroid injections
- Physical therapy to help apply anti-inflammatory creams on the bump
Surgery is considered if the mass increases in size and the patient continues to feel pain after non-surgical methods are tried.
Fungus can affect the nails and is more apt to develop on the toenails as a result of warm and moist environments the feet can be in. It is an unsightly nail infection, and many people seek relief options to improve the appearance of their toenails. Common symptoms that are associated with toenail fungus can include brittle, thickened nails, and in severe cases, the nails may fall off. The most common type of toenail fungus is referred to as tinea unguium. The infection typically begins under the nail and gradually spreads until medical treatment is sought. White superficial onychomycosis is a nail fungal infection that is found in the top layer of the nail. This may be easier to treat than other types of toenail fungus. If you notice a change in your toenails, it is suggested that you contact a podiatrist who can effectively diagnose and offer treatment options for toenail fungus.
If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact the foot specialists of Marvel Foot & Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
- Warped or oddly shaped nails
- Yellowish nails
- Loose/separated nail
- Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
- Brittle, broken, thickened nail
If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.
In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.
In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.
Foot or ankle pain can negatively affect your day-to-day life and can occur due to several different conditions. Pain can also be an indicator of a more serious underlying condition, which is why you should seek professional help as soon as you notice any abnormalities in your feet.
Heel pain is a common foot condition, and there are various reasons why it can happen. The largest tendon in the body is called the Achilles tendon, and it attaches to the heel. An injury can cause this tendon to become torn or irritated, and heel pain may ensue. Many people suffer from plantar fasciitis, which is caused by an inflamed plantar fascia. This is the band of tissue that connects the heel to the toes, and the pain is often felt in the heel. The condition that is known as neuropathy can cause the inability to feel sensations in the foot, including the heel. Waking can be difficult, and patients may need to use a cane or walker to maintain balance. A stone bruise is a heel disorder that can happen to people who jump from heights and lands on their feet. This condition may affect the heel pad, which acts as a shock absorber and may possibly become damaged. If you have heel pain, it is strongly suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can determine what the reason is and offer treatment options that are correct for you.
Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact the foot specialists of Marvel Foot & Ankle Centers. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Causes of Heel Pain
Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.
Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.
Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.
Why Might Heel Pain Occur?
- Wearing ill-fitting shoes
- Wearing non-supportive shoes
- Weight change
- Excessive running
Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.