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Tuesday, 21 June 2022 00:00

Common Achilles Tendon Disorders

The Achilles tendon is a band of tissue that runs down the back of your leg and connects the calf muscle to the heel. Its main job is to lift the heel so you can walk, run, and jump. When the Achilles tendon is overused, it can result in either tendonitis or tendinosis. Achilles tendonitis is especially common among athletes, laborers who spend a lot of time on their feet, and people who exercise infrequently. Symptoms may consist of pain, tenderness, stiffness, or soreness at the back of the heel. Tendonitis is an inflammation usually caused by a sudden increase in repetitive activity and normally is short-lived once you cease the activity. If ignored or neglected, however, it can become Achilles tendonosis, a far more serious condition. This may result in minor tears that degenerate the tendon and can eventually cause it to rupture. If you believe you have injured your Achilles tendon, please consult with a podiatrist who can properly diagnose the severity of your condition and offer the appropriate treatment options.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

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

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Tuesday, 14 June 2022 00:00

Exercise May Help to Prevent Falling

Research has indicated that practicing exercise is the most beneficial method that may help to decrease the risk of falling. This may be the most effective fall prevention method seniors 65 or older can practice. Other successful techniques can include improving lighting in the household, removing worn rugs, and installing grab bars in the shower and toilet area. Clutter is important to throw away, and this can help to make the home safer. Additionally, many seniors choose to use walkers and canes to maintain balance, and this can help to prevent falling. One out of five seniors will suffer a serious injury as a result of falling, and it is important to implement as many prevention strategies as possible. Having regular physical and eye examinations is necessary to keep medications and eyeglass prescriptions up to date. If you would like more information about how falling can affect the feet, and how to keep the home safe, please confer with a podiatrist.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with one of our podiatrists from Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

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

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Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Tuesday, 07 June 2022 00:00

Synovial Joint Pain in the Feet

The foot consists of 34 joints, all of which contain synovial membranes. When these membranes become inflamed, the result is swelling, redness, and pain when you move. This condition, known as synovitis, is common among athletes who are involved in repetitive stress movements like lifting and squatting. Patients with rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile arthritis, lupus, and psoriatic arthritis may also experience synovitis. In these cases, excessive growth of the synovial membrane is part of an autoimmune response where the body attacks itself. The cells then release enzymes into the synovial capsule of the joint causing further inflammation and pain. Depending on the cause, pain from synovitis can be short-lived or continued. If you are experiencing frequent joint pain or inflammation of the feet and ankles, it is suggested to check with a podiatrist for a complete examination and proper diagnosis.

Because RA affects more than just your joints, including the joints in your feet and ankles, it is important to seek early diagnosis from your podiatrist if you feel like the pain in your feet might be caused by RA. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s own immune system attacks the membranes surrounding the joints. Inflammation of the lining and eventually the destruction of the joint’s cartilage and bone occur, causing severe pain and immobility.

Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Feet

Although RA usually attacks multiple bones and joints throughout the entire body, almost 90 percent of cases result in pain in the foot or ankle area.

Symptoms

  • Swelling and pain in the feet
  • Stiffness in the feet
  • Pain on the ball or sole of feet
  • Joint shift and deformation

Diagnosis

Quick diagnosis of RA in the feet is important so that the podiatrist can treat the area effectively. Your doctor will ask you about your medical history, occupation, and lifestyle to determine the origin of the condition. Rheumatoid Factor tests help to determine if someone is affected by the disease.

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

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Many adults complain of plantar fasciitis, which is a painful condition caused by inflammation of the band of tissue that runs from the heel to the toes. This can also be found in children, especially those who participate in sports that involve a lot of running and jumping. Dancers, runners, and basketball players may be more susceptible because the plantar fascia absorbs the pounding of every impact with the floor or ground. This results in pain at the bottom of the heel, typically a result of repetitive use. The pain generally worsens after activity and increases as the day goes on. The heel may be particularly painful in the morning but may lessen after stretching or walking. Plantar fasciitis can become worse from being overweight, wearing footwear that does not provide enough cushioning, tight calf muscles, high arches, and flat feet. If your child complains of heel pain on a consistent basis, it is a good idea to consult a podiatrist to see if plantar fasciitis may be causing the problem.

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, contact one of our podiatrists of Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of in-toeing or out-toeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

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

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy

A blister is a fluid-filled bubble that forms on the skin.  Most often these blisters are caused by one toe repeatedly rubbing against another toe or the lining of a shoe and irritating the skin. These are referred to as friction or pinch blisters and can typically be treated at home. Wearing shoes that fit properly, keeping feet clean and dry, and not walking barefoot in warm, humid areas can help prevent friction blisters from forming.  It is important not to pop or pick at a blister as it can become infected, but if it has broken, toes should be soaked in clean, warm water and Epsom salts. If you are unsure which type of blister has formed, you suspect an infection, or if the friction blister is not healing within a reasonable time, it is suggested you consult with a podiatrist to have it evaluated, treated, and to learn how the formation of your blisters can be prevented.

Blisters may appear as a single bubble or in a cluster. They can cause a lot of pain and may be filled with pus, blood, or watery serum. If your feet are hurting, contact one of our podiatrists of Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Foot Blisters

Foot blisters are often the result of friction. This happens due to the constant rubbing from shoes, which can lead to pain.

What Are Foot Blisters?

A foot blister is a small fluid-filled pocket that forms on the upper-most layer of the skin. Blisters are filled with clear fluid and can lead to blood drainage or pus if the area becomes infected.

Symptoms

(Blister symptoms may vary depending on what is causing them)

  • Bubble of skin filled with fluid
  • Redness
  • Moderate to severe pain
  • Itching

Prevention & Treatment

In order to prevent blisters, you should be sure to wear comfortable shoes with socks that cushion your feet and absorb sweat. Breaking a blister open may increase your chances of developing an infection. However, if your blister breaks, you should wash the area with soap and water immediately and then apply a bandage to the affected area. If your blisters cause severe pain it is important that you call your podiatrist right away.

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

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Tuesday, 17 May 2022 00:00

Can Bunions Be Prevented?

Women are more prone to developing bunions than men. This may be a result of wearing high heels or shoes that do not have adequate room in the toe area. A bunion appears as a bony lump on the side of the big toe and is considered to be a foot deformity. This protrusion causes the bone in the big toe to gradually move toward the other toes and can produce pain and discomfort. People who develop bunions may eventually get osteoarthritis in the big toe, which can be the source of chronic pain. Additionally, the risk of getting a bunion may increase in patients who have short calf muscles or a shortened Achilles tendon, and medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and flat feet. Bunions may be prevented by wearing shoes that are comfortable and flat. It may help to frequently walk barefoot, which may be beneficial in strengthening the muscles in the overall foot. If you have developed a bunion, it is strongly suggested that you speak with a podiatrist who can provide you with correct treatment options, which may include surgery for permanent removal. 

If you are suffering from bunions, contact one of our podiatrists of Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why Do Bunions Form?

Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How Are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

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

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Wednesday, 11 May 2022 00:00

Do Your Child's Feet Hurt?

Have your child's feet been examined lately? Healthy feet are happy feet. If your child is complaining of foot pain, it may be a sign of underlying problems.

Tuesday, 10 May 2022 00:00

Can Stretches Help Hammertoe?

The foot condition that is known as hammertoe is considered to be a physical deformity. It can develop as a result of wearing shoes that are too narrow or it may form due to genetic reasons. It is defined as the second toe bending at the middle joint, causing it to face downward. The toe may shift toward the other toes, which may force them to bend or overlap. Research has indicated this deformity is caused by shortened muscles that are inside the toes, and this can prompt limited extending. There are stretches that can help to relieve the discomfort from hammertoe and this can be instrumental in regaining structure and movement. Additionally, it is beneficial to wear shoes that have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary for permanent straightening. If you have developed a hammertoe, it is suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can choose the best treatment option for you.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists from Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors 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 Johnstown, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Tuesday, 03 May 2022 00:00

Symptoms of Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is a common foot condition that is known to be contagious. It is caused by a fungus and lives in environments that are warm and moist. When the feet become damp, this can be an ideal place for this type of fungus to grow and thrive. Additional areas include shower room floors, locker rooms, and public swimming pools. The symptoms consist of red skin and itchiness between the toes and on the bottom of the feet, and the skin can begin to crack. In severe cases, small blisters that are filled with pus may develop. There are over-the-counter treatments that may be helpful in treating mild cases of athlete’s foot. If there is little or no improvement, it is strongly suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can prescribe the correct medication for you.


 

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with one of our podiatrists from Lovely Foot Associates, PC. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.

What Is Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.

Prevention

The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:

  • Thoroughly washing and drying feet
  • Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
  • Using shower shoes in public showers
  • Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
  • Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot

Symptoms

Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Scaly and peeling skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.

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

 

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