At Advanced Foot and Ankle Center we see a lot of patients who experience ball of the foot pain. There are several possible reasons for this, but one potential cause is fat pad atrophy. There is a natural cushion for our feet at both the heels and ball of the foot that is made of fat that protects these areas during ambulation. As we age, those areas can begin to shift out of place or can become thinner due to all the amount of stress and pressure over the years. As this happens, we no longer have that natural protection to cushion these bony prominences. This can then cause pain, calluses and even wounds due to loss of the fat. This can be detrimental to our diabetic patients. At Advanced Foot and Ankle Center our Podiatrists have treated hundreds of patients with this condition and can offer customized solutions to help you back on your feet. If you believe that you are experiencing this or any other foot/ankle disorder please call us at 972-542-2155 to be evaluated.
A common complaint we see at Advanced Foot and Ankle Center is pain along the outside of the foot and/or ankle. This pain usually starts after walking on uneven surfaces or after starting new exercises/sport. It can also occur after an ankle sprain or wearing a bad pair of shoes. One of the most common reasons for this type of pain is peroneal tendinitis. There are two peroneal tendons that start just below the knee on the outside of the leg and course down toward the back of the ankle. If you look straight down at your foot, you will most likely see a, “bump” along the outer, midportion of your foot. This is where one peroneal tendon attaches and the other goes beneath the foot and attaches to the underside on the inside of the foot. Together these tendons work to pull the foot down and out during gait. They are used every step that we take. Because these tendons are stretched and pulled with every step, they can become tired or inflamed fairly easy. This problem may get better with simple rest alone but most of the time it does not and needs extra help.
Treating this issue begins with the correct diagnosis. One of our provides will take a thorough history and examine the lower extremity. We will usually obtain X-rays in the office as well to rule out any problems with the structure surrounding the tendon. After the diagnosis is made, treatment will be tailored so we can get you back on your feet as soon as possible.
At Advanced Foot and Ankle Center, our providers treat this condition nearly every day. We have the experience and tools to help get your better and stay better. If you have any questions about this or any other foot/ankle condition, please call us at 972-542-2155.
One wrong step and you could just end up dealing with a sprained ankle. A sprain occurs when the ankle suddenly rolls inwards or outwards, which jolts the ankle joint out of place and also overstretches (and perhaps even tears) the ligaments and tendons of the ankles. These tendons also provide the feet with support. It’s important to understand how to best care for a sprained ankle and when you should see a podiatrist for care.
You could be dealing with an ankle sprain if you experience:
- Ankle pain
- Limited range of motion
- Trouble putting weight on the ankle
If you suspect that you have sprained your ankle it’s important to call your podiatrist right away. A foot doctor will be able to discuss your symptoms with you and then determine whether you should come in for an immediate evaluation. A doctor will also provide you with a comprehensive treatment plan that will promote a fast and complete recovery.
There are different degrees of a sprain and the way your podiatrist recommends treating the injury will depend on its severity and the symptoms you are experiencing. Mild sprains can often be managed with simple home treatment. This includes resting and staying off the ankle as much as possible as well as:
- Bandaging or wrapping the ankle
- Wearing an ankle braces
- Using crutches (for more serious sprains)
- Elevating your ankle to reduce swelling
- Stretching and strengthening exercises
- Taking pain relievers like ibuprofen to reduce pain and swelling
- Not putting weight on the ankle
- Icing the ankle 20-30 minutes, 3-4 times a day (for the first 48 hours after injury)
It can take up to 10 days for a mild sprain to heal, while more severe sprains can take several weeks. When you come into the office for an evaluation, your podiatrist will also discuss how long you should stay off the ankle and avoid certain activities.
It is rare for a sprained ankle to require surgery; however, if there is significant damage to the ligaments that could lead to long-term instability and other issues, or if your symptoms do not improve with home care, then your foot and ankle doctor may recommend surgery to repair the torn ligament.
With proper and prompt care an ankle sprain should heal completely and not require additional treatment; however, the minute you experience symptoms of a sprained ankle or ankle injury you should see your podiatrist as soon as possible.
Our feet endure a lot on a daily basis -- walking, running, jumping and even just standing for long periods of time. Many of us increase the strain by wearing high heeled shoes, flip flops or ill fitting sneakers for hours on end. As a result, you may suffer from heel pain, also called plantar fasciitis. If everyday activities are becoming uncomfortable or even unmanageable due to your heel pain, trust in Advanced Foot and Ankle Center, with offices located in McKinney and Prosper, TX.
What can cause heel pain?
Heel pain results when the plantar fascia, which is a thick tissue connecting your heel bone and toes, becomes inflamed or irritated. This can be caused by several habits or activities:
- Wearing unsupportive, improperly sized, high heeled, or poorly made shoes
- Prolonged standing, especially on hard surfaces
- High body weight
- Tight calf muscles
- Flat feet or high arches
- Exercise that puts constant pressure on your feet such as running and jumping
What are the signs of plantar fasciitis?
- Pain on the underside of your foot near or on the heel
- Swelling or stiffness in your heel
- Pain that is most prevalent in the morning hours or upon waking
- Pain that is particularly bad in the morning
- Pain that increases when standing or when carrying heavy items
What can I do to help my heel pain?
The providers at our McKinney and Prosper offices will evaluate your foot pain and discuss your habits and activity level with you to determine the best solution for your heel pain. X-rays of your feet may also be taken. Depending on the cause, severity, frequency, or duration of your heel pain, one or more of the following may be advised:
- Using insoles, either custom made or store bought, in your shoes
- Avoiding or discontinuing wear of high heeled shoes
- Choosing supportive, properly sized footwear, especially for exercising
- Applying ice to the point of pain
- Physical therapy
- Cortisone injections
- Wearing a night splint or brace
- Reaching and maintaining a healthy body weight
- Arch stretches
- Icing of the area
- Choosing low pressure exercises like swimming over running
- Over the counter pain relievers
- Surgery at our McKinney or Prosper locations may be an option if other treatments fail to show results
Don't let heel pain slow you down. Call one of your podiatrists, Dr. Silvers, Dr. Witt, or Dr. Lloyd, at Advanced Foot and Ankle Center in McKinney or Prosper, TX, at (972) 542-2155.
An ingrown toenail is a common foot problem that occurs when the corner of a toenail, usually the big toe, grows into the skin. As you might imagine, this can cause pain and swelling in the affected area. If you are a healthy individual you can often treat the ingrown toenail with simple at-home care; however, patients with diabetes, nerve damage in the feet or signs of a foot infection should always see a podiatrist as soon as possible.
Causes of an Ingrown Toenail
There are several factors that could increase your risk for developing an ingrown toenail. These include:
- Heredity: if your family has a history of ingrown toenails you may be more likely to develop them, too.
- Poorly fitted shoes: shoes that are too tight and cramp up the toes can also cause painful ingrown toenails, particularly in teens whose feet are still growing rapidly
- Improper nail trimming: if you cut your nails too short or if you cut them at an angle rather than cutting them straight across you could be leaving yourself prone to an ingrown toenail
- Injury to the toe: jamming or stubbing the toe can also increase the risk of an ingrown toenail (this is most common in athletes)
Treating an Ingrown Toenail
If there are no signs of an infection (e.g. foul odor; skin that’s hot to the touch) and you are otherwise healthy then you can probably treat the ingrown toenail all by yourself from the comfort of your home. Take frequent Epsom salt soaks and apply an antibiotic cream to the area to prevent infection. Again, if there is no infection you can soak nails for several minutes so that they soften, and then gently clip away the affected area of the nail.
If you are experiencing signs of an infected ingrown toenail or if you have diabetes and develop an ingrown toenail it’s important that you seek a podiatrist’s care right away. A podiatrist can treat the infection while also removing part of or the entire nail so that it grows in properly.
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
While there are certain factors such as heredity that cannot be helped, there are certainly measures you can take to reduce your risk for ingrown toenails. For one, always make sure that you wear properly fitted shoes that do not put pressure on the toes.
Secondly and most importantly, you need to know how to properly trim your toenails. Nails should be level with the tips of your toes. If nails are cut too short or if you trim your nails so they are curved at the edges rather than straight then an ingrown toenail is more likely to develop as the nail grows out.
Athletes should also make sure that they are wearing appropriate footwear for their chosen sport. Not all tennis shoes are created equally so if you have any questions about the footwear that you should wear, don’t hesitate to speak with your foot doctor.
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