Tuesday, 28 June 2022 00:00

When the nerves in the extremities – commonly the feet – are damaged, it results in a condition known as peripheral neuropathy. Symptoms include numbness, tingling and burning pain. It can also affect your balance, coordination, and muscle strength. The numbness makes it difficult to notice sores and cuts on your feet that can develop into ulcers, or even gangrene. In rare cases, neuropathy has no recognizable cause, known as idiopathic neuropathy. But the most common cause of peripheral neuropathy is thought to be diabetes. High levels of blood sugar can damage the blood vessels that supply the nerves. The likelihood of developing this condition further increases with age, alcohol use, and smoking. Other factors that may contribute to peripheral neuropathy include low levels of vitamin B12, trauma to the nerves after surgery, an underactive thyroid gland, and genetics. In addition, certain infections, such as shingles, Lyme’s disease, and HIV may be causes as well. If you have peripheral neuropathy, please make an appointment with a podiatrist for regular examinations of your feet and treatment options.

Neuropathy

Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with Dan Kirk, DPM from Bluffton Foot & Ankle. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What Is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

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

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Tuesday, 21 June 2022 00:00

Ingrown toenails are often painful. They typically develop due to wearing shoes that do not fit correctly and this can force the nail to grow into the surrounding skin. Furthermore, they can occur by improperly trimming the toenails or result from a toe injury. In addition to pain, this condition can be accompanied by swelling, redness, and pus that may drain from the affected toe. Some patients can find mild relief by soaking the foot in warm water and using a piece of cotton to push the skin away from the nail. This is considered to be temporary, and will most likely need professional attention soon after. An ingrown toenail may be more common in adults than children as well as people who have curved or thick nails. If you have symptoms of this condition, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dan Kirk, DPM of Bluffton Foot & Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

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

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Tuesday, 14 June 2022 00:00

 

Many elderly people endure foot pain, which may impact mobility and completing daily activities. Research has shown there may be increased soft tissue stiffness in the foot, in addition to having a limited range of motion as one ages. With advanced age, the foot can lose overall strength and may become protonated as a result of reduced joint mobility. The risk of falling may increase, foot pain may develop, and it may be difficult to complete weight bearing activities. Approximately one in five people lose the ability to leave their house because of devastating foot pain. The skin may change thickness, and can add friction to the feet while walking. Recent reviews have confirmed the overall loss of elastin, which can result in thicker and dryer skin on the skin. In summation, the skin condition and foot structure may change in elderly feet, and may cause foot conditions that did not exist in their youth. If you would like more information about how the feet change as the aging process occurs, please consult with a podiatrist.

If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dan Kirk, DPM from Bluffton Foot & Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Biomechanics in Podiatry

Podiatric biomechanics is a particular sector of specialty podiatry with licensed practitioners who are trained to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and lower leg. Biomechanics deals with the forces that act against the body, causing an interference with the biological structures. It focuses on the movement of the ankle, the foot and the forces that interact with them.

A History of Biomechanics

  • Biomechanics dates back to the BC era in Egypt where evidence of professional foot care has been recorded.
  • In 1974, biomechanics gained a higher profile from the studies of Merton Root, who claimed that by changing or controlling the forces between the ankle and the foot, corrections or conditions could be implemented to gain strength and coordination in the area.

Modern technological improvements are based on past theories and therapeutic processes that provide a better understanding of podiatric concepts for biomechanics. Computers can provide accurate information about the forces and patterns of the feet and lower legs.

Understanding biomechanics of the feet can help improve and eliminate pain, stopping further stress to the foot.

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

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Thursday, 09 June 2022 00:00

Gout is a painful, inflammatory form of arthritis. Those affected will typically feel an intense stiffness in the joints of their feet, particularly in the big toe. Schedule a visit to learn about how gout can be managed and treated.

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