Items filtered by date: February 2012

Every February, New York Fashion Week in New York City brings strange new trends for the people of Columbus and the world to be entertained by. One strange fashion presented at a previous fashion week took the term “pigeon toed” literally by having real stuffed birds positioned as if they were sitting on top of the foot. As a shoe trend, “pigeon toed” may be stylish, but when seen as a walking pattern in children, parents should contact their podiatrist for a checkup as soon as possible.

Kid feet are not simply smaller versions of adult feet. The bones in the legs and feet of a small child are still developing and can sometimes take on an appearance that would be abnormal for an adult, but is normal for a kid. For example, infants can have flat arches that would be abnormal for an adult, but are normal for a for certain periods of childhood development. Walking with the toes turned in toward the midline of the body is the walking pattern commonly referred to as being “pigeon toed” or “in-toeing” and can appear and spontaneously resolve in some children, while in others can be a major cause for concern.

Being pigeon-toed can represent bone deformity in the feet, tibia (or shin bone), or hip. When the foot bones are involved, the condition is typically called “metatarsus adductus”. The metatarsal bones at the base of each toe develop angled toward the midline of the body, commonly as a result of the child’s position while developing in the mother. Treatment can be highly successful if the condition is caught before the infant is two years of age using a series of casts to properly re-align the bones. Custom shoes and orthotics may also be used. When the tibia or hip is rotated towards the midline of the body causing the feet to also appear “pigeon toed” casting or surgery may also be needed as treatment. For all of these conditions, the earlier a parent notices the problem and contacts their podiatrist, the more treatment options will be available. Take care of your little ones’ feet beginning before they begin walking and they can avoid being pigeon toed for a life that will hopefully also be free of wearing pigeon high-heels!

Please visit www.ColumbusFoot.com for more information or call 614-885 FEET (3338) to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist in Columbus, OhioColumbus Podiatry & Surgery is located on the North side of Columbus, Ohio near Worthington.

A new treatment option that may one day be of great help to all those suffering from heel pain in Columbus has been making news for its success in a clinical trial. The study focuses on an injection that shows potential for being used to treat individuals with plantar fasciitis who have not had significant pain relief with other treatments.

Luckily for the time being, patients suffering from plantar fasciitis can visit their podiatrist for a variety of treatment options that, for the majority of individuals, will provide great pain relief. The first step in treating your plantar fasciitis is to determine if you in fact have plantar fasciitis. While plantar fasciitis is one of the more common causes of heel pain, there are many other problems that occur relatively frequently that can also cause heel pain. Some of the cardinal signs of this condition include the most intense pain of the day occurring when you take your first step out of bed in the morning and pain localized primarily to the bottom of the heel, at the front edge of the heel fat pad, on the side closer to the opposite foot. A nerve entrapment can also cause similar pain on the bottom surface of the heel. A nerve entrapment in this area typically involves what is known as “Baxter’s nerve” which supplies sensation and power to a muscle that allows movement to the smallest toe. When the nerve is compressed, it is similar to a bruise and is called neuropraxia. This bruise of the nerve then causes pain and decreases its ability to transfer information. If the entrapped nerve is caught and treated, recovery occurs in around three to four months. In areas around the heel that could cause heel pain in a location very near to the pain of plantar fasciitis also include fractures, and tendonitis.

Once your plantar fasciitis has been correctly diagnosed, there are a variety of treatment paths to begin with. While treatment varies for each individual, most people begin treatment with a conservative approach using the least invasive options available to start. Some of the conservative treatment options include: stretching, taping, icing, and wearing orthotics. All of these treatment options can have great success in many patients if performed correctly. The next step in treatment for plantar fasciitis that has not responded to the previously mentioned treatments can be an injection of a steroid with numbing agents. This is done in addition to continuing conservative treatments. The steroid is injected for its anti-inflammatory properties which serve to “soothe” the aggravated plantar fascia and relieve pain. While surgery would typically be the last treatment resort as a plantar fascia that is still painful, the aforementioned research study provides a potential new option. It has suggested that injecting plasma rich protein actually provides greater pain relief and healing potential than injecting steroids. Hopefully this new research will continue, and the information gained can allow patients to receive the highest quality treatment options from their podiatrist!

Please visit www.ColumbusFoot.com for more information or call 614-885 FEET (3338) to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist in Columbus, OhioColumbus Podiatry & Surgery is located on the North side of Columbus, Ohio near Worthington.

The Patriot’s tight end Rob Gronkowski and his  performance at the Super Bowl should serve as a reminder to all athletes and non-athletes of the impact a few ligaments in your foot can have on your daily activities. Earlier in the season, Rob had suffered one of the most common sports injuries, a severe ankle sprain and like many professional athletes, was willing to sacrifice the health of his feet and body to try to help his team at their biggest game of the year. Luckily, Rob did not suffer any additional injuries while playing football on his already weakened ankle and underwent surgery this past Friday to treat his partially torn ligaments.

Most ankle sprains occur when an individual has their foot in an inverted and plantar flexed position, meaning that the inner arch is lifted off the ground and their toes are flexed towards the ground. Gronkowski’s injury occurred in the opposite of this motion with his foot everted, or with the side of the foot closer to the smaller toes lifted off the ground. When injuries do occur with the foot in this position, damage tends to be more severe with a longer time needed for healing. Although he did not break any bones, Gronkowski is said to have torn two ligaments. While many would people think this should mean faster healing, it is important to remember that while a fracture can take around 6-8 weeks to heal, a damaged ligament also requires six to eight weeks to heal back to good strength.

Ankle arthroscopy was used to surgically stabilize Gronkowski’s torn ligaments. Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgery where a small incision is made that allows a tiny camera and surgical instruments to enter inside the affected joint. This type of surgery was used because the damaged ligaments are intricately connected to not only to the opposing bones of the joint, but also to the capsule surrounding the joint. This type of minimally invasive procedure means a smaller scar, and less wound for bacteria to try to enter. Following this surgery, Gronkowski will be in a cast for about eight weeks to minimize excessive movement of the ligaments and promote healing. This is very similar to bone healing, in which motion also needs to be minimized to prevent a nonunion, or the bone fragments not coming back together.

In the meantime, Gronkowski’s doctor has hopefully gotten him into a physical therapy program to maintain his range of motion and reduce joint stiffness in the future. To lessen the workload of the healed ligaments, orthotics, a brace, or specialized athletic shoes can also be used to increase the stability of the ankle joint after the eight weeks in the boot are completed.

Please visit www.ColumbusFoot.com for more information or call 614-885 FEET (3338) to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist in Columbus, OhioColumbus Podiatry & Surgery is located on the North side of Columbus, Ohio near Worthington.

Monday, 06 February 2012 16:34

Toenail Superstitions for the Super Bowl

New York Giants co-owner has discovered an unusual good luck charm for his team with a little help from his two daughters. In late December, his daughters painted his nails in red and blue, the Giants’ colors, and the team has not lost a game since then. Steve has left the polish on in the hopes that the good luck charm can work its magic for one last game at the Super Bowl.

While his nail polish certainly may not be looking “pedicure perfect” after 5 weeks, the health of Steve’s toes and nails are in no danger as long as he still has been taking regular care of his feet. Pedicures for both men and women can be relaxing and safe for as long as you keep the health of your feet a priority. If Steve decides to keep his trend going there are a few things he should know about the relationship between toenails and overall health. First, nail polish is completely safe to use on healthy toenails. However, if a toenail fungus, or onychomycosis is present, nail polish should not be applied. The polish “locks in” the fungus and allows it to continue thriving on nail tissue. Treatment should be sought when nails appear abnormally thickened or discolored, as this can be a sign of an invasion of “dermatophytes”, the organisms most commonly at the root of a nail fungus. After the nail infection is treated with PinPointe Foot Laser or a variety of other medications and the fungus has resolved, regular nail polish may be applied.

The length of the nail after it has been trimmed can be another area of podiatric problems for those trimming their own nails or having them trimmed at a nail salon. In some individuals, toenails are extremely curved along the sides. When these curved nails are cut too short, the individual’s likelihood of developing an ingrown toenail is greatly increased as the nail regrows. Ingrown toenails can become infected and extremely painful. Contact your podiatrist at the first signs of an ingrown nail. Attempting to remove the ingrown portion of the nail on your own can lead to dangerous infection that is capable of spreading beyond the affected toe.

Whether you are prepping your nails for the big game or a big date before Valentine’s Day be sure to keep your feet healthy and call your podiatrist if you notice any unusual changes!

Please visit www.ColumbusFoot.com for more information or call 614-885 FEET (3338) to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist in Columbus, OhioColumbus Podiatry & Surgery is located on the North side of Columbus, Ohio near Worthington.

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