Items filtered by date: August 2012

Lance Armstrong is likely feeling some emotional pain this week after receiving a lifetime ban from international cycling competition; however, the longtime champion of the Tour de France has continued to do what he loves by participating in a mountain bike race this past weekend. Throughout the cycling career of Lance, as well as other professional and amateur cyclists, injuries can happen, including those of the foot and ankle. Being able to prevent and identify these injuries will help you to get back in the bike saddle!

Similarly to running, most bicycling foot injuries are due to overuse and repetitive loading of muscles, joints and bones. These types of injuries are accelerated when there is improper alignment of the body during motion, either from naturally occurring deformities within the body or from equipment such as cycling shoes or bicycle setup. Pain in the heel is not uncommon in cyclists.

The repetitive motion of lifting the toes, or dorsiflexing the foot during cycling can lead to Achilles tendonitis due to the passive pull on the tendon. Not only will a tight Achilles tendon become aggravated and painful along the posterior aspect of the heel, but it will contribute to another condition commonly seen in cyclists: plantar fasciitis. Having a very high arched foot or a very flat foot, as well as having the foot in an angled position while pedaling will all contribute to the development of plantar fasciitis. Both Achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis may be relieved by raising the height of the bike seat. This simple adjustment decreases the amount of dorsiflexion required by the ankle joint, thus relieving demands of excessive motion that can lead to heel pain.

Pain in the ball of the foot, or metatarsalgia, is another common complaint in cyclists. This pain is often caused by excessive pressure on the bones in this region of the foot. A few conservative changes that may relieve metatarsalgia include: switching to a less rigid cycling shoe and decreasing pedal resistance. These changes decrease the pressure placed on the ball of the foot and may be helpful in symptom relief.

If simple changes do not alleviate pain while cycling and participating in daily activities, cycling enthusiasts should always contact their podiatrist immediately to receive appropriate treatment and pain relief from injuries.

Please visit 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.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012 17:00


“Kinesiotape” has become a household name around Columbus and the world after the London Olympics. Athletes in a wide variety of sports wore the brightly colored strips of tape on any body part possible with hopes of improving performance. While this special tape may be promising and allow some athlete’s to feel as though their performance is improved with its use, it has not yet been proven to be of great benefit in foot and ankle through clinical studies.

What is the difference between kinesiotape and normal athletic tape?

Kinesiotape, or elastic therapeutic tape is different from the other types of tape your podiatrist may utilize to pain relief and treatment of conditions in the foot. Athletic taping is typically restrictive and limits undesired motion of a joint. Kinesiotape is not utilized for this purpose, but has been marketed as supporting the function of muscles.

How is taping used to treat your foot and ankle?

Traditional taping methods have been successfully used as conservative treatment of plantar fasciitisposterior tibial tendonitis and ankle sprains. Traditional taping may also be used to create a temporary support to determine if custom orthotics will be successful as a permanent conservative treatment of these conditions and many others in the foot.

Kinesiotape has been demonstrated as having only a minor beneficial role in improving strength and range of motion compared to other tapes.

Currently, as the popularity of kinesiotape increases with its use by elite athletes, patients should think twice before splurging on the colorful tape as a treatment of pain in the foot and ankle. Taping of any sort may not be indicated or beneficial in many athletic injuries of the foot and ankle and patients should consult with their podiatrist or other physician at the onset of any painful condition.
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Please visit 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.

Plantar fasciitis knows no boundaries in who it strikes against. Olympic athletes, professional football and baseball players and the average citizen of Columbus can all be struck by this condition and the resulting heel pain that interferes with daily activities. Recently, Philadelphia Phillies player Carlos Ruiz has been placed on the team’s disabled list because his plantar fasciitis was not properly addressed and progressed to a tear. A more successful story of dealing with plantar fasciitis came from British field hockey player Crista Cullen. Crista was able to significantly reduce her heel pain and compete in the Olympics after receiving treatment called extracorporeal shockwave therapy.

Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy or ESWT is used in cases of chronic plantar fasciitis, occurring for six months or more, where more conservative means of treatments have failed to offer substantial pain relief. In ESWT, an electrode is used to generate pulses of high pressure sound, or “shock waves” that travel through the skin to the plantar fascia. No surgical incisions are made in this noninvasive procedure. These shock waves create microdisruptions in the plantar fascia and its attachment to the heel bone in order to stimulate the healing process. Extracorporeal shock wave therapy has been shown to have long term relief of foot pain, and improvement of function in daily life for those suffering from plantar fasciitis.

Prior to reaching the need for ESWT, many patients can find excellent pain relief using conservative means. Rest, icing and stretching of the plantar fascia all serve to decrease symptoms over time. In people who overpronate (or are flatfooted), the flattened arch places additional tension on the plantar fascia, leading to its irritation. In individuals with this foot type, improving the function of the foot through custom functional orthotics can eliminate this underlying cause of plantar fasciitis. At Columbus Podiatry and Surgery, a state of the art foot scanner is used to quickly and accurately develop the mold for an orthotic that will be a perfect fit for each individual foot.

Please visit 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.

For kids in Columbus, summer months mean the best time of the year to play outside from sun up to sun down. The health benefits that come along with the increased activity levels are great for your feet and the rest of your body. In some cases, aches and pains in the feet and legs may develop as kids go from a more sedentary “school year” lifestyle to their high activity level in summer. While mild temporary soreness may be normal, foot pain that is constant, abnormal or affects the child’s daily activities should be examined by your podiatrist.

Heel pain is not only one of the most common complaints in adults, but kids can be similarly affected. In adults, the most common cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis. One major cause of heel pain that is unique to the pediatric age group is called calcaneal apophysitis or Sever’s disease. The calcaneus has a primary and secondary area of growth which creates a growth plate in the back of the bone. This growth plate appears in girls around age four to six years old, and slightly later in boys around seven to eight years old. In Sever’s disease, various factors agitate the growth plate and cause it to become irritated and painful. Increased physical activity that places tension on the Achilles tendon and plantar fascia is one of the main causes of Sever’s disease. Obesity, trauma to the heel bone and diet disturbances also may play a role in the irritation of the calcaneal growth plate.

Children with Sever’s disease will often complain of heel pain occurring more when they are involved in sports activities. Pain will also be felt when the heel is squeezed while the child is standing, bearing weight on the affected limb. Luckily the treatment for this condition alleviates pain and does not involve surgery. Implementation of a stretching regimen for the child, resting for a period of time from sports and custom orthotics are a very effective treatment. In severe cases, a cast may be required. When the growth plate fuses, typically between 12-15 years of age, symptoms should resolve completely. If your child experiences heel pain, be sure to contact your podiatrist for treatment that will allow them to continue enjoying their summer and healthy lifestyle pain free!

Please visit 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 extreme heat plaguing Ohio lately has everyone feeling as though walking outside is more difficult than usual and that slow is the only acceptable pace. Changes in the way you walk develop not only based on external conditions, but can also reflect internal changes in your body. Recent studies presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference this month have suggested that gait changes in the elderly parallel losses in cognitive function. These studies contribute to the long list of medical conditions affecting all parts of the body in which the feet can serve as a window to disease.

The way an individual walks is a function of many different factors. Foot and leg muscles, nerves, bones, arteries and veins are all imperative to foot health and maintaining the normal sequence of walking. In diabetes, both the nerves and vasculature in the foot supply become diseased. When the nerves in the lower extremity are damaged it is called a peripheral neuropathy, because these nerves are not included as part of the central nervous system, which is primarily the brain and spinal cord. Peripheral neuropathies can cause major changes in gait. When the nerves controlling the muscles that lift your foot off the ground stop working a “steppage” gait develops. This style of walking is characterized by lifting the leg high up during the swing of each step to avoid the toes dragging on the ground. When the heel lands back on the ground a loud “foot slap” also occurs. The muscles and nerves that lift your toes up to clear the ground are also responsible for a slow and smooth landing, which when lost, results in the toes “slapping” to the ground. The one advantage of this slap noise is that in those with a peripheral neuropathy who cannot feel their feet land, they can at least hear the landing. This type of gait occurs not only in individuals with diabetes, but also in individuals with sciatica, stroke, multiple sclerosis and spinal stenosis.

When certain parts of the central nervous system are damaged, gait will become slower and less organized. Normal muscle control of the lower extremity is disturbed, resulting in an unsteady, unbalanced walk in which the feet are wide apart. Feet set widely apart provide a large base of gait to help maintain balance. These gait changes are those that have been found to parallel losses in mental function in Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia that typically affect the elderly. While these changes may indicate disease processes in the brain, it is important to differentiate a gait of disease from that of normal aging. It is normal to see some decrease in speed and symmetry of stride with increased age.

Changes in gait at any age can be a sign of problems that should be evaluated by your podiatrist. By addressing these changes, not only may the underlying disease process be appropriately treated, but falls resulting from an unsteady gait may be prevented by utilizing custom orthotics, bracing or custom shoes.

Please visit 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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