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June 2022

Tuesday, 28 June 2022 00:00

Dealing With Hammertoe

One of the most common foot deformities is called a hammertoe. This means the middle joint of the toe pops up instead of lying flat. Hammertoe usually affects the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th toes and can become painful as the protruding joint rubs against the inside of the shoe. Causes of hammertoe vary, but the most common is wearing high-heeled shoes with pointy-toes. Not surprisingly, more women develop hammertoe than men. Trauma from a fall or blow, sprains, or broken toes can all contribute to the formation of a hammertoe as well. They also can be caused by side effects from arthritis, diabetes, and polio. Hammertoe can make it difficult to walk, thereby affecting the gait and causing problems in other parts of the body. If you have developed a hammertoe, please consult with a podiatrist for an examination and possible remedies available to you. 


 

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Jed Wells, DPM of Jed Wells, DPM Foot Specialist. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments that normally hold the toe straight. It can be caused by the type of shoes you wear, your foot structure, trauma, and certain disease processes.

Symptoms

  • Painful and/or difficult toe movement
  • Swelling
  • Joint stiffness
  • Calluses/Corns
  • Physical deformity

Risk Factors

  • Age – The risk of hammertoe increases with age
  • Sex – Women are more likely to have hammertoe compared to men
  • Toe Length – You are more likely to develop hammertoe if your second toe is longer than your big toe
  • Certain Diseases – Arthritis and diabetes may make you more likely to develop hammertoe

Treatment

If you have hammertoe, you should change into a more comfortable shoe that provides enough room for your toes. Exercises such as picking up marbles may strengthen and stretch your toe muscles. Nevertheless, it is important to seek assistance from a podiatrist in order to determine the severity of your hammertoe and see which treatment option will work best for you.

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

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 28 June 2022 00:00

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the tendons, muscles, or ligaments that are responsible for holding the toes in their normal position. This condition may be caused by poor footwear, foot structure, trauma, and disease. The most common solution for hammertoe is to relieve the pain by changing your footwear and wearing orthotics. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

The shoes that are most likely to cause hammertoe are high heeled shoes or shoes that are too tight in the toe box. Tight shoes will force your toes to crowd together in a curled position. This position will likely continue when you take your shoes off. Another cause is trauma. When you stub your toe, you are increasing the chance that you will develop hammertoe.

There are risk factors that may make you more likely to develop this condition. Women are more likely to have the condition compared to men, and it is also more likely to appear in those who are older in age.

Many different foot problems can be avoided by wearing shoes that have adjustability, adequate toe room, and low heels. Furthermore, if you want to buy new shoes, you should look to purchase them at the end of the day and make sure you know your correct size. The importance of buying shoes at the end of the day is that your feet swell as the day progresses. You should also ensure that you are wearing your correct size because your shoe size may change as you grow older.

To diagnose someone with hammertoe, your podiatrist will need to conduct a thorough examination of your foot. Your doctor may even order an x-ray to evaluate the bones and joints of your feet and toes.

If you have hammertoe, your podiatrist may recommend that you wear shoes that fit you better along with inserts to place inside them. Additionally, he or she may suggest special exercises for you to perform to stretch your toes. One helpful exercise it to pick up marbles with your feet or crumple a towel with your toes.

Prior to meeting with your podiatrist, it will be helpful to make a list of all the symptoms you are experiencing. You should also make a note of medications you are taking and important personal information about your medical history.

Published in Featured
Tuesday, 21 June 2022 00:00

Ways to Ward off Amputation

Developing foot ulcers is common among people with diabetes. These can be dangerous if ignored, and in some cases lead to gangrene or even amputation of a limb. Experts believe the best way to avoid these dire complications is to manage blood sugar levels. But other factors contribute to the formation of foot or leg ulcers, which are wounds that do not heal properly. Peripheral artery disease and diabetic neuropathy both can play a role. Numbness and other symptoms brought on by these conditions increase the likelihood of small cuts, sores, and bruises going undetected. Treating ulcers early can help prevent the worst-case scenarios. Practicing healthy foot care is essential. Examine your feet, heels, and ankles daily. Keep them clean, dry, and well moisturized to avoid cracks in the skin. Maintaining healthy body weight, eating nutritious foods, and exercising daily can also help. Look for redness, swelling, discoloration, or bruising. If you notice a cut, sore, or wound that won’t heal, please consult a podiatrist as soon as possible to develop a regular schedule of examination and treatment. 


 

Diabetic Limb Salvage

Diabetic limb salvage can be an effective way in preventing the need for limb amputation. If you have a foot ulcer and diabetes, consult with Jed Wells, DPM from Jed Wells, DPM Foot Specialist. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Diabetic Limb Salvage?

Diabetic limb salvage is the attempt of saving a limb, such as the foot, that has an infected ulcer, from amputation. Podiatrists also try to make sure that there is enough function in the foot after the salvage that it is still usable. Those with diabetes experience poor blood circulation, which prevents proper healing of an ulcer. If the ulcer is left uncheck, it could become infected, which could result in the need for amputation.

Diabetes is the number one cause of non-traumatic amputations in the United States. Amputation has been found to lead to higher mortality rates. This translates into higher healthcare costs, and a reduced quality of life and mobility for amputees. Podiatrists have attempted to increase the prevalence of limb salvage in an attempt to solve these issues.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Limb salvage teams have grown in recent years that utilize a number of different treatments to save the infected limb. This includes podiatrists that specialize in wound care, rehabilitation, orthotics, and surgery. Through a combination of these methods, limb salvage has been found to be an effective treatment for infected limbs, and as an alternative to amputation. Podiatrists will first evaluate the potential for limb salvage and determine if the limb can be saved or must be amputated. 

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

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 21 June 2022 00:00

Diabetic Limb Salvage

Limb salvage is a procedure that involves saving a lower extremity from amputation. In podiatry, limb amputation often occurs as a result of diabetes. The fundamental goal of limb salvage is to restore and maintain stability and movement of the affected lower extremity.

The procedure typically involves removing the diseased tissue and a small portion of the surrounding healthy tissue, as well as the removal of any affected bone if necessary. If bone is removed it is then replaced with prostheses, or synthetic metal rods or plates, or grafts from either the patient’s body or a donor. Limb salvage is typically the preferred choice of procedure over amputation, as the procedure preserves both the patient’s appearance and allows for the greatest possible degree of function in the affected limb.

Upon diagnosis and determining that limb salvage is the appropriate treatment, the podiatrist may enlist the help of a physical and/or occupational therapist to prepare the patient for surgery by introducing various muscle-strengthening, walking, and range of motion exercises. Such exercises may be continued as rehabilitation post-procedure.

Published in Featured
Thursday, 16 June 2022 00:00

Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 14 June 2022 00:00

Ingrown Toenails

An ingrown toenail is a nail that has curved downward and grown into the skin.  This typically occurs at either the nail borders or the sides of the nail.  As a result, pain, redness, swelling, and warmth may occur in the toe.  If a break in the skin forms due to the ingrown nail, bacteria may enter and cause an infection in the area; this is typically characterized by a foul odor and drainage.

Ingrown toenails have multiple reasons for developing.  In many instances, the condition is a result of genetics and is inherited.  The most common cause, however, is improper trimming; cutting the toenails too short forces the skin beside the nail to fold over.  An ingrown toenail can also develop due to trauma, such as stubbing the toe, having an object fall on the toe, or participating in activities that involve repeated kicking or running.  Wearing shoes that are too tight or too short can also cause ingrown toenails.

Treatment for an ingrown toenail varies between patients and the severity of the condition.  In most cases, it is best to see your podiatrist for thorough and proper treatment.  After examining your toe, your podiatrist may prescribe oral antibiotics to clear the infection if one is present.  Surgical removal of either a portion of the nail or the entire nail may also be considered.  In some cases, complete removal or destruction of the nail root may be required.  Most patients who undergo nail surgery experience minimal pain afterward and can return to normal activity the following day.

Ingrown toenails can be prevented with proper nail trimming and by avoiding improper-fitting shoes.  When cutting the toenails, be sure that you are cutting in a straight line and avoid cutting them too short.  Shoes should not be too short or tight in the toe box.

Published in Featured
Tuesday, 14 June 2022 00:00

Babies and Ingrown Toenails

An ingrown toenail can be painful. They can be common among babies and typically affect the big toe. This typically happens as a result of the nail growing into the surrounding skin and may be caused by wearing shoes that are too tight. Babies have soft nails that naturally curl at the edges, and if not frequently trimmed, may develop into an ingrown toenail. Common symptoms that often accompany this condition can include pain when the nail and surrounding area are touched, and the nail may look red or swollen. Mild relief may be felt when the affected foot is soaked in warm water, followed by gently massaging the toe. An effective prevention method may consist of trimming the toenails to the proper length, in addition to refraining from rounding off the corners. If your baby has developed an ingrown toenail, it is suggested you consult a podiatrist who can give you expert advice about prevention methods. 

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Jed Wells, DPM of Jed Wells, DPM Foot Specialist. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

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

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 07 June 2022 00:00

Flat Feet

Flatfoot is a foot condition in which the arch of the foot has either partially or totally dropped or has never developed. While it is common in babies and small children, it can become a problem for them in adulthood if the arch never forms. For adults, the development of flat feet can be brought upon by injury, as a result of pregnancy due to increased elasticity, or obesity. Those who have health concerns such as rheumatoid arthritis or diabetes may also be at greater risk for developing the condition.

If you suspect that you have flat feet, it is best to consult your podiatrist. Your foot doctor will examine the suspected foot and observe how it looks while you sit and stand. He or she may take an X-ray to determine how serious the condition is. Some common signs of flatfoot include toe drift, in which the toes and front part of the foot point outward, a short Achilles tendon, and a heel that tilts outwardly while the ankle tilts inward.

Once flatfoot has been diagnosed, your podiatrist may suggest one of several treatment options. Flat feet can be rigid, in which the feet appear to have no arch even when the person is not standing; or flexible, in which the person appears to have an arch while not standing, but once standing the arch disappears. Those with flexible flatfoot may be told to reduce any activities that cause pain and to avoid extended periods of walking or standing. Another suggestion may be weight loss, as excessive weight may be placing pressure on the arches

In few cases, if the condition is severe and all other methods have been exhausted surgery may be required. This is normally avoided, however, due to a lengthy recovery time and high cost.

Published in Featured
Tuesday, 07 June 2022 00:00

Various Reasons to Have Flat Feet

The foot condition that is known as flat feet is apparent as the patient stands up and the entire foot lies on the floor. The medical term for this ailment is referred to as rigid pes planus, and may cause discomfort. Most babies are born with flexible flat feet, and the arch will fully develop by approximately seven years of age. Adults that have flat feet may have inherited loose ligaments, and may have extreme flexibility throughout their body. Rigid flat foot can be the result of a problem that affects the foot structure. The reasons for this can include congenital vertical talus, in which the bones in the foot are aligned improperly. This is considered to be a rare condition the patient is born with. Tarsal coalition exists when two or more of the foot bones are fused together, and often affects the flexibility of the entire foot. The condition that is known as lateral subtalar dislocation can affect people who have a normal arch, and the bone within the arch becomes dislocated. If you have flat feet for any reason, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can accurately treat this condition.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Jed Wells, DPM from Jed Wells, DPM Foot Specialist. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

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

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