Items filtered by date: April 2022
Systemic sclerosis (scleroderma), is an autoimmune rheumatic disease that causes contraction, hardening, and scar formation in the skin, tissues, joints, and even organs. Often the first areas of the body to be affected are the feet, hands, and face. When systemic sclerosis affects the feet, it can cause pain, limited mobility, an abnormal gait, deformity in the back of the foot, calcinosis under the skin’s surface, nail changes, as well as a degradation of skin in the foot. A podiatrist is an important part of the medical team that people with systemic sclerosis should consult with regularly to help them manage symptoms and prevent dangerous complications from developing—such as the development of foot wounds and ulcers. If you have been diagnosed with systemic sclerosis, make an appointment with a podiatrist to make sure you are receiving the regular foot assessment and podiatric care you need.
When dealing with systemic disease of the feet, it is extremely important to check the affected areas routinely so that any additional problems are caught quickly. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles contact one of our podiatrists from Manhattan Footcare. Our doctors will assist you with all of your podiatric needs.
Systemic Diseases of the Feet
Systemic diseases affect the whole body, and symptoms usually are displayed in the feet. This condition can make a patient’s ability to walk unbearable. Systemic diseases include gout, diabetes mellitus, neurological disorders, and arthritis.
Gout – is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Common symptoms include pain, inflammation, and redness at the metatarsal/phalangeal joint of the base big toe. Gout can be treated by NSAIDs to relieve pain and inflammation, and other drugs that lower the acid levels in the body.
Diabetes mellitus – is an increase in the level of blood sugar that the body cannot counteract with its own insulin. Failure to produce enough insulin is a factor in Diabetes.
Diabetes of the Feet
Diabetic Neuropathy – may lead to damaged nerves and affect the feet through numbness and loss of sensation.
Peripheral Vascular Disease – can restrict the blood flow to the feet, and often times lead to amputation of the feet.
Swelling in the feet and ankles (edema) is caused by fluid that builds up in these areas. It is often the result of standing or walking for too long, having too much salt in your diet, being overweight, or being pregnant. Several medications, such as steroids, blood pressure meds, contraceptives, and antidepressants, may also cause swelling in the extremities. Other causes include blood clots, kidney or liver problems, bee sting or insect bite, or infection. Symptoms of edema are shiny, red, or stretched skin and puffy feet, ankles, and lower legs. Ways to reduce the swelling include keeping your foot elevated when sitting or lying down, doing simple exercises to encourage blood flow, and wearing wide, comfortable shoes with a low heel and soft sole. If you have frequent bouts of edema, or if the swelling does not recede after a few days, it’s a good idea to check in with a podiatrist for an examination and recommended treatment options.
Everyday foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checked, contact one of our podiatrists from Manhattan Footcare. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Everyday Foot Care
Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. Without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks.
It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before. For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops. Wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent Athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.
There are a number of causes for pain in the ball of the foot, known medically as metatarsalgia. Common causes of metatarsalgia include wearing shoes that are too tight, wearing high heels, and overexercising. Deformities that may cause this condition include high arches, hammertoes, or stress fractures. Different symptoms also may indicate other causes. For example, pain, swelling and bruising after activity may be from a sprained metatarsal (a long bone that connects the toe to the heel). A sharp pain between the toes and the ball of the foot may be the result of Morton’s neuroma. Arthritis can be indicated by a dull aching pain, and a hard bony lump on the big toe may be caused by a bunion. If you are experiencing pain in the ball of the foot that interferes with daily activities, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist as soon as possible for a diagnosis of the problem and options for treatment.
Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with one of our podiatrists from Manhattan Footcare. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.
Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Bone Spurs
- Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
- Ingrown Toenails
- Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
- Flat Feet
- Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
- And more
To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.
Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.
If you are experiencing stabbing or burning nerve pain, numbness, weakness, or tingling in the feet, you may have peripheral neuropathy. Peripheral neuropathy is a dysfunction of the body’s peripheral nervous system, which is outside of the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord). Peripheral neuropathy can be caused by some sort of damage or illness to a nerve (or nerves)—anywhere along the pathway from the spine to the feet—or from spinal problems. It may also be associated with certain medical conditions such as arthritis, Charcot–Marie–Tooth disease, Lyme disease, or shingles. Alcoholism or side effects from certain medications may even damage the peripheral nerves. Peripheral neuropathy should not be taken lightly, as it may lead to the formation of foot ulcers or circulatory disorders, as well as other complications. If you believe you may have peripheral neuropathy, make an appointment with a podiatrist as soon as possible to have your condition diagnosed and treated properly.
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 one of our podiatrists from Manhattan Footcare. Our doctors 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:
- 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.
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.