Items filtered by date: August 2021

The plantar fascia is a long band of thick ligament on the bottom of the foot which connects the heel bone with the toes. Overuse during athletic activities or exercising/working on hard surfaces can damage the plantar fascia. Wearing ill-fitting shoes, gaining weight rapidly, or having flat feet or a tight Achilles tendon can also stress or tear the plantar fascia, causing it to become inflamed and painful. When this occurs, it is known as plantar fasciitis. People with plantar fasciitis usually experience pain on the bottom of the heel, however it can be felt anywhere in the heel. This pain may be dull or sharp, and it is at its worst first thing in the morning, after periods of rest or intense activity. Accompanying symptoms may include a tightness or stiffness in the heel or Achilles tendon, or a swollen heel. Since leaving the condition untreated may lead to chronic plantar fasciitis, professional care from a podiatrist is suggested for treatment.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM  from Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

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

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Tuesday, 24 August 2021 00:00

What You Need to Know About Cuboid Syndrome

The cuboid bone is one of seven tarsal bones in the foot. It is located on the outside of the foot, midway between the heel and the pinky toe. Cuboid syndrome occurs when this bone becomes dislocated from overuse or from an injury such as a sprained ankle. It may also be caused by foot conditions such as pronated feet. Cuboid syndrome often affects dancers, athletes, and runners. Pain can be felt in various parts of the foot—often in the middle of the foot or at the base of the two smaller toes, or elsewhere in the foot or ankle. Other symptoms may include difficulty walking, swelling, and reduced range of motion in the ankle and foot. Because it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly where the pain is emanating from, it is important to have your foot examined and properly diagnosed by a podiatrist if you are experiencing any of the symptoms in order to recieve proper treatment.

Cuboid syndrome, also known as cuboid subluxation, occurs when the joints and ligaments near the cuboid bone in the foot become torn. If you have cuboid syndrome, consult with Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM from Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Cuboid syndrome is a common cause of lateral foot pain, which is pain on the outside of the foot. The condition may happen suddenly due to an ankle sprain, or it may develop slowly overtime from repetitive tension through the bone and surrounding structures.

Causes

The most common causes of cuboid syndrome include:

  • Injury – The most common cause of this ailment is an ankle sprain.
  • Repetitive Strain – Tension placed through the peroneus longus muscle from repetitive activities such as jumping and running may cause excessive traction on the bone causing it to sublux.
  • Altered Foot Biomechanics – Most people suffering from cuboid subluxation have flat feet.

Symptoms

A common symptom of cuboid syndrome is pain along the outside of the foot which can be felt in the ankle and toes. This pain may create walking difficulties and may cause those with the condition to walk with a limp.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of cuboid syndrome is often difficult, and it is often misdiagnosed. X-rays, MRIs and CT scans often fail to properly show the cuboid subluxation. Although there isn’t a specific test used to diagnose cuboid syndrome, your podiatrist will usually check if pain is felt while pressing firmly on the cuboid bone of your foot.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are ice therapy, rest, exercise, taping, and orthotics.

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

 

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Tuesday, 17 August 2021 00:00

What is PAD (Peripheral Artery Disease)?

Millions of people in the United States suffer from peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is a narrowing of the arteries in the extremities and other areas of the body (excluding the heart and brain). PAD is most typically caused by an accumulation of fatty material in the arteries (atherosclerosis). PAD can restrict blood flow to the legs and feet where symptoms are often present, including: cold feet, a loss of hair on the legs and feet, skin that has a shiny appearance, toenails that are brittle or grow slowly, sores on the feet or legs that don’t heal, weakness in the legs, difficulty finding a pulse in the foot or leg, and more. It is important to be properly diagnosed and treated early to avoid more dangerous conditions from developing and to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack. If you are exhibiting any of the symptoms described, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist as soon as possible.

Peripheral artery disease can pose a serious risk to your health. It can increase the risk of stroke and heart attack. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, consult with Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM from Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is when arteries are constricted due to plaque (fatty deposits) build-up. This results in less blood flow to the legs and other extremities. The main cause of PAD is atherosclerosis, in which plaque builds up in the arteries.

Symptoms

Symptoms of PAD include:

  • Claudication (leg pain from walking)
  • Numbness in legs
  • Decrease in growth of leg hair and toenails
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Sores and wounds on legs and feet that won’t heal
  • Coldness in one leg

It is important to note that a majority of individuals never show any symptoms of PAD.

Diagnosis

While PAD occurs in the legs and arteries, Podiatrists can diagnose PAD. Podiatrists utilize a test called an ankle-brachial index (ABI). An ABI test compares blood pressure in your arm to you ankle to see if any abnormality occurs. Ultrasound and imaging devices may also be used.

Treatment

Fortunately, lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, managing cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and quitting smoking, can all treat PAD. Medications that prevent clots from occurring can be prescribed. Finally, in some cases, surgery may be recommended.

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

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Wednesday, 11 August 2021 00:00

Foot Care for Dry, Cracked Heels

Dry, cracked heels can be annoying to deal with on a daily basis. They can even be painful when left untreated. Cracked heels are often caused by a lack of moisture and this can result from cold winter weather, dehydration, exposing your feet to hot water for prolonged periods of time, or scrubbing your feet while they are dry. Certain skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis, can also make the heels very dry. Having a good foot care regiment at home can help alleviate dry, cracked heels. Your foot care routine may include soaking the feet in warm water, exfoliating the heels with a pumice stone, thoroughly drying your feet with a towel, and then applying a heavy moisturizing cream. If the cracks on your heels become so deep that they bleed, these are known as fissures and can lead to an infection. When your cracked heels are painful, bleeding, or if you have diabetes, it is strongly suggested that you see a podiatrist for treatment. 

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM from Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

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

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Tuesday, 03 August 2021 00:00

What Causes Heel Pain?

Heel pain can have a variety of causes that range from bone damage like a bone bruise or stress fracture, to structural issues like plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis. Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of heel pain, and this occurs when the plantar fascia, which connects the heel to the toes along the bottom of the foot, becomes inflamed or torn. Children who are experiencing heel pain may be suffering from Sever’s disease. Sever’s disease occurs in active teenagers when the growth plate in the heel becomes inflamed. Patients who are struggling with heel pain should consult with a podiatrist for diagnosis. Upon diagnosis, a proper treatment method will be provided by your podiatrist.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM of Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Philadelphia, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Although flip-flops are popular for the summer, it's important to walk carefully while wearing them. Flip-flops have little to no foot support, which can further lead to a potential injury if not careful.

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