Tuesday, 09 July 2024 00:00

Heel spurs are calcium deposits that develop on the underside of the heel bone, often without causing any discomfort. However, when the plantar fascia ligament, which connects the heel to the toes, undergoes excessive tension or strain, it can become inflamed. This may lead to a condition known as plantar fasciitis, which can cause the heel spur to press into the swollen ligament and cause significant pain. While heel spurs themselves are generally painless, they frequently accompany plantar fasciitis, with about 70 percent of cases showing the presence of a heel spur. Preventative measures include wearing shoes with proper arch support, using heel pads, maintaining a healthy weight, and performing calf stretches before engaging in strenuous activities. A podiatrist can provide a comprehensive treatment plan tailored to your specific needs, which may include custom orthotics, physical therapy, and recommendations for supportive footwear. Surgery may be needed to address severe cases, though it carries risks such as increased pain, nerve damage, and fallen arches. If you are experiencing heel pain, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist for an exam and treatment.

Heel spurs can be incredibly painful and sometimes may make you unable to participate in physical activities. To get medical care for your heel spurs, contact Kenneth Donovan, DPM from Advanced Care Foot and Ankle. Our doctor will do everything possible to treat your condition.

Heels Spurs

Heel spurs are formed by calcium deposits on the back of the foot where the heel is. This can also be caused by small fragments of bone breaking off one section of the foot, attaching onto the back of the foot. Heel spurs can also be bone growth on the back of the foot and may grow in the direction of the arch of the foot.

Older individuals usually suffer from heel spurs and pain sometimes intensifies with age. One of the main condition's spurs are related to is plantar fasciitis.

Pain

The pain associated with spurs is often because of weight placed on the feet. When someone is walking, their entire weight is concentrated on the feet. Bone spurs then have the tendency to affect other bones and tissues around the foot. As the pain continues, the feet will become tender and sensitive over time.

Treatments

There are many ways to treat heel spurs. If one is suffering from heel spurs in conjunction with pain, there are several methods for healing. Medication, surgery, and herbal care are some options.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our office located in Charleston, SC . We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

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Tuesday, 02 July 2024 00:00

Stress fractures, common to runners and other athletes, result in placing excessive strain on the foot bones. One significant cause of stress fractures is a sudden increase in physical activity, whether it involves frequency, duration, or intensity. Transitioning from soft surfaces such as indoor tracks to harder ones like sidewalks can stress the bones of the feet. Improper technique due to foot conditions like blisters or bunions can also contribute by altering the foot's natural movement patterns and redistributing weight unevenly. Footwear that is poorly fitting, worn-out, or lacking proper support significantly increases the risk of stress fractures. While athletes commonly experience these injuries, non-athletes are also susceptible from extended walking on uneven terrain during vacations. Other risk factors for foot stress fractures, including osteoporosis, which reduces bone density and strength, as well as low vitamin D levels. Female athletes face other risks, possibly due to biomechanical differences, hormonal factors, and nutritional deficiencies. If you are experiencing pain in your foot after activity, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for appropriate testing and treatment options.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact Kenneth Donovan, DPM from Advanced Care Foot and Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

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

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Tuesday, 25 June 2024 00:00

Wearing high heels regularly can lead to various types of foot damage. The unnatural position of the foot in high heels places excessive pressure on the ball of the foot, which can result in metatarsalgia, a painful inflammation of the metatarsal region. High heels also force the toes into a cramped position, often leading to bunions, hammertoes, and other deformities. The elevated heel shifts the body's weight forward, altering posture and putting additional stress on the knees and lower back. This unnatural alignment can cause chronic pain and long-term joint issues. Additionally, the lack of proper support in high heels can contribute to plantar fasciitis, characterized by severe heel pain. The risk of ankle sprains and fractures is also higher due to the instability of walking in high heels. Over time, the cumulative effect of these issues can lead to significant and sometimes irreversible foot and musculoskeletal problems, emphasizing the importance of moderating high-heel use and opting for more supportive footwear. If you have developed foot pain and feel it may be from wearing high heels, it is suggested that you speak to a podiatrist who can offer you treatment solutions in addition to guiding you toward safer footwear.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Kenneth Donovan, DPM from Advanced Care Foot and Ankle. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

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

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Tuesday, 18 June 2024 00:00

Bunion surgery, or a bunionectomy, addresses the painful deformity at the base of the big toe. One common procedure is the realignment of ligaments, which involves adjusting the soft tissues surrounding the joint to correct the toe's position. Another type of bunion surgery is the removal of bone from the end of the first metatarsal bone. This technique reduces the bony bump and realigns the bone to alleviate discomfort. Fusion, or arthrodesis, is a more extensive option where the bones of the big toe joint are fused together. This method provides stability and is often used for severe bunions or arthritis. Each surgical approach aims to relieve pain, improve foot function, and prevent future issues. If you have a bunion that is causing you pain or discomfort, it is strongly suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist who can determine if surgery is right for you.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary to treat a foot ailment. To learn more, contact Kenneth Donovan, DPM of Advanced Care Foot and Ankle. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

When Is Surgery Necessary?

Foot and ankle surgery is generally reserved for cases in which less invasive, conservative procedures have failed to alleviate the problem. Some of the cases in which surgery may be necessary include:

  • Removing foot deformities like bunions and bone spurs
  • Severe arthritis that has caused bone issues
  • Cosmetic reconstruction

What Types of Surgery Are There?

The type of surgery you receive will depend on the nature of the problem you have. Some of the possible surgeries include:

  • Bunionectomy for painful bunions
  • Surgical fusion for realignment of bones
  • Neuropathy decompression surgery to treat nerve damage

Benefits of Surgery

Although surgery is usually a last resort, it can provide more complete pain relief compared to non-surgical methods and may allow you to finally resume full activity.

Surgical techniques have also become increasingly sophisticated. Techniques like endoscopic surgery allow for smaller incisions and faster recovery times.

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

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