Posts for: January, 2018
Chilblains occur when the tiny veins called capillaries in your skin become irritated and inflamed after repeat exposure to cold, winter air. Often referred to as pernio, this condition causes red spots and blotches, severe itching, a burning sensation, and swelling and blistering on the hands and feet. Once you develop the condition of chilblains, they often become chronic and occur over a period of many years in correlation with cold weather. The best way to prevent the scourge of chilblains is to try avoiding getting the condition in the first place by dressing warmly and keeping exposed skin covered from exposure to the cold.
Signs and Symptoms of Chilblains include:
- Itching—Small, red, itchy areas on your hands and feet
- Skin color changes—Skin color can change from red to a dark blue with a pronounced increase in pain
- Burning feeling—A sensation of burning on the skin of the feet
- Wounds and blisters—This condition is often accompanied by blisters and small ulcers
Risk Factors for acquiring Chilblains include:
- Geography—People living in areas of high humidity and cold temperatures (but not freezing) are more likely to get chilblains. Chilblains are less likely to occur for people who live in areas where the temperature frequently drops below freezing.
- Tight shoes and clothing—Wearing tight fitting shoes and clothing, especially in a cold, damp environment, can increase the occurrences of chilblains.
- Gender—Women are more prone to developing chilblains, more so than men or kids.
- Circulation—Poor blood circulation can make you more sensitive to temperature fluctuations.
- Raynaud’s disease—is often a precursor to developing chilblains.
When the weather gets warmer, chilblains often get better on their own. However, if the pain persists or if you don’t notice any improvement after two or three weeks, you should check with your doctor to eliminate any other possible causes. If you have diabetes, you need to be especially watchful for skin wounds and blistering since they may develop into infections leading to possible amputation.
If you suspect that you may be suffering from chilblains on your feet, consult with our board certified podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Center of Fort Lee, LLC. The center offers convenient locations in Fort Lee NJ, Ringwood NJ, Flushing Queens NY, Woodhaven NY, Brooklyn NY, and Forest Hills NY. Contact us at (201) 363-9844 and schedule an appointment today!
The tarsal tunnel is a channel that exists in between part of your ankle bone and a bevy of ligaments that span across your foot. This tunnel carries the nerves, tendons, and arteries that allow you to use your foot. One of the main nerves inside the tarsal tunnel is the tibial nerve, which is necessary for providing feeling to the bottom of your foot. This nerve can become inflamed and irritated due to excessive pressure causing the condition known as tarsal tunnel syndrome (TTS).
Diseases or injuries that may produce the pressure that initiates this disease include:
● A varicose vein or bone spur
● Swelling due to an ankle injury
● Arthritis and diabetes
● Flat feet or fallen arches
Some of the symptoms of TTS include the following:
● Foot numbness
● Tingling or burning sensation
● Shooting pain
A diagnosis of tarsal tunnel syndrome is often a difficult matter due to the fact that other conditions can cause similar symptoms, so it is very important to consult with your podiatrist to devise the most efficacious treatment plan. Your foot doctor will perform a complete clinical exam followed by imaging studies (X-ray, CT or MRI), and electrical testing such as EMG or nerve conduction studies may be required to confirm this diagnosis.
Non-surgical treatment options include:
● Steroid injections
● NSAIDS for pain and inflammation
● Braces, splints and orthotic inserts to reduce the pressure on the nerve
In difficult cases where conservative treatments do not relieve pain and discomfort, you may require the intervention of a skilled foot doctor to surgically release the pressure on the nerve.
If you suspect that you may have tarsal tunnel inflammation, consult with our board certified podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Center of Fort Lee, LLC. The center offers convenient locations in Fort Lee NJ, Ringwood NJ, Flushing Queens NY, Woodhaven NY, Brooklyn NY, and Forest Hills NY. Contact us at (201) 363-9844 and schedule an appointment today!
Corns and calluses are thick layers of skin that most commonly form on your hands, feet, fingers and toes. When they appear on your feet, it is usually the result of excess friction and pressure created by badly fitting footwear. Calluses, which tend to be bigger than corns, are commonly located on the bottoms of the feet, in the sole or ball area. They feel very rough and hardened, whereas corns are usually much smaller and usually contain a hard center surrounded by tender and swollen skin.
In either case, the treatment options are similar and may consist of the following:
- Padding and protective insoles can provide relief.
- Try pumice stones or emery boards to help safely remove dead skin.
- As much as possible, try to decrease the repetitive action that may have caused them.
- Avoid tight footwear that creates excess pressure, or loose fitting shoes that may cause rubbing and irritation.
- Wear socks with your shoes and sandals as much as possible to decrease excess friction.
- Application of salicylic acid liquid or patches may be used to help dissolve the hardened skin.
- Soaking the skin prior to acid application makes these removal methods more effective.
Individuals with diabetes, foot deformities, or other health problems that can cause decreased blood flow or numbness, need to be very careful when attempting to remove corns and calluses. It is always best to consult with a podiatrist before attempting any treatment on your own to help avoid any complications that may be caused by excessive bleeding or infection. Even a small cut can quickly turn into a serious issue that could even lead to amputation.
If you need assistance caring for your corns and calluses, consult with our board certified podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Center of Fort Lee, LLC. The center offers convenient locations in Fort Lee NJ, Ringwood NJ, Flushing Queens NY, Woodhaven NY, Brooklyn NY, and Forest Hills NY. Contact us at (201) 363-9844 and schedule an appointment today!
If you are experiencing pain in your foot without an obvious cause, you may have suffered a stress fracture. The pain can tend to come and go, and often is increased during specific foot movements. Stress fractures are very small cracks in the bone that are caused by the repeated stress and pressure to the foot that comes with exercise and sporting activities. Bone deterioration from osteoporosis can also increase the likelihood of a stress fracture.
Other factors that can increase the possibility of stress fractures to the feet include:
- Calcium and vitamin D deficiency—Your bones need adequate vitamin D and calcium for proper growth. Bone weakening from lack of these nutrients can increase the chances of a stress fracture.
- Arch abnormalities—Individuals with rigid arches or flat feet are more susceptible to stress fractures in the feet, so be sure to have any arch problems corrected with the help of your foot doctor.
- Starting an exercise program too rapidly—Sometimes the sudden jolt to your bones of starting a new exercise program can be enough to cause a stress fracture. Always start off slowly, and gradually increase your strength and endurance to ward off stress fractures and a host of other foot problems.
Stress fracture pain will often gradually increase during activity and subside when the stress and weight is taken off the foot. There may also be bruising and swelling in the area of the pain. Stress fractures can be difficult to diagnose and treat properly, and proper treatment is essential to ensure that the bone heals correctly and does not adversely affect your foot mechanics.
If you suspect that you may have suffered a stress fracture to your foot, consult with our board certified podiatrists at Foot and Ankle Center of Fort Lee, LLC. The center offers convenient locations in Fort Lee NJ, Ringwood NJ, Flushing Queens NY, Woodhaven NY, Brooklyn NY, and Forest Hills NY. Contact us at (201) 363-9844 and schedule an appointment today!