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Wednesday, 26 December 2018 00:00

What Is the Definition of Plantar Fasciitis?

There is a portion of tissue that is located on the bottom of the foot, which is referred to as the plantar fascia. The purpose of this tissue is to connect the heel bone to the toes. Severe pain and discomfort may develop in the heel area if the plantar fascia becomes inflamed. It may feel worse in the morning upon arising, and the pain may gradually diminish as the day progresses. This condition is known as plantar fasciitis, and there may be several reasons why this ailment may develop. Common causes may include being obese, which may exert excess weight on the heels, wearing shoes that fit incorrectly, in addition to standing on hard surfaces for extended periods of time. Research has shown there may be gentle stretches that can be performed, which may bring temporary desired relief. If you suspect you may have this uncomfortable condition, it is advised to seek the counsel of a podiatrist as quickly as possible who can perform a correct diagnosis and proper treatment techniques can begin.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

Three Areas of Peripheral Neuropathy

Patients who are afflicted with peripheral neuropathy are typically familiar with a tingling sensation or numbness in their feet that generally accompanies this uncomfortable condition. Additional symptoms may include difficulty in walking, feeling a stabbing pain that may be in the feet, or experiencing muscle weakness. Research has shown the peripheral nerves are categorized into three areas. One group is known as the motor nerves and will affect performing activities that may include walking or picking up an object. Additionally, sensory nerves affect the ability to differentiate between hot and cold, or objects that are smooth or rough. Finally, autonomic nerves control specific functions of the body, which may include digestion, heart rate, and blood pressure. If you are experiencing symptoms in the feet that may indicate neuropathy, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist, so a proper diagnosis can be performed.

Neuropathy

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 Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. 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 trigged by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • 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.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy, whether it be diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, or others, will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment. 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.

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

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Published in Blog
Monday, 10 December 2018 00:00

What Are Flat Feet?

The condition that is referred to as flat feet occurs when the arch of the foot is lower than normal. It may also be known as fallen arches and is typically noticeable when the middle of the foot lies flat on the ground. Most babies are born with flat feet, and normal arches will gradually develop as the child ages. There may be specific medical conditions as to why flat feet may occur in adults and these may include having diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, or cerebral palsy. There may be noticeable symptoms that patients may notice, including pain in the heel and other parts of the foot, which may be a result of the feet adapting to this condition. Treatment methods may include wearing custom-made orthotics, wearing supportive shoes, and performing specific exercises that may improve overall flexibility in the feet. If you have flat feet, it is suggested to speak with a podiatrist who can advise on proper treatment options that are correct for you.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Published in Blog
Monday, 03 December 2018 00:00

Different Types of Foot Surgery

There are several painful and uncomfortable foot conditions that may improve if foot surgery can be performed. If a severe fracture in the foot is experienced and the bone protrudes from the skin, surgery can be an effective way to position the bone back into its correct position. A surgical procedure referred to as joint fusion may be performed to correct bunions or damage that has occurred, which may be a result of arthritis. Additionally, arthroscopic surgery may be useful in removing tissues that have become inflamed in the early stages of arthritis. If you are afflicted with the condition that is known as hammertoe, surgery may be a necessary step in straightening the toes that are bent. If you have uncomfortable heel pain and other treatment methods have been exhausted, surgery may be successful in eliminating or reducing this type of pain. It is advised to consult with a podiatrist if you have foot conditions and may be considering surgery for relief.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary to treat a foot ailment. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists of Berks Foot and Ankle Surgical Associates. Our doctors 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 one of our offices located in Shillington and Hamburg, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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