Posts for: May, 2012
As warm weather approaches, women (and even a growing number of men, like NFL stars Tim Tebow and Victor Cruz) are getting pedicures to improve the way their feet look. For those who opt to get a salon pedicure, we at Advanced Foot & Ankle Care want you to keep three things in mind to have your feet looking and feeling their best all summer long.
Bring Your Own Tools
Unfortunately, not all tools at nail salons are sterilized properly. For this reason, one of the best things you can do to protect yourself at nail salons is to invest in your own set of tools. By bringing your own set of tools, you can decrease the risk of infection since these instruments haven’t been used on anyone else. If you do not wish to invest in your own kit, do make sure that the tools they are about to use have been sterilized.
Only Cut Nails Straight Across
Make sure that your technician uses a toenail clipper that has a straight edge and cuts your toenails straight across. This is also a good practice to keep at home if you ever cut your own toenails, as cutting them straight across helps prevent painful ingrown toenails. If you are experiencing an ingrown toenail, avoid the salon and make an appointment to have it examined by one of our podiatrists.
Only Color Healthy Nails
If your nails look healthy, feel free to have them painted. However, if your nails are yellow, thick, or brittle, do not try to cover them up with nail polish. Since these are symptoms of nail fungus, call any of our offices: Huber Heights, Troy, Piqua and Sidney, to make an appointment to have them examined by one of our physicians. We at Advanced Foot & Ankle Care have a wide variety of treatment options, including our Cutera Laser, which can kill fungus without damaging the surrounding tissue.
Warts are the 2nd most common dermatologic problem. The only thing seen more often by dermatologists is acne. It affects 10% of children most commonly seen in ages 12-16. They are only slightly less common in adults at 7-10%.
Who gets them?
Anyone can get them, but some people are more susceptible. Children between 12 and 16 are most affected by plantar warts because they're more likely to go barefoot in public areas. The virus that causes plantar warts can enter the body through a cut or small abrasion on the foot. In addition, those who have undergone an organ transplant or chemotherapy are at risk because their immune systems are compromised. They can also spread from one family member to another if the carrier doesn't wear shoes or slippers indoors.
What are they?
Warts are small, rough lumps on the skin that are benign (non-cancerous). They often appear on the hands and feet and can look different depending on where they appear on the body and how thick the skin is. A wart on the sole of the foot is called a verruca.A wart is caused by the Human Papillomavirus(HPV), which causes the top layer of skin to thicken in a small area. Some warts stay small, but they can grow quite large and cluster an entire area of the foot if left untreated.
The appearance of each type of wart will depend on several factors:
-- Where it is located on your body
-- The strain (type) of HPV that is responsible for the wart
-- Factors such as whether you have a weakened immune system
-- Whether you have rubbed or knocked the wart
How do you treat warts?
There are several over-the-counter topical treatments that all have the same degree of efficacy. Most of these products are designed to eat away at the dead dry layers of the wart and the surrounding skin.
The doctors at Advanced Foot & Ankle Care have a number of treatment methods to their disposal. The treatment used varies on where the wart is located, the age of the patient, and the patients’ expectations. If a topical agent is used, many applications may be required over the course of several but the technique is highly successful. The most successful treatment is with the use of a CO2 laser to destroy the wart. Each of our 4 office locations, including our Piqua office, has one of these lasers.
Since certain HPV types are oncogenic (able to produce invasive malignant cancers), it is possible that plantar warts can rarely become invasive malignancies. Any wart-like lesion on the sole of the foot that does not resolve after appropriate therapy and continues to enlarge should be biopsied and examined by a pathologist. Warts can grow back. This indicates a virus is still in the body and growing. However, this is not cause for undue alarm. The virus that causes plantar warts is relatively harmless and causes few problems.
For any questions, contact Advanced Foot and Ankle Care at any of our 4 office locations.
Steven Tyler, of Aerosmith and American Idolfame, is a famous sufferer of a common foot problem known as a neuroma. A neuroma is a thickening of a nerve as a response to irritation, and can be very painful. Most people with this condition describe pain or tingling between their toes, most commonly between the third and fourth toes. The pain can also affect the ball of the foot, and usually gets worse when bearing weight on this area.
One of the most common causes of a neuroma is shoe choice. Women are more likely than men to develop a neuroma, due to wearing high-heeled shoes. These types of shoes crowd the toes together, and cause the nerves of the feet to become “pinched”. This pinched nerve will thicken due to pressure, and will cause pain. Because of this, switching to more sensible shoes, such as shoes with a low heel and wide toe box, is recommended.
Shoe choice is not the only to blame, as those with flat feet or high arches are more likely to develop neuromas. Neuromas can also be associated with bunions, hammertoes, and other foot deformities. Custom orthotics can help correct some of these problems, and thus decrease the chance of developing a neuroma.
For our patients at Advanced Foot and Ankle Care in Sidney, Ohio, with a neuroma, we recommend orthotics and three steroid injections over three weeks to take pressure off the affected area and get rid of the pain. This course of treatment works for the majority of our patients, but for the rest we prescribe an anti-inflammatory drug and recommend wearing a night splint for an hour a day.
In rare cases where these other treatments don’t fully get rid of the pain, we may recommend surgery to remove a portion of the irritated nerve. In this case, we will use your own stem cells taken from your blood to speed the healing process.