Posts for tag: Dr. Michael Jones
Primer on PAD
Have you experienced any of the following…
- Fatigue/tiredness/pain in your legs that appear when you walk but diminish at rest
- Toe/foot/leg pain that disturbs your sleep
- Open wounds/sores on your toes/feet/legs that are slow to heal?
If you have, chances are you may be one of the approximately 10 million Americans afflicted with PAD (Peripheral Arterial Disease).
Some common risk factors for PAD include the following:
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Physical inactivity
When arteries that supply your heart or brain become blocked, a heart attack or stroke may develop. PAD develops in a similar fashion…your arteries become clogged with plaque (fatty deposits) that limit blood flow to your legs, preventing the delivery of oxygen-rich blood necessary for function and survival. There is a simple, direct correlation: if you have clogged arteries in your legs, you are at risk for having a heart attack or stroke! (in fact, PAD raises your risk 2-6 times for developing a heart attack or stroke)
So how can PAD be detected?
A lot of diseases manifest themselves in the foot. Our podiatrists at Advanced Foot and Ankle Care can order (and perform on site) a simple test to determine if you have PAD. The test is called an ABI, or ankle-brachial index. It compares the blood pressure in your ankles with the blood pressure in your arm. This non-invasive test can be performed at any of our Advanced Foot and Ankle Care locations, including our office in Troy, Ohio in approximately 15-20 minutes during a regular office visit, obviating a need to travel elsewhere to have this test performed.
Oftentimes, PAD can be treated with:
- Smoking cessation
- Blood pressure control
- Lowering cholesterol
- Managing high blood sugar (diabetes)
- Medications to prevent clotting
- Healthy diet
Furthermore, if your ABI is abnormal, timely referrals to cardiovascular specialists (i.e. vascular surgeons) may be warranted to further determine the extent of your PAD.
Please do not ignore leg pain! It is important to discuss any foot, leg or thigh pain that you are having with any of our Advanced Foot and Ankle Care providers, since it could be a warning sign of a serious disease such as PAD. Early detection of PAD can offer an opportunity to treat risk factors that can slow the progression of the disease and potentially decrease your chances of a heart attack or stroke.
“I Sprained My Ankle”
Sprains of the ankle do not discriminate, as they affect the layperson as well as celebrities (former Olympic gymnast Kerri Strug, ‘American Idol’ winner Kelly Clarkson, ‘Dancing with the Stars’ winner J.R. Martinez, and the NBA’s Dwyane Wade to name just a few). Here, at Advanced Foot and Ankle Care, ankle sprains are a far too common condition that many of our patients have been diagnosed with and/or have suffered through. For the sake of brevity, there are 3 common types:
1. Lateral ankle sprain (most common; outside the ankle)
2. Medial ankle sprain (inner side of ankle)
3. High ankle sprain (i.e. above the ankle…rare. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger of
the Pittsburgh Steelers suffered this injury during the 2011 NFL season)
A “sprain” occurs when there is either an abnormal stretching or actual tearing of a ligament, a fibrous tissue that connects’ bone to bone’. Blood vessels around a sprain can subsequently burst, leaking blood and fluid into the surrounding tissues causing bruising and swelling. The nerves around the area will feel this abnormal pressure and become more sensitive, resulting in pain.
Treatment is geared first at “RICE” (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation) therapy and immobilizing or splinting the injury. Depending on the extent of the injury, what usually follows (during the subsequent weeks) is bracing or physical therapy to get you back on your feet as quickly (and safely) as possible. In those unfortunate cases where perhaps chronic pain or instability (ligaments have torn too much and leave the ankle loose and unstable) persists, surgical intervention may be warranted where ligaments can be repaired and/or a minimally invasive “clean out” of a painful ankle joint (i.e. arthroscopy) may be performed. (New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski had arthroscopic surgery on his injured ankle after Super Bowl XLVI)
Oftentimes, sprains that occurred years ago are still painful due to either an inaccurate diagnosis or an incomplete rehabilitation in the first place. Some sprains are severe enough to “strain” or tear the tendons around the ankle. Along with a physical exam, diagnostic modalities such as musculoskeletal ultrasound (available at Advanced Foot and Ankle Care) or even an MRI may be warranted to fully understand the extent of your “sprain” and help guide your rehab. Sometimes, a “sprain” turns out to be more involved, including an actual fracture (i.e. broken bone).
The bottom line is this…pain in and around your foot or ankle is not normal. But, first and foremost, it is imperative that you see an appropriate physician for an accurate diagnosis. Our team at Advanced Foot and Ankle Care are trained and fully equipped to accurately assess and treat these types of injuries. If you’ve had the misfortune of suffering a recent ankle sprain or are still experiencing symptoms from an older injury, contact any of our Advanced Foot and Ankle Care Center locations including our Troy office for an evaluation.