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goutNew Zealand’s University of Otago’s Prof. Lisa Stamp conducted research that focused on gout patients and their Vitamin C intake. The study found that Vitamin C did not lower urate levels to a ‘clinically satisfactory degree’. The test was conducted for eight weeks.

 “Though Vitamin C may reduce risk of developing gout, our data does not support using Vitamin C as a therapy to lower uric acid levels in patients with established gout,” Prof. Stamp said. While Vitamin C can still lower the risk of developing gout, it is not a method for treating or curing the disease.

Gout is a painful condition that necessitates proper care. If you believe you are suffering from gout, you should seek out the care of one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists diagnose your condition as well as provide you with treatment options that work for you.  

Systemic Diseases of the Foot

Systemic diseases affect the whole body, and symptoms usually are displayed in the feet. This condition can make a patient’s ability to walk unbearable.

Gout – is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Some common symptoms include pain, inflammation, and redness at the metatarsal/phalangeal joint of the base big toe. Gout can be treated by NSAIDs, which relieves pain and inflammation and other drugs which lowers the acid levels in the body.

Diabetes mellitus- is an increase in the level of blood sugar in which the body cannot counteract with the insulin in the body. When the body doesn’t produce enough insulin this is a factor in Diabetes.

Diabetes of the Feet
Diabetic Neuropathy – may lead to damaged nerves and affect the feet through numbness and loss of sensation.
Peripheral Vascular Disease- can restrict the blood flow to the feet, and often times lead to amputation of the feet. 

If you have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Walking and ExercisingUniversity of Calgary scientists want to build the perfect running shoe through studying the effects of comfort and its effect on the rates of injury. Even though the idea of the perfect running shoe has circulated for years, modern schools of thought claim that shoe design has no effect on the rate in which running injuries occur.

Advocates of the ‘comfort theory’ suggest that people should just go with the pair of running footwear that feels best for them. The scientific team still wants willing participants for their study, hoping to learn more through research.

For help with selecting an appropriate shoe size, consult with one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists can measure your feet to determine what your needs are and help you find an appropriate pair of footwear.

Getting the Right Shoe Size

Sometimes it may be difficult finding the right shoe size especially because shoe sizes tend to vary depending on the brand and company you are looking for. A size 6 for one brand may be a size 7 in another. Although many people know their exact shoe size, it can range within 2 sizes depending on where they shop.

So it is important not to always go for a size 7 just because you think you might be a size 7 universally. It is best to try on the shoe and walk around for a bit to see how it fits and how it feels. Comfort is essential and the fitting has to be well otherwise it can lead to blisters, bruises at the back of the ankle and it can also hurt your toes if the shoe is too tight for example.

People walk a lot, so it is important for you to find what is comfortable when it is possible.

For more information about Getting the Right Shoe Size, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Choosing the Right Running Shoes

Thursday, 13 November 2014 00:00

The Correct way to Trim an Ingrown Toenail

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 In a recent study physicists of the University of Nottingham in England took a closer look at the mechanical forces that act on fingernails and toenails—particularly the outward growth of the nail. Researchers have found that ingrown toenails form because of an imbalance in the forces acting on them from nail growth. Nails that grow too quickly tend to have a nail edge that becomes more curved, which in turn makes it more likely for the far edges of the nail to poke down into the skin beside the nail—creating an ingrown nail. To combat ingrown nails, cut nails into a parabolic or oval shape rather than straight across at the end of the nail. Using this method will cause the forces acting on the nail and nail bed to balance, preventing the growth of ingrown nails.


Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are left unattended. To learn more, consult with one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists will provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.


Ingrown Toenails Causes
Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.
There are a number of risk factors for ingrown toenails. Some include cutting your nails too short, participating in strenuous sports, diabetes, obesity, and fungal infection. Some are genetically predisposed to ingrown nails, although wearing ill-fitting or damp shoes can exacerbate the problem.


Treatment
There are a number of steps you can take to treat ingrown nails:
-Let your toenails grow out
-Soak the toes in hot water with antibiotic soap or Epsom salts
-Placing a piece of cotton under the affected nail may allow the toe to grow up instead of into the nail bed
-Rest with your feet up

 

If however, your pain is severe, or you see red streaks running up your leg, you should see a podiatrist. Your podiatrist may make a small incision and remove part of the toe nail to relieve the pressure. A local anesthetic may be used to lessen the discomfort of the operation.  Topical medication may also be prescribed to prevent the regrowth of the problem nail.


If you have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.


Read more about Ingrown Toenails

study 2 To avoid the possible side effects that accompany prescription drugs, natural remedies are available for use to treat Athlete’s foot. Apple cider vinegar or tea tree oil can be rubbed directly onto areas affected by Athlete’s foot. To create a solution to soak your feet in, mix one part white vinegar and two parts warm water. Soak the feet in this for fifteen minutes. Similarly, garlic can be grinded into a fine paste, mixed into a tub of water, and used as a fifteen-minute soak for the feet. Another remedy can be found in neem leaves, which can be boiled in water for ten minutes. After the water has cooled, wash feet twice a day in the solution to treat Athlete’s foot.

Athlete’s foot can be treated successfully using any of the aforementioned methods. If you would like assistance with the treatment of Athlete’s foot, consult with one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs and answer any of your related questions.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

If you suffer from itching, burning, dry, and flaking feet, this may be a sign of athlete's foot. Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be extremely contagious, and it often infects shower floors, gyms, socks and shoes, and anywhere else feet may come in contact with. It is commonly found in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

- Hydrate your feet by using lotion
- Exfoliate
- Buff off nails
- Use of anti-fungal product
- Examine feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts are present.

What is Tinea?

- Athlete’s foot is often caused by the same fungus that causes ringworm (tinea).
- Tinea can invade other parts of the body as well, if the proper thriving conditions for it are met.
- Tinea thrives in mostly dark, warm and moist environments.
- Although many people never experience athlete’s foot, around 70% of the population may suffer from tinea at some point.

For more information about Athlete’s Foot, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Athlete’s Foot

chocolateScientists at Sapienza University conducted a study with some rather delicious results. The university’s scientists discovered that polyphenols found in dark chocolate can increase blood flow. This increased blood flow happens to be quite beneficial for patients suffering from peripheral artery disease (PAD).

 Half of the study’s subjects were provided 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate and the other half given 1.5 ounces of milk chocolate by researchers. Researchers observed the effects as patients walked on treadmills for a set period of time. The results showed that the group that had been given the dark chocolate was able to walk 11% farther and demonstrated improved circulation in their extremities.
Poor circulation in the feet is often very uncomfortable. If you are struggling with poor circulation, contact one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists can treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. It usually restricts the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development.
It can also cause:

-muscle pain    -numbness in legs
-cramps            -skin discoloration
-weakness        -slower nail & hair growth
-stiffness         -erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes and or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, or who are over 50.
If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD, and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always see a doctor as they will help try and fit a regime that suits you. A doctor will also prescribe you medication which will help for PAD.  

If you have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Wednesday, 22 October 2014 00:00

Runners May Reduce Tendon Injuries with Orthotics

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Dr. Jonathan Sinclair of the University of Central Lancashire participated in a study concerning runners and Achilles tendon injury. The study found that people who wear orthotics while running could prevent the possibility of Achilles injury. Sinclair used 12 male participants and had them run on a mat with sensors that measured the movement of the foot. 

The study showed that the runners wearing the orthotics were less apt to Achilles tendon injury because of the ease of pressure the insoles provided to the foot. “This probably happens because orthotics offer further cushioning to that already provided by the shoe midsole,” Dr. Sinclair said.

Achilles tendon injuries can be very painful. If you think you have this kind of condition, pay a visit to podiatrist one of our podiatrists of Foot and Ankle Medical Clinic. Our doctors can treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body, and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can cause severe difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What are the symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon. 

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

- Inflammation
- Dull to Severe Pain
- Increased blood flow to the tendon
- Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

- Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
- Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation. Often the doctor will order an MRI to confirm the diagnosis. Treatment will involve rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries.

For more information about Achilles Tendon Injuries, follow the link below.

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

Read more about Achilles Tendon Injuries

Wednesday, 15 October 2014 00:00

Sport Specialization Should Not Begin During Childhood

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Severs disease is a common condition that often affects physically active children and teenagers. In order to prevent the onset of Severs Disease, it is best to  withhold specialization in a single sport at too young an age. It is generally encouraged to wait until adolescence to begin specializing in any sport.  

This information comes from the growing number of children attempting to specialize at younger ages. Sever’s disease is a common foot condition that occurs in growing children, and manifests as the inflammation of the heel’s growth plate. The best age to begin specialization is said to be fifteen.

While Sever’s disease is a foot condition of concern, it is quite common in growing children. If you think your child is suffering from Sever’s disease, see Dr. Michael Stein of Foot Doctor of the East Bay. Dr. Stein can treat all of your foot and ankle needs and provide you with quality treatment. 

Sever’s Disease

Sever’s disease is also known as calcaneal apophysitis, which is a medical condition that causes heel pain I none or both feet. The disease is known to affect children between the ages of 8 and 14.

Sever’s disease occurs when part of the child’s heel known as the growth plate (calcaneal epiphysis) is attached to the Achilles tendon. This area can suffer injury when the muscles and tendons of the growing foot do not keep pace with bone growth. Therefore, the constant pain which one experiences at the back of the heel will make the child unable to put any weight on the heel. The child is then forced to walk on their toes.

Toe gait- develops in which the child must change the way they walk to avoid placing weight on the heel. This can lead to other problems as well in the future.

Symptoms

Acute pain – pain asscoiatied with Sever’s disease is usually felt in the heel when the child engages in physical activity such as walking, jumping and or running.

Highly active – children who are very active are among the most susceptible in experiencing Sever’s disease, because of the stress and tension placed on their feet.

For more information about Sever’s Disease, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices in San Leandro, Pleasanton, and Los Gatos, CA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Sever’s Disease

Thursday, 09 October 2014 00:00

Orthopedic Surgeon’s High Heels offer Foot Support

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There now exists high heels that are comfortable for women to wear on their feet, and they have reportedly been created by ex-orthopedic surgeon Dr. Taryn Rose. The 47-year-old has already built a $40 million business with her shoe collection and has now launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund what she calls ‘wing shoes’. The collection, entitled Enrico Cuini for DRESR, has specially constructed carbon fiber ‘wings’ built into the insoles. All three arches of the foot—the medial, lateral, and transverse—are supported, as opposed to just one. “The wings ‘flutter’ as you walk to provide a pumping action, which helps blood flow back to your heart from your feet,” commented Dr. Rose. “This provides comfort and decreases swelling in your feet. “

Most high heels detrimentally affect the feet due to their lack of support. If you would like more information, see one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists will assist you with all of your concerns.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet
High heels are popular shoes among women because they are associated with femininity.  Despite their appeal, they can cause many health problems if worn too frequently.
What parts 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.  Also, 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 have any questions, contact one of our offices in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Researchers in Denmark put together a study which suggested overweight children have a higher chance of injuring their foot, ankle, or leg during physical activity or play. The researchers involved in the project studied a total of 632 overweight children who attended physical education classes for an hour and a half each week for two and a half years.

The entire group of children experienced a total 673 lower-limb injuries during this time. The children who were heavier had an average of 5.3 injuries for every 1000 “athletic exposures,” while that rate was only 4.4 per 1000 for children at healthier weights. "In the bigger picture the need to get all kids more active, and particularly overweight children, is imperative," sports medicine researcher Malachy McHugh said.

As an epidemic, obesity negatively affects all life stages. Seek the help of to one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists can examine your child’s feet and provide the right care and treatment for them.

How Obesity Affects Your Feet

Extra weight can sneak up on anyone unprepared. It’s not until your feet begin to hurt at the end of the day when you realize they have been carrying your entire body weight. There are many side effects that occur in the feet as a result of having a few extra pounds.

  • Leaning forward (uneven posture)
  • Extra weight placed in the wrong parts of your feet
  • Development of Type-2 diabetes
  • Loss of sensation in the legs and feet
  • Small sores
  • Plantar Fasciitis

Treating your feet can be helped by paying special attention to your footwear and your own body. Investing in yourself can help to lead you on a better road to health as well as serve to relieve some of the issues related to your feet.

  • Invest in shoes that allow for good circulation and support
  • Losing weight can help prevent and treat diabetes in addition to other diseases
  • Activities such as yoga and water aerobics can help keep you active and mobile without placing stress on  your feet
  • Foot stretches can help alleviate some pain associated with foot conditions.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot ankle injuries.

Read more on Obesity and Feet

 Brandi Schlossberg is an advocate of the use of ankle and foot orthotics, or (AFOs), for treating podiatric conditions such as plantar fasciitis, as well as foot and ankle-based injuries. AFOS can treat plantar fasciitis by alleviating any pressure being placed on the heel and spread any shock absorbed by the foot. This will ease any pain and inflammation.  


Aside from plantar fasciitis, orthotics can also improve the biomechanics of your feet. Having good or improved biomechanics can prevent adverse foot and ankle conditions in the first place. However, as with any treatment, Schlossberg advises to consult with a physician first before investing in foot orthotics.

 

Foot orthotics serve a wide range of usefulness when it comes to foot and ankle conditions. If you are undergoing discomfort in your feet, see one of our three podiatrists at Family Foot Care of Southern Maryland. Our podiatrists can treat your foot and ankle needs.

 

What are Ankle Foot Orthotics?


Orthotics are physical aids used to support weak limbs or direct the proper function of limbs. Often they are used to support the ankle and foot. Such orthotics are known as AFOs. AFOs help strengthen the muscles or train them to function in the proper position. AFOs can also benefit muscles that need to be lengthened or loosened.

 

Why might you need orthotics?


Orthotics are often prescribed when someone is suffering from diseases that affect the musculature, like polio and multiple sclerosis. However, more common conditions like arthritis and stroke, or those that “toe in”, may also require orthotics.


Modern orthotics have improved dramatically from the metal braces of previous years. Many of today’s orthotics are made of lightweight plastics and other advanced materials to provide new levels of comfort and support. Often the orthosis is designed in a rigid L shape that is contoured to the calf and flesh colored.


For more information about Ankle Foot Orthotics, please follow the link below.

 

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices located in La Plata, Prince Frederick, Lexington Park, and Owing, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot ankle injuries.

 

Read more about Foot Ankle Orthotics