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January 2020

Monday, 27 January 2020 00:00

Podiatrists and Foot Surgery

A podiatrist is a doctor that specializes in treating foot conditions. The initials DPM will generally appear after their name, and are an abbreviation for Doctor of Podiatric Medicine. Foot ailments these physicians typically treat can include plantar fasciitis, bunions, and hammertoes. Mandatory schooling consists of four years of podiatry medical school, followed by three years of specialized training. Some doctors choose to perform surgery to remove tumors, bunions, and heel spurs. If you are interested in pursuing podiatry as a career choice, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can provide you with the information you need that may help you to make a decision.

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact Dr. Eric Simmons from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek the care of a podiatrist if they have suffered a foot injury or have common foot ailments such as heal spurs, bunions, arch problems, deformities, ingrown toenails, corns, foot and ankle problems, etc.

Podiatric Treatment

A podiatrist will treat the problematic areas of the feet, ankle or lower leg by prescribing the following:

  • Physical therapy
  • Drugs
  • Orthotic inserts or soles
  • Surgery on lower extremity fractures

A common podiatric procedure a podiatrist will use is a scanner or force plate which will allow the podiatrist to know the designs of orthotics. Patients are then told to follow a series of tasks to complete the treatment. The computer will scan the foot a see which areas show weight distribution and pressure points. The podiatrist will read the analysis and then determine which treatment plans are available.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What is a Podiatrist?
Monday, 20 January 2020 00:00

Signs You May Have Plantar Fasciitis

The plantar regions of the foot include the heel, the arch, and the midfoot. If you begin to notice pain in these regions of your foot, it’s possible you may have a condition that is known as plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis can develop for a number of different reasons. When the plantar fascia, the connective tissue from the heel to the ball of your foot, has too much stress put on it, it may become inflamed, overtightened, or torn. Common causes of over stressing the plantar fascia include obesity, arthritis, a sudden increase in physical activity, and wearing improper footwear. Pain will typically be felt in the plantar region when first getting out of bed in the morning, after sitting, standing, or walking for long periods of time, and when climbing stairs. To best diagnose if you in fact have plantar fasciitis, it is suggested you have an X-ray taken. For professional care and an advised treatment plan, we recommend you consult with a podiatrist as soon as you feel pain in your foot.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Eric Simmons  from InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor 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 our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis

Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Monday, 13 January 2020 00:00

Children and Walking Barefoot

When babies are born, their feet are generally soft and flexible. Research has shown the feet may become stronger when walking is done barefoot while indoors. This may help to strengthen the overall foot as the toes grasp the floor for balance. When the first pair of shoes are purchased, it is helpful that the shoes are made of lightweight and breathable materials. Additionally, there needs to be adequate room at the top of the shoes so the toes can move freely. This may help to prevent ingrown toenails from developing. Good foot hygiene begins with teaching your child how to properly wash and dry their feet, in addition to helping them to stretch their feet. If you would like more information about how to care for children’s feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact Dr. Eric Simmons of InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
Monday, 06 January 2020 00:00

Plasma and PRP Injections

The use of PRP injections, which is the abbreviation for platelet-rich plasma, is used to accelerate the healing process after specific types of surgery are performed. A small amount of the patient's own platelets are injected into the site, which can positively influence the healing. This is performed by separating the platelets that are found in the blood by using a centrifuge machine, and then injecting them into the site of the injury. Research has shown it has been effective in treating Achilles tendon injuries and plantar fasciitis. If you would like additional information about PRP injections, it is advised that you consult with a podiatrist who can help you to determine if this is the right treatment for you.

If you are suffering from a foot condition, contact Dr. Eric Simmons of InStride Foot & Ankle Center of Durham. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

What Is PRP?

Platelet Rich Plasma, or PRP, is blood taken from a patient and spun in a centrifuge, concentrating the amount of platelets. The plasma is then re-injected into the site of injury or damage, assisting the body in repairing damage to muscles, tendons, ligaments, and tissue. PRP helps the body speed up its healing process.

Uses of PRP

Injuries affecting the foot sometimes don’t heal properly because of poor blood circulation. The healing time slows down, and recovery time is affected by poor blood supply. PRP injections will speed up recovery and resolve this issue.

Treatment

PRP is the first regenerative treatment for damaged muscles, tendons, and ligaments. No surgery needed. It is only applied with an insertion of a needle.

Ultrasound – An ultrasound is needed for proper placement of the platelets.

Injection – When the first injection is received, the patient will return to the doctor in about 2 to 3 weeks and monitor the recovery process.

Recovery time – Some people respond to treatments differently. Therefore, depending on your condition, the doctor will make any remaining decisions on how many more injections are needed, or if any additional ones are even required.

Benefits

One may be able to avoid major surgery, and recovery time will be cut down. PRP injections also avoid creating scar tissue and damage to the area. Risks are also very low using PRP as a treatment. There is no risk of rejection, contracting a disease from using another person’s blood, or infection.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Durham, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about PRP Injections In Your Feet
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