What About Gout?

Also known as podagra when it affects the big toe, gout is often a recurring condition that causes joints to become red, swollen and extremely tender to the touch. Historically it has been known as the “disease of kings” due to it’s connection to a diet consisting of large amounts of meat, alcohol, and seafood.

Gout frequently affects the base joint of the big toe, but may also occur in the ankles, knees, hands and wrists. High uric acid levels in the blood are frequently the precursor to a gout attack since the uric acid can crystallize and form needle-like deposits in joints, around tendons and other tissues, causing extreme pain.

Diagnosis:

  • Visual inspection—The telltale signs of podagra are generally a straightforward diagnosis.
  • Synovial fluid test—Your doctor will use a needle to take a sample of fluid from the joint and inspect it under a microscope to confirm the presence of the urate crystals.
  • Blood test—Blood will be drawn and tested to determine the level of uric acid.

Treatment:

  • Ibuprofen to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Application of ice several times a day for 15 minutes each time
  • Colchicine may be used as an alternative to ibuprofen
  • Steroids may be injected into the joint to provide immediate relief
  • Allopurinol may be prescribed after the attack to prevent future bouts
  • Changing your diet to eliminate foods and beverages that are high in purines

Some of the foods that have been proven to help lower the risk of a gout attack include: cherries, blueberries, strawberries, bananas, tomatoes and green leafy vegetables. Drinking organic apple cider vinegar, fruit juices and pure water are also a good idea.

If you or a loved one is experiencing the debilitating pain of a gout attack, it is important to consult with your doctor for proper evaluation and treatment. The foot specialists at Havertown Podiatry, in Havertown, PA are experts in all aspects of foot and ankle care. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you with all of the latest equipment and techniques. Please contact our office with any questions you may have or to make an appointment by calling 610-449-3344.

Flat Feet Can Cause All Sorts of Other Problems

If the bottom of your foot touches, or nearly touches the floor when you are standing, you have flat feet. It is such a common condition that is estimated as many as 60 million Americans have the disorder. Chronic flat feet can cause lower back pain, knee joint problems, shin splints and a host of other issues. Flat feet can either be congenital (you were born with them) or acquired in some other manner.

Congenital Flat Feet

While there are several types of flat feet in the congenital category, the most common of these is referred to as “flexible flat feet”, which means you have an arch, but as soon as you put weight on it, the arch flattens. A less common condition in the congenital category is characterized by having no arch at all, with or without weight bearing.

Acquired Flat Feet

As we get older the main tendon on the arch of the foot undergoes continuous pressure, and eventually it just can’t stay up anymore and ultimately fails. As it lowers, considerable pain is caused through the whole foot and ankle. Acquired flat feet may also be a result of tendon and ligament issues.

Treatment for Flat Feet

There are a variety of treatment options available for flat feet, including rest and ice, stretching exercises, physical therapy and ibuprofen for pain. If your flat feet aren’t causing you any pain or other problems, then you may not require any treatment. You can try over the counter shoe inserts, but keep in mind that it is very important to see a doctor to find out exactly what type of flat feet you have, since without the correct diagnosis and treatment, the problem will continue to worsen.

The foot specialists at Havertown Podiatry, in Havertown, PA are experts in all aspects of foot and ankle care. Our team of doctors is dedicated to serving you and making sure all your questions are answered. Please contact our office to make an appointment by calling 610-449-3344.

Understanding Bunions

bunions10Up to 60 percent of older adults are affected by a foot disorder, including bunions. Known as one of the more common foot disorders, bunions form as a bony bump on the side of your foot, near the base of the big toe. Bunions can be caused by genes or by wearing ill-fitting tight shoes for long periods of time. Preventing the progression of your bunions involves wearing properly-fitting shoes that accommodate your toes, are not too high in heels, and have good arch support.

Bunions can be very troublesome if they are not treated correctly. If you are having problems with your bunions contact Dr. Bruce G. Greenfield, DPM of Havertown Podiatry. Dr. Greenfield will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs by the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why do Bunions Form?

  • Genetics – susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary
  • Stress on the feet – poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can cause bunions to form

How are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

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

Read more about Bunions

Foot and Knee Injuries Affect Overall Health

foot pain4Understanding your body is crucial toward treatment and prevention of knee and foot injuries. Knee and foot injuries can occur as a result of any physical activity, such as running or even just walking. The knee joint in particular is a complex joint, surrounded by ligaments, allowing us to walk and run. Knee injuries can become especially severe if left untreated, potentially leading to a loss of muscle strength and mobility over time. It’s recommended to seek the advice of your podiatrist and possibly follow up with physical therapy treatment. Surgery is also a potential treatment option, depending on the severity of the injury.

Regardless of season or weather, everyday foot care should be practiced year round. For more information about everyday foot care, contact Dr. Bruce G. Greenfield, DPM of Havertown Podiatry. Dr. Greenfield will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Everyday Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. After all, without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks. It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before, for example.

For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops.

Also, wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

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

Read more about Everyday Foot Care

Ingrown Toenails: Causes and Preventions

ingrown toenailIngrown toenails can occur when too much pressure is exerted on the toenails, typically on the big toenail. Ingrown toenails, if left untreated, are painful and can potentially lead to infection. Understanding your daily routine is vital to prevention. If you exercise often or wear high heels, take heed of your shoes. Improperly-fitting shoes and socks can contribute to the development of ingrown toenails. Make sure to take proper care of your toenails, keep your cuticles intact and cut your toenails straight across.

Ingrown toenails can be an easy fix if treated properly. If you are suffering from an ingrown toenail, contact Dr. Bruce G. Greenfield, D.P.M., P.C., of Havertown Podiatry. Dr. Greenfield will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions, please contact our office located in Havertown, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read More about Ingrown Toenails

© 2013 Bruce G. Greenfield, D.P.M., P.C. | ® All Rights Reserved | Site map