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July 2020

Monday, 27 July 2020 00:00

The Ankle-Brachial Index

The ankle-brachial index (ABI) is a quick and non-invasive form of vascular testing that your podiatrist may perform during a routine visit. It is frequently used to assess the presence or severity of peripheral artery disease, a potentially dangerous condition that results in poor circulation to the lower limbs. The ankle-brachial index test is performed in several steps. Similarly to typical checkups at your physician’s office, first, the doctor will measure your blood pressure around your upper arm. Then, the doctor will measure your blood pressure around your ankle. The two numbers are compared to find the ankle-brachial index value, a number that is used to determine the presence or severity of peripheral artery disease. The lower the ABI value is, the greater the chance that you have arterial disease. If you suspect you have poor circulation to your lower limbs, it is recommended that you visit a podiatrist, who can perform an ankle-brachial index test, as well as other vascular tests to assess blood flow to your feet and ankles. 

 

Vascular testing plays an important part in diagnosing disease like peripheral artery disease. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, or diabetes, consult with one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Vascular Testing?

Vascular testing checks for how well blood circulation is in the veins and arteries. This is most often done to determine and treat a patient for peripheral artery disease (PAD), stroke, and aneurysms. Podiatrists utilize vascular testing when a patient has symptoms of PAD or if they believe they might. If a patient has diabetes, a podiatrist may determine a vascular test to be prudent to check for poor blood circulation.

How Is it Conducted?

Most forms of vascular testing are non-invasive. Podiatrists will first conduct a visual inspection for any wounds, discoloration, and any abnormal signs prior to a vascular test.

 The most common tests include:

  • Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) examination
  • Doppler examination
  • Pedal pulses

These tests are safe, painless, and easy to do. Once finished, the podiatrist can then provide a diagnosis and the best course for treatment.

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

 

Read more about Vascular Testing in Podiatry

The Achilles tendon, located just above the heel, is a band of tissue that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. The Achilles tendon is particularly prone to injury from overuse. Common causes of Achilles tendon issues include over-training, excessively increasing the intensity or distance that you run or jog, lack of training variation, running on hills, and wearing shoes that do not sufficiently support your feet. You may also be at greater risk of injuring your Achilles tendons if you are male, 30 years of age or older, and have a higher body weight or diabetes. Weakness, poor endurance, or tightness in the calf muscles, poor muscular control of your lower limbs, and stiff ankle and foot joints can increase your risk as well. Consult with a podiatrist to discuss how you can continue to stay active while reducing your risk of Achilles tendon injuries. 

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

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 create immense 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 injuries 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, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Achilles Tendon Injuries
Friday, 17 July 2020 00:00

Gout Pain Can Be Managed

Gout is a painful, inflammatory form of arthritis. Those affected will typically feel an intense stiffness in the joints of their feet, particularly in the big toe. Schedule a visit to learn about how gout can be managed and treated.

Monday, 13 July 2020 00:00

What Can Cause a Stress Fracture?

A stress fracture is a common sports injury, often brought upon by overuse and repetitive activities. Stress fractures can occur when small cracks form in the bone. Quite often athletes may develop a stress fracture due to errors in their training technique. For example, it can be very damaging to suddenly increase the intensity of a work-out regime or to increase the amount of walking one does. Increasing the difficulty of training over the course of a few months can be much safer as opposed to a few weeks. Other factors such as improper equipment can also lead to the development of a stress fracture. Worn-out footwear, or shoes that are too stiff can also be damaging to how one performs their training. For further information on how to prevent getting a stress fracture, please consult with a podiatrist.

Activities where too much pressure is put on the feet can cause stress fractures. To learn more, contact one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep your pain free and on your feet.

Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

Stress fractures occur in the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken from too much or too little use.  The feet and ankles then lose support when walking or running from the impact of the ground. Since there is no protection, the bones receive the full impact of each step. Stress on the feet can cause cracks to form in the bones, thus creating stress fractures.

What Are Stress Fractures?

Stress fractures occur frequently in individuals whose daily activities cause great impact on the feet and ankles. Stress factors are most common among:

  • Runners                                  
  • People affected with Osteoporosis
  • Tennis or basketball players
  • Gymnasts
  • High impact workouts

Symptoms

Pain from the fractures occur in the area of the fractures and can be constant or intermittent. It will often cause sharp or dull pain with swelling and tenderness. Engaging in any kind of activity which involves high impact will aggravate pain.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Dealing with Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle

Flat feet is a condition known for causing fallen arches, meaning the feet lay completely flat on the floor. There are two different kinds of flat feet one may experience, rigid and flexible. A flexible flat foot has an arch when resting, however, when standing or walking, the arch then disappears. This type of flat foot is often common among pediatric aged patients. A rigid flat foot develops during adulthood due to the weakening of the tibialis posterior muscle tendon. This type of flat foot may worsen over time and can cause pain and swelling in the feet, particularly the inside arch of the foot and ankle. Rigid flat foot may eventually lead to arthritis as well. For a proper diagnosis and recommended treatment plan, it’s suggested that you consult with a podiatrist.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – If you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms

  • Pain around the heel or arch area
  • Trouble standing on the tip toe
  • Swelling around the inside of the ankle
  • Flat look to one or both feet
  • Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flat Feet
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