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Monday, 10 August 2020 00:00

A bunion, also known as hallux valgus, is a common deformity of the big toe. Bunions occur when the joint between the foot and toe is overextended, causing the big toe to bend towards the little toes. In severe cases, the big toe might even go over or under the second toe. This typically results in pain and inflammation, and can even cause arthritis to develop in the big toe. A bunion may sometimes require surgical correction. In cases where less invasive treatments have failed, surgery might be recommended to correct painful misalignment, to fix the deformity before it becomes worse, to reduce mobility restrictions, or to improve the cosmetic appearance of the foot. If you have a painful bunion, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist to explore treatment options.

If you are suffering from bunions, 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 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 due to 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 worsen existing bunions

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 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.

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Monday, 03 August 2020 00:00

Poor circulation in the feet is a common condition with potentially serious consequences. Symptoms of poor circulation can include tingling, numbness, pain, a pins and needles sensation, and muscle cramps in the feet and ankles. If you experience poor circulation in your feet, it is strongly suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist. A podiatrist can perform vascular testing to diagnose poor circulation. To manage your condition, the doctor may recommend lifestyle modifications, such as eating a balanced diet, doing light exercises, and quitting smoking. These changes can improve your circulation and reduce the risk of other cardiovascular complications, such as heart attack or stroke. The podiatrist may also prescribe medications or other treatments to increase blood flow to your legs and feet.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact one of our podiatrists of Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be 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. This can restrict 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, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those 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 maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

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.

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Monday, 27 July 2020 00:00

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.

 

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Monday, 20 July 2020 00:00

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
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