Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Feeling the Pinch this Autumn? Bunions May Be to Blame


With the curtain closed on summer and sandal season, fall is the season during which Community Foot Specialists sees an upswing in patients whose feet are feeling the pinch in their closed-toe footwear. This seasonal phenomenon seems to focus on women, although there are men who have this issue. The common culprit? Painful bunions that were given room to breathe during sandal season, but now face close quarters of a fall boot or shoe.

Bunions are abnormalities that form on the joint at the base of the big toe in the form of a bony bump. They occur when the big toe pushes against the other toes, which force the big toe joint in the opposite direction. As time passes, the abnormal positioning of the toe enlarges the joint. This further crowds the toes of the foot and causes pain and discomfort.

Bunions can occur for a variety of reasons. One of the most common causes is tight shoes, although they can also come about as a result of an inherited structural or mechanical defect, a stress to the foot, or a medical condition.

To help avoid bunions, don’t wear pointed shoes. Choose footwear with a wide foot box to give all of your toes plenty of room. If bunions become so painful that they impede daily activities, the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons recommends discussing surgical options with your podiatrist. However, please note that Community Foot Specialists firmly believes in exhausting the most conservative foot care treatment options first before considering surgery.

Community Foot Specialists can be reached at 937-426-9500. Or you may visit our website to request an appointment, view common conditions we treat, or get any other info you might need.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Toenail Fungus in Dayton/Springfield, Ohio

Thick, discolored toenails are a common complaint amongst our Dayton/Springfield, Ohio patients. Many of our patients avoid wearing sandals or swimming because they are embarrassed by their unsightly toenails. This is a problem Community Foot Specialists is happy to help you fix!

A fungal toenail (or onychomycosis) is one of the most common conditions our Dayton/Springfield podiatrist sees. People who have weak immune systems (often times diabetics, HIV patients, etc.) are more at risk for a fungal infection of the toenail.

What does an infected toenail look like? A toenail infected with fungus appears to be thickened and a yellowish color. The toenail often times will appear to crumble or become flaky.

What happens if left untreated? If you do not treat your fungal toenail, your entire toenail may become discolored and eventually begin to lift from the nail bed, often times causing your toenail to come completely off.

There are medications available that provide a complete cure, however, the process can be a little slow depending on how infected your toenail is. The more you put it off, the worse it may get so instead of worrying; call your local podiatrist at (937) 426-9500 so we assist you!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Question of the Month: I'm a diabetic, do I need diabetic shoes?


Question of the Month!
By: Dr. Thomas

Q: "I'm a diabetic, do I need diabetic shoes?"

A: That depends. Diabetics who are well controlled with their blood sugar, do not have toe deformities such as bunions or hammertoes, intact circulation to their feet as well as intact sensation or feeling in their feet, are at low risk and do not need diabetic shoes. Diabetic shoes are considered to be a necessity for those diabetics who have an at risk foot or a foot that could be in danger of developing a wound in an otherwise normal everyday shoe. These shoes are designed with extra depth to accommodate the foam inserts which are used to reduce chances of a foot ulcer on the bottom of the foot. Some patients may be interested in these shoes for the simple fact they believe they can get free shoes and the insurance will sometimes "pay for them". This is not the purpose of diabetic shoes. To determine if the diabetic patient is eligible for shoes, the podiatric doctor will perform a comprehensive diabetic foot exam first to check to see if the feet are at high risk for developing problems such as ulcerations. If the need is determined, then your doctor will do all steps necessary to see that the patient gets those shoes and that they are fit correctly.