Category Archives for Common Conditions

Warts (Verrucae)

BECAUSE YOUR FEET

Deserve

the very best of care

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Warts (Verrucae)

Warts (Verrucae) are usually contracted at wet places where you walk barefoot, so are common with people who use showers at a gym or swimming pools.

They are often confused with Corns and Callus – another type of painful hard skin lesion. Your podiatrist will be able to differentiate these.

Verrucae tend to be harder to treat if they are left for a long time so if you’ve noticed a new area of hard or thickened skin on the sole of your feet it might be one and you should visit your podiatrist for an expert opinion.

Warts are due to the Human Papillomavirus and develop on the foot in a cauliflower appearance, with the skin’s striations running around the wart itself.

Advance Foot Clinic’s treatment follows a régime that is relatively painless and requires no surgery. This allows the podiatrists to treat multiple warts simultaneously for a quicker treatment outcome.

Tibialis Posterior Dysfunction

BECAUSE YOUR FEET

Deserve

the very best of care

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Tibialis Posterior Dysfunction

Tibialis Posterior dysfunction is associated with the loss of function of the Tibialis Posterior muscle resulting from a repetitive strain or overuse of this muscle. The Tibialis Posterior muscle is one of the primary muscle that support the arch of the foot and plays a vital role in walking.

Main contributing factors

  • Repetitive activity or motion that causes strain on the muscle and tendon
  • Direct Trauma
  • Poor foot structure causing excessive midfoot collapse
  • Tight calf muscles
  • Inflammatory processes such as Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • More prevalent in Females over the age of 40 years
  • Sudden increase in activity level
  • Increased BMI

Symptoms

  • Diffuse swelling on the arch of the foot
  • Tenderness and warmth on the medial side of the ankle along the course of the tendon
  • A gradual loss of the arch of the foot
  • Excessive heel wear on the medial side of the shoes
  • gait can become unsteady
  • Difficulty rising onto the toes

Treatment

Podiatric treatment of tibialis posterior dysfunction can help to reduce both the duration and severity of symptoms. Your podiatrist will be able to recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Common modalities used include Changes in footwear, padding, strapping, physical therapies and orthotics.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis (fass-e-i-tus) is probably the most frequent cause of heel pain in adults. It usually develops gradually but can appear suddenly, usually as a result of some form of trauma such as stepping awkwardly or on a sharp object. It is usually worse first thing in the morning or after cooling down after physical activity.

The Plantar Fascia is a fibrous band that runs from your heel bone (cal-cane-e-us) to the webbing at your toes. It acts as an elastic band to support the arch of the foot and help facilitate proper foot motion.  Inflammation of the fascia or its attachments can occur if the fascia has been placed under significant stress from one or more of the following reasons;

  • increased weight
  • repetitive stress/strain
  • excessive pronation (feet that roll in too much)
  • incorrect/ unsupportive footwear

Main contributing factors

  • Female more than male
  • High impact activities or increased activity levels
  • Overweight
  • Over 40 years

Treatment options

Podiatric treatment of plantar faciitis can help to reduce both the duration and severity of symptoms. Your podiatrist will be able to recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Common modalities used include Changes in footwear, padding, strapping, physical therapies and orthotics.

Morton’s Neuroma

Morton’s Neuroma

A neuroma is a thickening of the nerve tissue caused by compression and irritation of the nerve.  This compression creates swelling of the nerve which eventually leads to permanent nerve damage.   The most common neuroma is in the foot and is called a Morton’s Neuroma.

Morton’s Neuroma Symptoms

  • Pain on weight bearing, often relieved by removing shoes
  • Burning, numbness and paresthesia

Contributing factors

  • Pointed-toe footwear, high heels, and footwear with a narrow toe box
  • Over pronating while walking
  • Having flat feet
  • Tight Achilles tendon
  • Obesity
  • Loss of fat pad under foot

Treatment

Podiatric treatment of neuromas can help to reduce both the duration and severity of symptoms. Your podiatrist will be able to recomend an appropriate treatment plan. Common modalities used include changes in footwear, padding, strapping, physical therapies and orthotics.

Kids Feet

Kids Feet

Kids feet (especially below 4) are soft and pliable.

Your Children should visit Advance Foot Clinic if any of the following is evident:

  • pain in the feet or legs
  • shoe wear is uneven
  • the feet are abnormally shaped
  • tripping and falling occurs
  • toenail pain
  • skin lesions (such as tinea pedis)

Pressures that come from poor footwear or abnormal foot alignment can easily cause a child’s foot to deform. A child’s foot grows rapidly within the first year, generally reaching about half their adult foot size. Early intervention can achieve correction and maximize the kids feet health.

In older children and adolescents, growing pains in the leg and foot are a common complaint, often causing a deep ache during physical activities and at night. There are some specific causes of growing pains, especially in the heel, called Sever´s disease or calcaneal apophysitis and at the knee, where its called Osgood-schlatters disease. These diseases are directly correlated with growth spurts and are able to be remedied with podiatric care. Feet that sweat profusely or have a smelly odor can also be a problem in the older child.

Ingrown Toe Nails

Ingrown Toe Nails

Ingrown toenails occur when part of the nail penetrates the skin, which can often result in an infection. The ingrown nail can also apply pressure in the nail sulci (where your toenail meets the skin) without penetrating the skin and while this isn’t an ingrown nail as such, it can be painful and often results in the formation of a corn or callous in the nail sulci.

Main contributing factors

  • The shape of the nail – nails which are curved into a U shape (rather than flat)
  • Poor cutting- cutting too far down the sides or leaving the nail too short
  • Poor fitted footwear- incorrect or tight footwear will increase pressure on the skin adjoining the nails.
  • Previous or current trauma- injury to a toenail may cause it to deform in the shape and thickness it grows in.
  • Feet that swell or are “fleshy” or “chubby” increase the chances of an ingrown nail.
  • feet that pronate may compensate by rolling off the inside of the big toe – this can push the skin onto the nail.

Treatment Options

Antibiotics are commonly prescribed for treatment of the infected ingrown toenail, however while the nail edge remains the symptoms will reoccur. Advance Foot Clinic Podiatrists can easily remove the corner or spike that has penetrated the skin, a procedure that generally causes little discomfort. If the ingrown nail is too painful or is too deep, a local anesthetic will be used in conjunction with a minor surgical procedure which is performed at our offices. Until the problematic wedge of nail that is causing the ingrown toe nail is removed, infection will reoccur. Reoccurring ingrown nails may need to have the edge permanently removed with a minor surgical procedure. Advance Foot Clinic uses a phenol based chemical during surgery which sterilizes the nail bed to minimize the likelihood of a reoccurrence.

Fungal Nail Infections

Fungal Nail Infections

Fungal nail infections and fungal infections in the foot can occur in both the nail and the skin. An infection of the skin is known as Tinea Pedis or Athletes Foot. Infections of the nail are called Onychomycosis. These represent some of the most common skin infections.

As we age the body’s natural infection fighting capabilities greatly diminish.  Fungal infections in their own right pose little consequence to the body, apart from aesthetically. It is the secondary complications that concern podiatrists.  Chronic fungal infections predispose the client to more serious bacterial infections most commonly with Diabetics.

Main contributing factors

The most common means by which people contract a fungal infection is via:

  • Other humans
  • Animals i.e. Puppies and Kittens
  • Gardens

A few factors can predispose a person to contracting a fungal infection

  • Walking barefoot around the home.
  • Hot, humid, dark environments i.e., closed in shoe wear.
  • Excessive foot perspiration.

Treatment

Treatment for fungal infections will depend on the severity of the infection. Often fungal infections will require treatment over a period of weeks or months depending on the location, severity and type of fungus. Incomplete treatment can often result in recurrent infections – the podiatrist will be able to assist with formulating a comprehensive treatment plan.

 

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetic foot care is a crucial element of looking after a diabetic patient. Advance Foot Clinic plays a major role within a health care team approach in prevention and management of complications in diabetics’ feet. We advise that patients with diabetes should be assessed at least annually (more if the risk is greater ie your diabetes is not well controlled or you have suffered from diabetes for a long period of time).

Regular foot care from a Podiatrist is vital in preventing symptoms from developing. As well as nail care, callous and corn management, Advance Foot Clinic also performs neurological and vascular screening to monitor patient’s conditions. The use of dopplers (ultrasonic blood flow detection devices) at our surgeries have greatly improved the detail in which your vascular system is monitored ensuring diabetic foot care is regularly monitored.

Diabetes (mellitus) is a chronic disease that can affect people of any age. There are predisposing factors for the onset of diabetes such as genetic predisposition, weight, amount of regular exercise, diet  and age.

Diabetes affects the feet in the following ways;

  • Nerve Damage, which is not always noticeable, often we relate to the altered sensation in your feet such as “burning” or numb feet.
  • Vascular (or blood) circulation. Poor circulation can affect the ability of the body to heal when damage occurs.
  •  Higher susceptibility to infection  as the bodies immune system is compromised and circulation is not as effective
  • Ulceration of the feet and ankles due to the compromised blood flow, feeling and immune system.
  • Joint stiffness

Advance Foot clinic offers a range of proactive and reactive treatments to best ensure foot health of the diabetic patient is optimized.

Custom Foot Orthoses (Orthotics)

Custom Foot Orthoses (Orthotics)

Advance Foot Clinic podiatrists are able to prescribe custom foot orthoses (orthotics) to assist in the rehabilitative process of many conditions. 

Advance Foot Clinic offer you the latest premium made, custom computerised, medically graded EVA orthotic devices available .   We use software that allows us to produce a 3D scan of your feet. This scan is then used as a reference point throughout the entire manufacturing process, to ensure that we’re meeting your every need. 

When prescribing Custom Foot Orthoses the requirements of your condition, your activities and your footwear will be taken into consideration.

Custom Foot Orthoses have been successfully used many times to relieve pain and treat conditions including common causes of foot, heel, leg and knee pain.

Corns & Callouses

Corns – Callouses

Corns-Callouses are both referring to thickening of the skin on the foot. Callous’s are thickened, hard skin that occurs on the foot in areas that receive increased friction or pressure. Corns appear as a horny thickening of the skin on the toes or beneath the foot. This thickening appears as a cone shaped mass pointing down into the skin and is often surrounded by callous. They are actually a normal and natural way for the body to protect itself (the soft tissues beneath the skin), similar to your hands. If the pressure continues the skin gets thicker and usually becomes painful. This often feels like there is a stone bruise or you will feel as if you are “walking on pebbles”

There are three main types of corns or callous which occur on our feet;

  • Callous can occur anywhere on the foot that is susceptible to increased pressure. It appears in a diffuse area of hard skin which is yellowish in colour and can often have cracks (or fissures) within them.
  • Hard corns are usually located on the outer surface of the little toe or on the upper surface of the other toes, but can occur between the toes as well as the bottom of the foot over a prominent bone or an area of high pressure
  • A soft corn occurs between the toes and often appears white and macerated (or soggy). These can be further implicated by a tinea pedis (fungal) infection due to the moist nature of the soft corn.

Main contributing factors

  • Deformities of the toes such as hammer toes, claw toes, bunions- all predispose the foot to areas of increased pressure
  • Tight or incorrectly fitted footwear
  • gait abnormalities which cause the foot to be overloaded in particular areas
  • bony prominences

Treatment Options

  • Your Advance foot clinic podiatrist will relatively painlessly remove the build up of skin. This should give you immediate relief.
  • Shoe padding to prevent rapid reappearance.
  • Footwear advice or modification.
  • If biomechanics is a contributory cause – orthotics may be considered

Bunions

Bunions

Bunions is a term used to describe a “bump” on the side of the big toe. But this bump is actually the result of a change in the alignment of the big toe joint. Instead of pointing straight ahead the big toe leans towards your second toe, causing the bump. Its correct medical term is hallux valgus. Bunions are a progressive disorder, gradually changing the angle of the bones. Usually the symptoms appear at later stages, although some people never have symptoms.

Contributing factors

  • Inherited faulty mechanical structure of the foot – they often run in the family.
  • Poor choice of footwear. Wearing very pointed and shallow shoes around at toe box shoes through time can potentially exacerbate bunions.

Symptoms

  • Pain or soreness
  • Inflammation and redness
  • A burning sensation
  • Perhaps some numbness

Other conditions which may appear with bunions include calluses on the big toe, sores or corns between the toes, ingrown toenails, and restricted motion of the toe.

Treatment options

Generally treatments are aimed at easing the pain of bunions, but they won’t reverse the deformity itself. Your podiatrist will be able to recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Common modalities used include Changes in footwear, padding, strapping, debridement of panful callosities, physical therapies and orthotics.

Arthritis – Legs and Feet

Arthritis – Legs and Feet

Arthritis – Legs and Feet and Arthritic disorders are characterised by inflammation of a joint, marked by pain, heat, redness, and swelling.  Arthritic disorders are among the most common chronic (or long term) conditions that is painful and disabling.  There are many different types of arthritic disorders but most commonly they occur as Rheumatoid arthritis or Osteoarthritis.

Advance Foot clinic podiatrists take an important role in the treatment of such disorders working in conjunction with other health professionals.

Treatments for Arthritis Legs-Feet are;

  • removal and treatment of skin lesions (such as corns and callous)
  • accommodation and relief from painful joints affected by the arthritis (this may include padding or the use of insoles or orthotics
  • footwear advice
  • conservative treatments to reduce painful symptoms due to joint pain

Achilles Tendinopathy

Achilles Tendinopathy

Achilles Tendinopathy is characterized by pain and swelling behind the ankle and lower leg caused by inflammation of the tendon itself. It occurs most frequently after a sudden increase in your level of activity without adequate training or conditioning. Changing footwear, occupation, work or playing surfaces can also lead to inflammation and pain through the Achilles area.

Main contributing factors of achilles tendinopathy:

  • Recent changes to; activity, footwear, training duration or occupation
  • Tight gastrocnemius and/or soleus muscles (calves)
  • Overuse of the calf muscles

Treatment Options

Podiatric treatment of achilles tendinopathy can help to reduce both the duration and severity of symptoms. Your podiatrist will be able to recommend an appropriate treatment plan. Common modalities used include exercises, changes in footwear, padding, strapping and physical therapies. If your lower limb biomechanics are thought to be contributory your podiatrist may recommend orthotics.