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Tuesday, 28 June 2022 00:00

Are Plantar Warts Contagious?

The human papilloma virus (HPV) is responsible for the development of plantar warts. It is considered to be a contagious virus, and can be transmitted between people in public swimming areas and locker rooms. It is suggested to wear appropriate shoes while in these types of environments. Plantar warts are defined as small, hardened areas of skin that form on the bottom of the feet. They grow inward as a result of the constant pressure the foot endures from walking and standing. This type of wart can cause severe pain while walking, and it may be difficult to complete daily activities. These warts may have tiny black dots in the center, which are blood vessels. Research has shown that plantar warts are more common among children than adults as a result of the immunity that adults develop towards the virus over the years. If the wart is too bothersome to ignore, it is strongly suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can recommend correct treatment options for you.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM from Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Plantar Warts?

Intermetatarsal neuroma, or Morton’s neuroma, refers to a thickening of nerve tissue surrounding a nerve in the foot that is compressed or irritated. This compression can be the result of wearing high heels or other shoes that force the toes unnaturally into a narrow space. Morton’s neuroma typically occurs between the third and fourth toes. Engaging in certain athletic activities, like court sports or running, can also cause repetitive irritation to the nerves between the toes. Symptoms of Morton’s neuroma include pain, or the sensation of something being under the ball of the foot. There may be numbness, burning, or tingling, or it may feel like there is a bunched up sock or pebble in the front of the shoe. As the neuroma progresses over time, the pain may worsen and permanent nerve damage may occur. That is why it is very important to have your foot examined by a podiatrist if you believe you may have Morton’s neuroma. The earlier the diagnosis, the more likely it is that your podiatrist can treat the issue conservatively, rather than surgically.  

Morton’s neuroma is a very uncomfortable condition to live with. If you think you have Morton’s neuroma, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM of Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor will attend to all of your foot care needs and answer any of your related questions.  

Morton’s Neuroma

Morton's neuroma is a painful foot condition that commonly affects the areas between the second and third or third and fourth toe, although other areas of the foot are also susceptible. Morton’s neuroma is caused by an inflamed nerve in the foot that is being squeezed and aggravated by surrounding bones.

What Increases the Chances of Having Morton’s Neuroma?

  • Ill-fitting high heels or shoes that add pressure to the toe or foot
  • Jogging, running or any sport that involves constant impact to the foot
  • Flat feet, bunions, and any other foot deformities

Morton’s neuroma is a very treatable condition. Orthotics and shoe inserts can often be used to alleviate the pain on the forefront of the feet. In more severe cases, corticosteroids can also be prescribed. In order to figure out the best treatment for your neuroma, it’s recommended to seek the care of a podiatrist who can diagnose your condition and provide different treatment options.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What is Morton's Neuroma?
Tuesday, 14 June 2022 00:00

How Does Hammertoe Develop?

The noticeable symptom with a foot condition that is known as hammertoe affects the second toe. It is considered to be a deformity, and a muscle imbalance causing the toe to bend downward. Additionally, corns can form on top of the bone that is bent. This can be a result of the pressure that is endured as the top of the toes rub against shoes. Hammertoe can happen from genetic reasons, or possibly from wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Some patients have high arches, and this can contribute to developing hammertoe. If the condition is severe, surgery may be necessary in helping to permanently straighten the toes. It is considered to be an unsightly foot condition, and it may be difficult to walk. If you have a hammertoe, it is strongly advised that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM from Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Friday, 10 June 2022 00:00

Do Your Child's Feet Hurt?

Have your child's feet been examined lately? Healthy feet are happy feet. If your child is complaining of foot pain, it may be a sign of underlying problems.

Tuesday, 07 June 2022 00:00

Facts About Foot Drop

If you have trouble flexing or lifting your foot when you walk, you may have a condition known as foot drop. Symptoms include numbness, difficulty walking, or feet and toes that slap the ground when you walk. Foot drop is caused by a pinched nerve and may result from crossing your legs while sitting or wearing a tight bandage, brace, or cast. Foot drop can increase your risk of falling and may cause changes in your gait as well. You may start to march rather than walk as a way of lifting the toes that would otherwise drag behind. Foot drop can be permanent and calls for wearing an ankle brace to hold your foot in position. If you are experiencing symptoms of foot drop, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist who can perform specific tests to determine the severity and prescribe appropriate treatment regimens. 


 

If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM from Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Biomechanics in Podiatry

Podiatric biomechanics is a particular sector of specialty podiatry with licensed practitioners who are trained to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and lower leg. Biomechanics deals with the forces that act against the body, causing an interference with the biological structures. It focuses on the movement of the ankle, the foot and the forces that interact with them.

A History of Biomechanics

  • Biomechanics dates back to the BC era in Egypt where evidence of professional foot care has been recorded.
  • In 1974, biomechanics gained a higher profile from the studies of Merton Root, who claimed that by changing or controlling the forces between the ankle and the foot, corrections or conditions could be implemented to gain strength and coordination in the area.

Modern technological improvements are based on past theories and therapeutic processes that provide a better understanding of podiatric concepts for biomechanics. Computers can provide accurate information about the forces and patterns of the feet and lower legs.

Understanding biomechanics of the feet can help improve and eliminate pain, stopping further stress to the foot.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about The Importance of Biomechanics in Podiatry
Tuesday, 31 May 2022 00:00

The Most Common Basketball Injuries

Basketball players of all ages, genders, and levels of ability can suffer a variety of injuries. In fact, many basketball-related injuries occur every year—in both organized and unorganized team sports. The most common sites of basketball-related injuries are the ankles and feet. The good news is that most basketball-related injuries are sprains and strains, which can be effectively treated and healed with proper care. A sprain occurs when ligament(s) surrounding a joint (like the ankle) become stretched beyond their limits, or even torn. A strain is a tear in a muscle or tendon which is either partial or complete. It is important to see a podiatrist when you have injured your foot or ankle playing basketball to receive proper treatment and avoid future problems. An improperly healed ankle sprain, for instance, can lead to chronic ankle instability and future ankle sprains.


 

Ankle and foot injuries are common among athletes and in many sports. They can be caused by several problems and may be potentially serious. If you are feeling pain or think you were injured in a sporting event or when exercising, consult with Michael F. Esber, DPM from Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Common Injuries

The most common injuries that occur in sporting activities include:

  • Achilles Tendonitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains
  • Broken Foot
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Stress Fractures
  • Turf Toe

Symptoms

Symptoms vary depending upon the injury and in some cases, there may be no symptoms at all. However, in most cases, some form of symptom is experienced. Pain, aching, burning, bruising, tenderness, tightness or stiffness, sensation loss, difficulty moving, and swelling are the most common symptoms.

Treatment

Just as symptoms vary depending upon the injury, so do treatment options. A common treatment method is known as the RICE method. This method involves rest, applying ice, compression and elevating the afflicted foot or ankle. If the injury appears to be more serious, surgery might be required, such as arthroscopic or reconstructive surgery. Lastly, rehabilitation or therapy might be needed to gain full functionality in the afflicted area. Any discomfort experienced by an athlete must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Sports Related Foot and Ankle Injuries
Tuesday, 24 May 2022 00:00

Pointing and Flexing the Feet

There are specific foot stretches which may help to loosen tight calf muscles, relieve arch cramps, and lessen heel pain. Little or no stretching may result in restricted mobility, and the risk of ripping, tearing, or straining a muscle may increase. Pointing and flexing the feet will successfully stretch the soles of the feet and strengthen the calves. It is important to note that while flexing the foot, it is beneficial to lead with the heel which can help to stretch the calf muscles. Additionally, while pointing the feet, it is more effective when the top of the arch is lengthened and pulled away from the body. When the feet are frequently stretched, chronic foot pain problems may be diminished, and the risk of getting foot and ankle injuries may be reduced. If you would like to know more about how to correctly stretch the feet, please speak with a podiatrist. 

Why Stretching Is Important for Your Feet

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Michael F. Esber, DPM from Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first to determine if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous exercise, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Stretch Your Feet
Tuesday, 17 May 2022 00:00

How Did I Get an Ingrown Toenail?

The medical term for an ingrown toenail is onychocryptosis. It is a painful foot condition that occurs when the toenail grows into the skin on the side of the nail. It can happen as a result of wearing shoes that do not fit properly. Additionally, it may happen from cutting the toenails incorrectly. The proper way to trim toenails is to cut them straight across, and not rounded. Ingrown toenails typically affect the big toe, and research has shown it is a more common condition among men rather than women. Incurring a foot injury may lead to developing an ingrown toenail. This can happen if the foot is jammed against a piece of furniture, or has become damaged from a heavy object dropping on it. Common symptoms of an ingrown toenail include redness, tenderness, and pain. It may feel better when the affected toe is soaked in warm water, which can make it easier to gently pull the skin away from the nail. It is suggested that if you have an ingrown toenail you are under the care of a podiatrist who can offer you proper treatment methods.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM of Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Ingrown Toenails
Wednesday, 11 May 2022 00:00

Wounds That Don't Heal Need to Be Checked

Your feet are covered most of the day. If you're diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often a sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

Tuesday, 10 May 2022 00:00

Hiking and Blisters

Most people who enjoy hiking are familiar with blisters. They are considered to be a common injury and typically develop on the feet as a result of excess friction. Friction is often caused from wearing socks or shoes that do not fit correctly. At first, the skin will become red and irritated and then a small bubble that is filled with liquid will form. This is actually the body’s natural method for protecting raw skin. The blister will gradually drain when new skin will form underneath it. Many people find blisters to be painful, and may find mild relief when it is covered with a protective pad. Effective prevention methods can include wearing shoes and socks that fit properly, and many hikers wear a liner sock under their regular socks. It is important that the blister does not drain before it is time as this may help to prevent a painful infection. As tempting as it may be to some, do not pop it. If you have developed a blister and it has become infected, or more knowledge is needed for proper healing, please consult a podiatrist.

Blisters may appear as a single bubble or in a cluster. They can cause a lot of pain and may be filled with pus, blood, or watery serum. If your feet are hurting, contact Michael F. Esber, DPM of Arizona Foot Health Center. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Foot Blisters

Foot blisters are often the result of friction. This happens due to the constant rubbing from shoes, which can lead to pain.

What Are Foot Blisters?

A foot blister is a small fluid-filled pocket that forms on the upper-most layer of the skin. Blisters are filled with clear fluid and can lead to blood drainage or pus if the area becomes infected.

Symptoms

(Blister symptoms may vary depending on what is causing them)

  • Bubble of skin filled with fluid
  • Redness
  • Moderate to severe pain
  • Itching

Prevention & Treatment

In order to prevent blisters, you should be sure to wear comfortable shoes with socks that cushion your feet and absorb sweat. Breaking a blister open may increase your chances of developing an infection. However, if your blister breaks, you should wash the area with soap and water immediately and then apply a bandage to the affected area. If your blisters cause severe pain it is important that you call your podiatrist right away.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Sun City West, AZ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Blisters
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