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Monday, 19 November 2018 00:00

Different Types of Foot Surgery

There are several painful and uncomfortable foot conditions that may improve if foot surgery can be performed. If a severe fracture in the foot is experienced and the bone protrudes from the skin, surgery can be an effective way to position the bone back into its correct position. A surgical procedure referred to as joint fusion may be performed to correct bunions or damage that has occurred, which may be a result of arthritis. Additionally, arthroscopic surgery may be useful in removing tissues that have become inflamed in the early stages of arthritis. If you are afflicted with the condition that is known as hammertoe, surgery may be a necessary step in straightening the toes that are bent. If you have uncomfortable heel pain and other treatment methods have been exhausted, surgery may be successful in eliminating or reducing this type of pain. It is advised to consult with a podiatrist if you have foot conditions and may be considering surgery for relief.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary to treat a foot ailment. To learn more, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

When Is Surgery Necessary?

Foot and ankle surgery is generally reserved for cases in which less invasive, conservative procedures have failed to alleviate the problem. Some of the cases in which surgery may be necessary include:

  • Removing foot deformities like bunions and bone spurs
  • Severe arthritis that has caused bone issues
  • Cosmetic reconstruction

What Types of Surgery Are There?

The type of surgery you receive will depend on the nature of the problem you have. Some of the possible surgeries include:

  • Bunionectomy for painful bunions
  • Surgical fusion for realignment of bones
  • Neuropathy decompression surgery to treat nerve damage

Benefits of Surgery

Although surgery is usually a last resort, it can provide more complete pain relief compared to non-surgical methods and may allow you to finally resume full activity.

Surgical techniques have also become increasingly sophisticated. Techniques like endoscopic surgery allow for smaller incisions and faster recovery times.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Foot Surgery
Monday, 12 November 2018 00:00

What Causes Poor Circulation?

The medical condition referred to as poor circulation is a result of restricted blood movement through the vessels. This generally occurs when the arteries are blocked, and the blood has difficulty flowing through the body. General causes for this condition to develop may include indulging in unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking, lack of exercise, or being overweight. Research has shown that medical conditions may play a significant role in developing poor circulation, including high blood pressure, having diabetes, or Raynaud’s syndrome. The latter condition will cause the feet to turn white while exposed to cold temperatures. There are known to be several symptoms associated with poor circulation, which may include cramping in the legs and feet, experiencing a tingling or numbing sensation, or having cold feet. If you have any of the above symptoms, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist, so a proper diagnosis can be performed.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor 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 our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment of Poor Blood Circulation in the Feet
Monday, 05 November 2018 00:00

Foot Pain May Affect Proper Balance

When our feet feel good, maintaining daily activities may be accomplished with ease. This is also true for the elder population, and additional care may be needed to achieve this. Pain in the feet may affect balance and this may possibly lead to injuries, which may be a result of falling. Research has shown that elder’s will benefit by understanding the need to practice proper foot hygiene in addition to seeking medical care if any foot pain is noticeable. It may help to wear footwear that fits correctly, which may diminish the possibility of specific foot conditions from developing. This includes ingrown toenails, hammertoe, or bunions. When the proper weight is maintained, the body will feel will better, in addition to positively affecting the overall health of the feet. Please speak with a podiatrist if you would like additional information about how to take care of elderly feet.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

The Elderly and their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions 

  • Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet, and can hide many life threating medical conditions.
  • Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.
  • Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:
  • Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe
  • Shoes that don’t fit properly
  • Pressure sores
  • Loss of circulation in legs & feet
  • Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Elderly Foot Care

Some authorities have determined that cracked heels may develop as a result of the lack of attention the skin on the heels generally gets. There are many causes why this condition may occur, and having dry skin is generally the most common reason why this ailment may develop. Additionally, if the heels should endure excess pressure from being overweight, the chances of developing cracked heels may increase. There may also be a vitamin deficiency in the body, which may lead to the formation of heel fissures. If you stand for the majority of the day or frequently wear open-back sandals, the skin on the heels may gradually become dry and may lead to this uncomfortable condition. Partial relief may be obtained in washing and drying the feet thoroughly, followed by utilizing a good moisturizer. If you have this condition, please counsel with a podiatrist to learn about preventive measures and additional treatment options for cracked heels.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How do you get them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels

Many people mistake a stubbed toe with a broken toe. This may be a common error because they both produce considerable pain and discomfort. If a toe is broken, it’s important to obtain proper treatment as quickly as possible. If the toe is left untreated, it may affect walking and running ability in addition to experiencing chronic pain. There is known to be a few differences between a broken toe and a sprained toe. These may include bruising, pain in the exact area of the break, or a possible dislocation, which may accompany a fractured toe. A sprained toe may have more generalized pain in the surrounding area where the injury has occurred, although there may be considerable bruising. If you feel you have broken or sprained your toe, it may be beneficial to seek the counsel of a podiatrist to obtain a correct diagnosis and offer the best course of treatment.

Broken toes may cause a lot of pain and should be treated as soon as possible. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is a Broken Toe?

A broken toe occurs when one or more of the toe bones of the foot are broken after an injury. Injuries such as stubbing your toe or dropping a heavy object on it may cause a toe fracture.

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Swelling
  • Pain (with/without wearing shoes)
  • Stiffness
  • Nail Injury

Although the injured toe should be monitored daily, it is especially important to have a podiatrist look at your toe if you have severe symptoms. Some of these symptoms include: worsening or new pain that is not relieved with medication, sores, redness, or open wounds near the toe.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 15 October 2018 00:00

Symptoms of Toenail Fungus

A condition that is referred to as onychomycosis is commonly known as a fungal infection of the toenails. It is common among people who have sweaty feet or enjoy spending time swimming. It may occur as a result of the small fungi seeping through tiny cuts in the skin, or possibly lodging between the nail and the nail bed. It may be common to find this type of infection in the toenails because of the warm environment the shoes and socks provide. There are several symptoms associated with this condition, including having a yellow, white or brown appearance, the nail becoming brittle and breaking easily, or the nail becomes uncomfortable. Despite the unsightly appearance, they typically do not pose a health threat unless the patient is diabetic. Research has shown there may be preventative measures that can be taken, including washing and drying the feet, especially between the toes, trimming the nails properly and frequently, and avoiding wearing other people’s shoes. If you feel you have a toenail fungus, it’s suggested to speak with a podiatrist as quickly as possible for a correct diagnosis and to learn about treatment options.

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Treating Toenail Fungus

If you experience any level of pain on the outside of your foot, it is possible that you may have injured your cuboid bone. You may begin to notice an uncomfortable sensation when you try to bear weight on the outer edge of the foot or your toes may become weak. The condition that is known as cuboid syndrome may be a result of this particular bone in the foot becoming torn or damaged. There may be several symptoms associated with this ailment including swelling and redness surrounding the affected area, loss of strength in the ankle, or extreme tenderness on the side of the foot. One of the main causes of cuboid syndrome are sprains that are incurred to the ankle. This can happen as a result of falling, repeated strain from frequent jumping or running, or from an activity such as misjudging a  step off a curb. If you feel you have injured this portion of your foot, it is suggested to speak with a podiatrist for a diagnosis and treatment technique that is correct for you.

Cuboid syndrome, also known as cuboid subluxation, occurs when the joints and ligaments near the cuboid bone in the foot become torn. If you have cuboid syndrome, consult with Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Cuboid syndrome is a common cause of lateral foot pain, which is pain on the outside of the foot. The condition may happen suddenly due to an ankle sprain, or it may develop slowly overtime from repetitive tension through the bone and surrounding structures.

Causes

The most common causes of cuboid syndrome include:

  • Injury – The most common cause of this ailment is an ankle sprain.
  • Repetitive Strain – Tension placed through the peroneus longus muscle from repetitive activities such as jumping and running may cause excessive traction on the bone causing it to sublux.
  • Altered Foot Biomechanics – Most people suffering from cuboid subluxation have flat feet.

Symptoms

A common symptom of cuboid syndrome is pain along the outside of the foot which can be felt in the ankle and toes. This pain may create walking difficulties and may cause those with the condition to walk with a limp.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of cuboid syndrome is often difficult, and it is often misdiagnosed. X-rays, MRIs and CT scans often fail to properly show the cuboid subluxation. Although there isn’t a specific test used to diagnose cuboid syndrome, your podiatrist will usually check if pain is felt while pressing firmly on the cuboid bone of your foot.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are ice therapy, rest, exercise, taping, and orthotics.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Cuboid Syndrome

People who regularly stretch their feet and toes are more likely aware of the many benefits that may accompany these movements. These may include increased blood flow into the feet, the muscles in the sole of the feet being properly stretched, and possibly helping to balance flat feet or fallen arches. Many people may discover moderate relief from the tired sensation that is often felt in the ankles and feet, in addition to any swelling that may be present. Flexibility is generally improved as a result of improved strength. There are effective foot and toe stretches that can be performed, including pointing and flexing the toes in one direction multiple times, then repeating in the other direction. Please consult with a podiatrist if you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching the feet and toes.

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 Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. 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 offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Stretch Your Feet
Wednesday, 26 September 2018 00:00

Before you start dancing...

 

Monday, 24 September 2018 00:00

Causes for Blisters on the Feet

The majority of runners realize the negative impact blisters on the feet can have on their chosen sport of running. The small areas appearing on the toes, heel, or bottom of the foot filled with fluid may be susceptible to infection if not treated in a prompt fashion. Research has shown the cause of this condition may be from increased friction and pressure that are inflicted on the toes. There may be several reasons for this to occur including wearing shoes and socks that fit incorrectly or having the skin become too soft as a result of excess moisture,which may typically originate from sweat. It’s important to properly measure your feet for a correct fit, allowing a half size larger than your regular shoe to accommodate the swelling that incurs as running progresses. Additional causes for blisters to develop may be enduring extreme sunburn or frostbite. The body will naturally protect the affected skin by encasing it in a fluid based environment, while healing takes place. If you are afflicted with a blister on your foot, it’s advised to consult with a podiatrist to learn how to properly treat this condition.

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 Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. 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 offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Blisters
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