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For those individuals who decide to pursue a career in podiatry, they are most likely aware of the many advantages this field may offer. Recent research has shown that state of the art technology is frequently used to perform precise procedures. This has become necessary in properly responding to the high demand of patients who have specific foot conditions. An additional advantage of choosing this profession may be the flexible work hours, which may be beneficial if a podiatrist decides to become self-employed. Certain disadvantages that exist may include working with feet that have an unpleasant odor. Additionally, many new graduates realize that aggressive networking is recommended to ensure a steady influx of patients. It is suggested to speak with a podiatrist if you are considering pursuing a career in podiatry.

If you are dealing with pain in your feet and ankles, you may want to seek help from a podiatrist. Feel free to 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.

What is a Podiatrist?

A podiatrist is a doctor of podiatric medicine who diagnoses and treats conditions of the foot, ankle, and related structures of the leg. Your podiatrist may specialize in a certain field such as sports medicine, wound care, pediatrics, and diabetic care. Podiatrists have the ability to become board certified through training, clinical experience, and then taking an exam.

What Do Podiatrists Do?

On a daily basis, a podiatrist may perform the following activities:

  • Diagnose foot ailments such as ulcers, tumors, fractures, etc.
  • Use innovative methods to treat conditions
  • Use corrective orthotics, casts, and strappings to correct deformities
  • Correct walking patterns and balance
  • Provide individual consultations to patients

It is very important that you take care of your feet. It’s easy to take having healthy feet for granted, however foot problems tend to be among the most common health conditions. Podiatrists can help diagnose and treat a variety of feet related conditions so it is crucial that you visit one if you need assistance.

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

 

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Monday, 16 July 2018 00:00

What Does Toenail Fungus Look Like?

Toenail fungus is typically caused by a specific group of fungi that is referred to as dermatophytes. A prime environment for these fungi to thrive in is moist and warm places, and this commonly occurs in and on the toes. There may be small cuts on the toes where the fungi can enter or through a tiny area between the toenail and nail bed. Typical symptoms of toenail fungus may include yellowing and thickening of the nail and may lift off and break easily. Diabetic patients may be more susceptible in developing this condition because of their inability to promptly fight off infections. There are numerous ways to treat this ailment, and it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can perform a proper diagnosis and offer correct treatment options.

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.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

Toenail fungus is a condition that affects many people and can be especially hard to get rid of. Fortunately, there are several methods to go about treating and avoiding it.

Antifungals &  Deterrence

Oral antifungal medicine has been shown to be effective in many cases. It is important to consult with a podiatrist to determine the proper regiment for you, or potentially explore other options.

Talcum powder – applying powder on the feet and shoes helps keep the feet free of moisture and sweat.

Sandals or open toed shoes – Wearing these will allow air movement and help keep feet dry. They also expose your feet to light, which fungus cannot tolerate. Socks with moisture wicking material also help as well.

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

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Our feet are crucial parts of our bodies, and the appearance of them may say a lot about our health. The color of your toenails may reveal whether or not you have an infection; most of the time, toenail discoloration will be a sign of a fungal infection. Another sign of poor health you should look for on your feet, is the amount of hair on them. It is natural to have hair on your toes, and a gradual loss of hair could be a sign of poor circulation. Additionally, the big toe may say a lot about your health. A swollen big toe may be a sign of an acute gout attack or it may mean you have arthritis. If you are experiencing any of these foot issues, you should not hesitate to seek help from your podiatrist.

Everyday foot care is very important to prevent infection and other foot ailments. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Everyday Foot Care

Often, people take care of their bodies, face and hair more so than they do for their feet. But the feet are a very important aspect of our bodies, and one that we should pay more attention to. Without our feet, we would not be able to perform most daily tasks.

It is best to check your feet regularly to make sure there are no new bruises or cuts that you may not have noticed before. For dry feet, moisturizer can easily be a remedy and can be applied as often as necessary to the affected areas. Wearing shoes that fit well can also help you maintain good foot health, as well as making it easier to walk and do daily activities without the stress or pain of ill-fitting shoes, high heels, or even flip flops. Wearing clean socks with closed shoes is important to ensure that sweat and bacteria do not accumulate within the shoe. Clean socks help to prevent Athlete’s foot, fungi problems, bad odors, and can absorb sweat.

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.

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Wednesday, 04 July 2018 00:00

Reminder - When was the last time...

Custom orthotics (shoe inserts) should be replaced periodically. They need to fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles.

Recent research has shown that 60% of amputations that are not related to an injury occur in diabetic patients. The percentage rises to 80% when preceded by a foot ulcer. Infections due to diabetic foot are said to be the number one cause of leg amputations. The feet and nerves may become damaged from the high glucose levels that typically occur in diabetic patients, and this may cause a condition to occur that is referred to as neuropathy. Consequently, this may cause an inability to feel minor injuries and pain, and may ultimately lead to infections or gangrene. Many diabetics have learned that education about this condition may prevent the risk of foot ulcers and amputations. Additionally, learning how to properly care for the feet may play an essential role in possibly preventing painful foot ulcers.

Limb salvage can be an effective way in preventing the need for limb amputation. If you have diabetes, cancer, or any other condition that could lead to foot amputation if left unchecked, consult with Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What is Limb Salvage?

Limb salvage is the attempt of saving a limb, such as the foot from amputation. Podiatrists also try to make sure that there is enough function in the foot after the salvage that it is still usable. Diabetes is the number one cause of non-traumatic amputations in the United States. Those with diabetes experience poor blood circulation, which prevents proper healing of an ulcer. If the ulcer is left uncheck, it could become infected, which could result in the need for amputation.

However there are other causes as well, such as cancer and traumatic injury. Links between higher mortality rates and amputation have been found. This translates into higher healthcare costs, and a reduced quality of life and mobility for amputees. Podiatrists have attempted to increase the prevalence of limb salvage in an attempt to solve these issues.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Limb salvage teams have grown in recent years that utilize a number of different treatments to save the infected limb. This includes podiatrists that specialize in wound care, rehabilitation, orthotics, and surgery. Through a combination of these methods, limb salvage has been found to be an effective treatment for infected limbs, and as an alternative to amputation. Podiatrists will first evaluate the potential for limb salvage and determine if the limb can be saved or must be amputated. 

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.

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Monday, 25 June 2018 00:00

How Does a Bunion Form?

A bunion is considered to be a foot deformity that occurs on the side of the big toe. It will often begin slowly as the big toe gradually leans toward the toe next to it. A change in the structure of the foot may be a result of this, and this misalignment causes a bony protrusion to form on the side of the toe. A common cause of this condition may be because of a genetic trait that produces specific foot types, and research has shown this may be a contributing factor in the development of bunions. Choosing to wear poorly fitting shoes could make an already existing case of bunions even worse. There are several symptoms associated with the formation of bunions, which are often felt as a burning or numbing sensation. Additionally, the toe may become sore, red and tender. If you have developed a bunion, it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist to learn about correct treatment options.

If you are suffering from bunions, 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.

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 our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 18 June 2018 00:00

Causes of Ingrown Toenails

Onychocryptosis is another name for a condition known as ingrown toenails. It’s a painful ailment that is typically the result of the toenail growing into the skin. There are several causes for ingrown toenails including a genetic trait in which the toenails are too large for the nail bed, frequent running, or improper trimming of the nails. Additionally, an abnormal growth pattern may develop as a result of a fungal infection that may damage the root of the nail. This condition is easily identified by noticing any pain, tenderness, or swelling around the affected nail, and research has shown that proper treatment should begin as soon as possible. It may be beneficial to soak the foot in warm soapy water followed by applying a bandage to the affected toe. It’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can properly trim or remove the affected nail if a permanent solution is needed.  

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, 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.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

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.

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Living with foot pain is hard on your body.  Give us a call and let us find out what's wrong.

Research has shown it’s equally important to properly care for your child’s feet as it is their teeth and eyes. The foot does not fully develop until age 16, and your child's growing feet would benefit from being monitored by a podiatrist and this may prevent uncomfortable foot conditions from developing. There are some children who demonstrate awkward walking patterns, which may be a result of the toes turning abnormally in or out, or if the toes overlap or turn under. It’s suggested that wearing shoes before the child begins to walk may restrict the muscles and tendons from gaining maximum strength. This may be a result of the feet not being able to move and stretch with ease. When shoes are purchased as walking begins, the child will benefit from wearing shoes that offer comfort and stability. A podiatrist will be able to answer any questions you may have regarding the health of your child’s feet, so please schedule a consultation.

The health of a child’s feet is vital to their overall well-being. If you have any questions regarding foot health, 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.

Tips for Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

  • Make sure their shoes fit properly
  • Look for any signs of intoeing or outtoeing
  • Check to see if they have Clubfoot (condition that affects your child’s foot and ankle, twisting the heel and toes inward) which is one of the most common nonmajor birth defects.
  • Lightly cover your baby’s feet (Tight covers may keep your baby from moving their feet freely, and could prevent normal development)
  • Allow your toddler to go shoeless (Shoes can be restricting for a young child’s foot)
  • Cut toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails
  • Keep your child’s foot clean and dry
  • Cover cuts and scrapes. Wash any scratches with soap and water, and cover them with a bandage until they’ve healed.

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.

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Monday, 04 June 2018 00:00

What Causes Gout?

Severe pain that is experienced in the big toe and surrounding areas may be a condition referred to as gout. Since this condition is considered to be a form of arthritis, the joints in the toe may be stiff, causing difficulty in freely moving the foot. Research has shown the inflammation that typically accompanies this ailment originates from an overabundance of uric acid in the bloodstream. This is typically caused by crystals in the blood that lodge in the joints, and may form from the type of foods that are ingested. Research suggests that eating excess amounts of seafood, red meat or drinking alcohol may be contributing factors in developing gout. Other reasons may include a genetic trait, obesity, or health issues which involve the kidneys. It is beneficial to have a proper diagnosis performed which is often accomplished by undergoing an ultrasound or CT scan. If you are suffering from gout, it’s advised to speak to a podiatrist who can properly facilitate in implementing correct treatment methods.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

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.

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