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.Read more about Every Day Foot Care
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, CWS-P. 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.Read more about Limb Salvage
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.
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?
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 Bunions
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 occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.
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.
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.Read more about Ingrown Toenail Care
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
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 Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
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.
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.
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.
There are many similar symptoms between ankle sprains and ankle strains. These may include the patient experiencing swelling and pain in and around the ankle in addition to the foot showing signs of instability. The differences may often be indicated by the location of the pain. People who experience ankle sprains may often notice bruising, limited mobility in the foot and may hear a popping noise as the injury occurs. An ankle strain may be the result of overusing the muscles and tendons in the ankle, and it may occur while participating in sports that involve running and jumping. If you have incurred an ankle injury, you may want to consider speaking with a podiatrist who can properly diagnosis and treat ankle pain.
Foot and ankle trauma is common among athletes and the elderly. If you have concerns that you may have experienced trauma to the foot and ankle, 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.
Foot and ankle trauma cover a range of injuries all over the foot; common injuries include:
Symptoms of foot and ankle injuries vary depending on the injury, but more common ones include:
To properly diagnose the exact type of injury, podiatrists will conduct a number of different tests. Some of these include sensation and visual tests, X-rays, and MRIs. Medical and family histories will also be taken into account.
Once the injury has been diagnosed, the podiatrist can than offer the best treatment options for you. In less severe cases, rest and keeping pressure off the foot may be all that’s necessary. Orthotics, such as a specially made shoes, or immobilization devices, like splints or casts, may be deemed necessary. Finally, if the injury is severe enough, surgery may be necessary.
Rheumatoid arthritis affects approximately 400,000 people in the UK. Most sufferers tend to be between the ages of 40 and 50. This condition is known to affect the joints, and many people experience the effects of arthritis in their feet. Some of the initial warning signs of rheumatoid arthritis are swelling, redness, or tenderness in the joints. If you suffer from joint pain and tenderness for a period lasting around or longer than six weeks, there is a good chance you may be suffering from arthritis. Another common symptom is stiffness felt in the joints when first waking up. Often times, joints in the feet will become painful in those with rheumatoid arthritis. Additionally, many arthritis sufferers notice that if a joint on one side of the body is in pain, the same joint on the other side of the body will be in pain as well. If you are afflicted with this condition it’s suggested to schedule a consultation with a podiatrist to determine the severity of this ailment and discuss the best treatments options available.
Because RA affects more than just your joints, including the joints in your feet and ankles, it is important to seek early diagnosis from your podiatrist if you feel like the pain in your feet might be caused by RA. For more information, contact Dr. James Kutchback of James Kutchback, DPM, CWS-P. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.
What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s own immune system attacks the membranes surrounding the joints. Inflammation of the lining and eventually the destruction of the joint’s cartilage and bone occur, causing severe pain and immobility.
Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Feet
Although RA usually attacks multiple bones and joints throughout the entire body, almost 90 percent of cases result in pain in the foot or ankle area.
Quick diagnosis of RA in the feet is important so that the podiatrist can treat the area effectively. Your doctor will ask you about your medical history, occupation, and lifestyle to determine the origin of the condition. Rheumatoid Factor tests help to determine if someone is affected by the disease.
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 Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Feet