If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site

Huntersville 704-987-9585

Mooresville 704-235-0474

Mountain Island 704-971-4000

Blog

Monday, 23 July 2018 00:00

What are the Causes of Neuropathy?

A condition referred to as peripheral neuropathy typically occurs as a result of malfunctioning nerves that are damaged. This condition may be caused by an inherited gene, an injury, or an infection. It has been known to cause discomfort and pain, a tingling feeling in the feet, in addition to a sensation of heaviness in the lower limbs. Recent research has shown that approximately 60 percent of diabetic patients experience some type of nerve damage, which may often be a result of elevated blood sugar levels. To determine the severity of neuropathy, there are several tests that may be performed. These may include undergoing an MRI, which may determine if a tumor or disc is pressing on a nerve, an electromyography, which is used to evaluate the body’s nerve signals, or a nerve conduction study, which may aid in assessing the nerves for correct transmitting information. If you are afflicted with neuropathy, it’s suggested to consult with a podiatrist as quickly as possible for additional information.

Neuropathy

Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be trigged by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy, whether it be diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, or others, will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Neuropathy
Monday, 23 July 2018 00:00

Causes of Athlete’s Foot

A fungal infection that develops in the skin of the feet, which may be referred to as athlete's foot or tinea pedis, often produces discomfort and pain. Probable symptoms may include itching and burning skin in addition to blisters that may form in between the toes. Athlete’s foot is typically caused by a fungus that thrives in warm and dark environments and may spread when the foot touches the contaminated area. This type of fungus often lives in public showers and pools, and may be prevented from spreading by wearing appropriate shoes in these areas. If you are affected by this condition, it may be beneficial to wash your feet often followed by thoroughly drying in between the toes. If your socks should become wet from excess moisture, it’s important to change them frequently in addition to wearing cotton socks which may aid in absorbing additional perspiration. For severe infections, a consultation with a podiatrist is advised for more aggressive treatment options

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle.  Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning, and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, Athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of Athlete’s foot, as well as help in determining which treatment options are best for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Athlete's Foot 101

Hammertoe may often be the result of a muscle imbalance in the toes. It is typically a painful and uncomfortable foot condition and is generally caused by wearing poorly fitting shoes or an inherited trait. If high heels are frequently worn, the toes may be crammed into an area that may be too small for the toes to move about in. When this happens, the toes may be forced into a flexed position for long periods of a time. If this condition is not treated promptly, they may permanently remain in a bent position, which may require surgery to repair. Additionally, a toe that has been stubbed or broken may be a cause of hammertoe. Other foot conditions such as corns and calluses may develop on top of the toes as a result of hammertoe. If you feel you have hammertoe, it is strongly suggested to speak to a podiatrist who can suggest proper techniques for a successful treatment.

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that occurs due to an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, or ligaments that normally hold the toe straight. It can be caused by the type of shoes you wear, your foot structure, trauma, and certain disease processes.

Symptoms

  • Painful and/or difficult toe movement
  • Swelling
  • Joint stiffness
  • Calluses/Corns
  • Physical deformity

Risk Factors

  • Age – The risk of hammertoe increases with age
  • Sex – Women are more likely to have hammertoe compared to men
  • Toe Length – You are more likely to develop hammertoe if your second toe is longer than your big toe
  • Certain Diseases – Arthritis and diabetes may make you more likely to develop hammertoe

Treatment

If you have hammertoe, you should change into a more comfortable shoe that provides enough room for your toes. Exercises such as picking up marbles may strengthen and stretch your toe muscles. Nevertheless, it is important to seek assistance from a podiatrist in order to determine the severity of your hammertoe and see which treatment option will work best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Monday, 02 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 one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors 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 Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Toenail Fungus

A heel spur is known to be an uncomfortable and painful condition which develops in the heel of the foot and will typically affect the surrounding area. It is a small bony protrusion that grows in between the heel and the arch, and is often referred to as “heel spur syndrome.” If you are afflicted with this condition, there may be strong symptoms indicating its existence, including a sharp pain in the heel, which may be especially prominent in the morning, severe tenderness, or a consistent ache that may often be felt throughout the day. Research has shown that age may play a significant role in the formation of heel spurs and the pads in the heels may wear down as a result of this. This may cause diminished shock absorption in the heel which may cause this ailment to develop. If you would like additional information about heel spurs, a podiatrist can help you with a proper diagnosis and suggest correct treatment options.

Heel spurs can be incredibly painful and sometimes may make you unable to participate in physical activities. To get medical care for your heel spurs, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will do everything possible to treat your condition.

Heels Spurs

Heel spurs are formed by calcium deposits on the back of the foot where the heel is. This can also be caused by small fragments of bone breaking off one section of the foot, attaching onto the back of the foot. Heel spurs can also be bone growth on the back of the foot and may grow in the direction of the arch of the foot.

Older individuals usually suffer from heel spurs and pain sometimes intensifies with age. One of the main conditions spurs are related to is plantar fasciitis.

Pain

The pain associated with spurs is often because of weight placed on the feet. When someone is walking, their entire weight is concentrated on the feet. Bone spurs then have the tendency to affect other bones and tissues around the foot. As the pain continues, the feet will become tender and sensitive over time.

Treatments

There are many ways to treat heel spurs. If one is suffering from heel spurs in conjunction with pain, there are several methods for healing. Medication, surgery, and herbal care are some options.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Heel Spurs

If you have suffered a broken toe, it is typically a result of an injury that has occurred or from a heavy object falling on the foot. Often, people may stub or jam their toe which may lead to the toe becoming fractured. There are several symptoms that are easily identifiable, including bruising, pain while walking, or a deformed look to the toe. In more severe fractures, the bone may protrude from the skin and the nail may become injured which may cause a subungual hematoma, often referred to as an open fracture. Typical treatment methods may consist of the toe being placed in a splint which prevents mobility to ensure proper healing. A simple fracture generally will heal completely in approximately six weeks but complications may develop such as arthritis, pain, and stiffness from a more severely broken toe. A podiatrist can properly diagnose a broken toe and it’s advised to schedule a consultation when the injury occurs.

A broken toe can be very painful and lead to complications if not properly fixed. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What to Know About a Broken Toe

Although most people try to avoid foot trauma such as banging, stubbing, or dropping heavy objects on their feet, the unfortunate fact is that it is a common occurrence. Given the fact that toes are positioned in front of the feet, they typically sustain the brunt of such trauma. When trauma occurs to a toe, the result can be a painful break (fracture).

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Throbbing pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising on the skin and toenail
  • The inability to move the toe
  • Toe appears crooked or disfigured
  • Tingling or numbness in the toe

Generally, it is best to stay off of the injured toe with the affected foot elevated.

Severe toe fractures may be treated with a splint, cast, and in some cases, minor surgery. Due to its position and the pressure it endures with daily activity, future complications can occur if the big toe is not properly treated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 11 June 2018 00:00

What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition, which causes the immune system to attack the joints. This condition is known to affect the hands, feet, and wrists. There are general symptoms to look for if you suspect that you may be suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. The most common symptom of this condition is joint pain. This pain usually presents itself as a throbbing sensation or as a constant ache in the joint. This joint pain is usually at its worst after periods of inactivity, which is why people with RA feel the majority of this type of pain in the morning. Symptoms of this condition may vary from person to person, and if you suspect that you have rheumatoid arthritis in your feet, you should speak with your podiatrist as soon as possible.

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 one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors 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.

Symptoms

  • Swelling and pain in the feet
  • Stiffness in the feet
  • Pain on the ball or sole of feet
  • Joint shift and deformation

Diagnosis

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 Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Feet
Monday, 04 June 2018 00:00

Types of Heel Pain

An ailment that is known as plantar fasciitis is one of the most common foot conditions that involves heel pain. The general area for this to occur is typically under the heel and the pain may radiate throughout the foot. Most heel pain is caused by repetitive action which may include consistent pounding that the foot endures. In plantar fasciitis, the pain that is felt is often a result of inflammation of the soft tissue fibers. Other forms of heel pain include heel bursitis, tarsal tunnel syndrome, and Achilles tendinosis. Relief may be found in many of these conditions by wearing correct shoes that offer adequate cushioning or possibly considering the option of wearing orthotics that are designed specifically for your foot. A consultation with a podiatrist is suggested to acquire additional information about the causes and treatments for heel pain.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain
Tuesday, 29 May 2018 00:00

Healing Your Heel Pain

Plantar fasciitis tends to gradually develop over time and usually only affects one foot. Common symptoms for those with plantar fasciitis are a dull, sharp, or burning pain in the bottom of the foot. This pain tends to start up after prolonged activity due to increased inflammation. People who are overweight are at a greater risk of developing plantar fasciitis because of the increased amount of pressure on the plantar fascia ligaments. Consequently, women who are pregnant also are more likely to develop plantar fasciitis. Other people who are more likely to develop the condition are those with either flat feet, or high arches in their feet. Thankfully, there are some ways to treat pain that stems from plantar fasciitis. One of the most common methods of treatment is icing. In addition, stretching the calves will help alleviate pain in the foot. If you have any questions or concerns regarding plantar fasciitis, a consultation with a podiatrist is advised.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affects people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
Monday, 21 May 2018 00:00

Causes of Athlete’s Foot

If you experience redness, itchiness, or blisters on the soles of the feet, you may have what is referred to as tinea pedis, or more commonly, athlete’s foot. It is caused by a fungal infection, and is can be extremely contagious. This type of fungus lives and thrives in moist places, and is commonly found in public showers, pools, and surrounding areas. It may affect the area between the toes in addition to the soles of the feet. There are several symptoms of athlete's foot that may be observed, including a rash that may appear, peeling skin on the soles of the feet, or an uncomfortable burning sensation. To prevent this condition from occurring it's suggested to wear appropriate shoes in public places, and to change your socks daily to avoid excessive perspiration between the toes. If you are experiencing chronic or severe athlete’s foot please schedule a consultation with a podiatrist.

Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is often an uncomfortable condition to experience. Thankfully, podiatrists specialize in treating athlete’s foot and offer the best treatment options. If you have any questions about athlete’s foot, consult with one of our podiatrists from Carolina Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality treatment.

What is Athlete’s Foot?

Tinea pedis, more commonly known as athlete’s foot, is a non-serious and common fungal infection of the foot. Athlete’s foot is contagious and can be contracted by touching someone who has it or infected surfaces. The most common places contaminated by it are public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools. Once contracted, it grows on feet that are left inside moist, dark, and warm shoes and socks.

Prevention

The most effective ways to prevent athlete’s foot include:

  • Thoroughly washing and drying feet
  • Avoid going barefoot in locker rooms and public showers
  • Using shower shoes in public showers
  • Wearing socks that allow the feet to breathe
  • Changing socks and shoes frequently if you sweat a lot

Symptoms:

Athlete’s foot initially occurs as a rash between the toes. However, if left undiagnosed, it can spread to the sides and bottom of the feet, toenails, and if touched by hand, the hands themselves. Symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Burning
  • Itching
  • Scaly and peeling skin

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is quick and easy. Skin samples will be taken and either viewed under a microscope or sent to a lab for testing. Sometimes, a podiatrist can diagnose it based on simply looking at it. Once confirmed, treatment options include oral and topical antifungal medications.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Huntersville, Mooresville, and Mountain Island, NC. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Athlete's Foot
Page 2 of 10