Wondering how to choose a new foot doctor? If you are currently experiencing problems with one or both of your feet, then finding a local podiatrist who can diagnose and treat your foot problems is your next step. A podiatrist is a medical professional who also knows how to treat problems related to the ankle…
4 Common Podiatry Treatments
The word "podiatry" comes from two Greek roots meaning "foot" and "treatment." A podiatrist's education and training focuses primarily on diagnosing and treating conditions of the feet and ankles. To that end, they earn a special, separate type of degree that is different from that of a medical doctor, called a DPM, or Doctor of Podiatric Medicine. Some podiatrists perform surgery, although patients should check with each individual practitioner as it is not a requirement in the field.
Common podiatry treatments
The type of treatment required depends on the condition. Podiatry treatments can range from injections to surgical procedures, as well as more conservative measures such as RICE protocol or oral medications. The following treatments are among the most often performed.
1. Plantar fascia injection
The plantar fascia is a ligament found along the bottom of the foot. Its purpose is to support the arch. A number of factors, such as repetitive heel stress, can cause inflammation of the plantar fascia. When the inflammation persists despite conservative treatment, a podiatrist can perform a steroid injection into the plantar fascia to help calm the irritation.
2. Nail ablation
An ingrown toenail occurs when the nail cuts into the skin and tissue that surround it. This can cause pain and promote bacterial or fungal infection. Nail ablation is performed when other treatment measures have not been effective at treating the problem or preventing recurrence. It involves removing the nail completely and applying an acidic compound to the nailbed to prevent regrowth.
A bunion causes the big toe to turn inward and a bump to form along its base. Certain conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis, are risk factors for bunion formation. However, often the culprit behind a bunion is a pair of shoes that are too tight. Surgery may be required when a bunion causes pain that interferes with daily activities.
Bunionectomy is a broad term that includes more than 100 procedures. Some involve removing a portion of the bone, while others are used to move the toe back into a better position.
4. Morton's neurectomy
A neuroma is scar tissue that forms on a nerve due to inflammation. It can cause numbness, tingling, pain and swelling. A Morton's neuroma forms specifically between the third and fourth toes along the bottom of the foot. If conservative measures are inadequate to resolve the symptoms, the affected nerve may be removed altogether. A surgeon can either approach the nerve from the bottom of the foot for direct visualization or from the top to avoid a scar on the walking surface of the foot.
Because there are many conditions that can affect the feet and ankles, a podiatry practice may be wide-ranging or extremely focused. An initial discussion with a podiatrist to discuss the specific types of treatment the office provides is never a bad idea. A practitioner with limited experience with your particular condition should be able to make a referral to another provider who can perform the treatment you require.
Check out what others are saying about our services on Yelp: Read our Yelp reviews.
Heel spurs are calcium deposits that form at the bottom or back of the heel bone. As they grow, they effectively become an extension or outgrowth of the heel bone.Many people who have heel spurs do not even know that they have them unless they find themselves needing a foot x-ray for some unrelated reason.For…
Arch pain can limit your mobility if you fail to address its root cause and get treatment. Read on to learn about some common causes of arch pain. Each of your feet is made up of 26 bones that form two arches. These bones are held together by their shapes like a jigsaw puzzle. A…
Flat feet, also known as fallen arches, are common. Many people with flat feet go about their lives fairly oblivious to the fact that they have flat feet. But many others are affected by their flat feet, to varying degrees.Some put up with slight discomfort when they walk or run for a long time. Others…