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Rheumatoid arthritis or RA, is an autoimmune condition that can affect joints throughout the body. It often affects the joints of the feet and ankles. The most common joints in the feet and ankles affected by RA are the smaller joints of the toes, the joints of the forefoot, the subtalar joint between the two tarsal bones of the foot, and less commonly the ankle joint. Signs of RA in your feet include soreness, warmth and swelling of one or more joints that lasts for several days, joint erosion, joint instability, and pain. RA could also cause painful fluid-filled sacs or nodules to develop on the feet. For more information on the signs and symptoms of RA in the feet and what you can do to treat this condition, speak with a podiatrist today.

Arthritis can be a difficult condition to live with. If you are seeking treatment, contact Howard Waxman, DPM from Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Arthritic Foot Care  

Arthritis is a joint disorder that involves the inflammation of different joints in your body, such as those in your feet. Arthritis is often caused by a degenerative joint disease and causes mild to severe pain in all affected areas. In addition to this, swelling and stiffness in the affected joints can also be a common symptom of arthritis.

In many cases, wearing ill-fitting shoes can worsen the effects and pain of arthritis. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room can help your feet feel more comfortable. In cases of rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with proper arch support that contour to your feet can help immensely.

Alleviating Arthritic Pain

  • Exercises that stretch the foot can prevent further pain and injury and increase mobility
  • Most of the pain can be alleviated with anti-inflammatory drugs, heat, and topical medications
  • Massages can help temporarily alleviate pain.

It is best to see your doctor for the treatment that is right for your needs and symptoms. Conditions vary, and a podiatrist can help you determine the right method of care for your feet.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about How to Care for Your Arthritic Foot
Tuesday, 08 September 2020 00:00

How is an Achilles Tendon Injury Diagnosed?

The Achilles tendon is known to be the largest tendon in the body. It is located in the back of the leg and connects the calf to the heel. An injury to this tendon can cause severe pain and discomfort, and can happen for a variety of reasons. These can include wearing shoes that do not fit correctly, improperly warming up before running, or increasing a workout intensity too quickly. The common symptoms of an Achilles tendon injury can consist of swelling in the heel and surrounding areas, and it may be difficult to walk and stand. After a proper diagnosis is made, which generally consists of having an X-ray, ultrasound, or MRI performed, the correct treatment can begin. If you have endured an Achilles tendon injury, it is strongly suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who will determine what the best treatment is for you.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Howard Waxman, DPM of Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What are Achilles Tendon Injuries
Thursday, 03 September 2020 00:00

Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Monday, 31 August 2020 00:00

Do I Have an Ankle Sprain?

Unlike a strain, which is an injury to muscle or tendon tissue, a sprain occurs when there is an injury to a ligament. Ankle sprains can be categorized as being Grade 1, Grade 2, or Grade 3. A Grade 1 sprain means the fibers of a ligament have been stretched, not torn, whereas a Grade 2 sprain means the ligament has been partially torn. Grade 3 sprains are described as an injury that causes a ligament to completely tear or rupture. Common symptoms of an ankle sprain include bruising, pain, and swelling of the affected area. For a proper diagnosis and information on how to treat a sprain, please consult with a podiatrist.

Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact Howard Waxman, DPM from Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains are the result of a tear in the ligaments within the ankle. These injuries may happen when you make a rapid shifting movement while your foot is planted. A less common way to sprain your ankle is when your ankle rolls inward while your foot turns outward.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Pain at the sight of the tear
  • Bruising/Swelling
  • Ankle area is tender to touch
  • In severe cases, may hear/feel something tear
  • Skin discoloration

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

In many cases, the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevate) is used to treat ankle sprains. However, you should see a podiatrist to see which treatment option would work best with your injury. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

It is important to ask your doctor about rehab options after you receive treatment for your injury. Stretching, strength training, and balance exercises may help the ankle heal while also preventing further injury.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Ankle Sprains
Monday, 24 August 2020 00:00

What Is Causing My Heel Pain?

Heel pain is usually an overuse injury. One common source of heel pain is plantar fasciitis which occurs when the plantar fascia, the tissue connecting the heel to the bottom of the foot, becomes inflamed. Another source of heel pain is Achilles tendonitis, and this is the inflammation of the Achilles tendon. Heel spurs, which are a bony growth at the bottom of the heel, are also common sources of heel pain. Other factors that can lead to heel pain include stress fractures, tarsal tunnel syndrome, wear and tear of the heel pad, and heel bursitis. If you are suffering from any type of heel pain, it is important to consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Howard Waxman, DPM of Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor 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 one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain
Monday, 17 August 2020 00:00

Pain on the Top of the Foot

Many patients experience pain on the top of the foot. This can be a result of a fracture or sprain, and typically causes severe pain and discomfort. The fifth metatarsal is a bone that is located on the outside of the foot, and connects the little toe to the center of the foot. There are three types of fractures that can occur in this area of the foot. The middle of this bone may be affected if the foot twists unexpectedly, which is known as a midshaft fracture. A Jones fracture can be a hairline fracture that is caused by repeated stress. The third type of break is known as an avulsion fracture, and this may happen when a ligament pulls the fifth metatarsal out of place. If you have any pain in your feet, it is suggested that you speak to a podiatrist, who can effectively treat any type of foot pain.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Howard Waxman, DPM from Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Causes

Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Bunions
  • Hammertoes
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Bone Spurs
  • Corns
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ingrown Toenails
  • Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
  • Flat Feet
  • Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
  • And more

Diagnosis

To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Foot Pain
Monday, 10 August 2020 00:00

Why Biomechanics Are Important

In podiatry, biomechanics involves assessing the structure, alignment and function of the feet. The foot provides us with the ability to walk upright and has developed to adapt to whatever surfaces we walk on. Because the average person takes between 5,000 and 18,000 steps in a single day, the foot can experience stress from repetitiveness, resulting in injury. While options such as orthotics can help prevent injury, paying special attention to the strength and flexibility of the feet allow their function to improve. Therefore, if you are actively on your feet, make sure to consult with a podiatrist to help find any predisposed issues.

If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Howard Waxman, DPM from Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Biomechanics in Podiatry

Podiatric biomechanics is a particular sector of specialty podiatry with licensed practitioners who are trained to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and lower leg. Biomechanics deals with the forces that act against the body, causing an interference with the biological structures. It focuses on the movement of the ankle, the foot and the forces that interact with them.

A History of Biomechanics

  • Biomechanics dates back to the BC era in Egypt where evidence of professional foot care has been recorded.
  • In 1974, biomechanics gained a higher profile from the studies of Merton Root, who claimed that by changing or controlling the forces between the ankle and the foot, corrections or conditions could be implemented to gain strength and coordination in the area.

Modern technological improvements are based on past theories and therapeutic processes that provide a better understanding of podiatric concepts for biomechanics. Computers can provide accurate information about the forces and patterns of the feet and lower legs.

Understanding biomechanics of the feet can help improve and eliminate pain, stopping further stress to the foot.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about The Importance of Biomechanics in Podiatry

If you are suffering from tenderness, pain, or stiffness in the joints of your feet or ankles, call us to schedule an appointment.

Monday, 03 August 2020 00:00

Causes of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

The Tarsal Tunnel is a narrow tunnel in the ankle, next to the ankle bone, that serves as a pathway for nerves, veins, arteries and tendons. Tarsal tunnel syndrome occurs when the tibial nerve in this tunnel gets squeezed or pressed, resulting in multiple issues. One common cause of tarsal tunnel syndrome is flat feet because flat feet can cause the heel to turn outward and put pressure on the nerve. Additionally, a varicose vein, a cyst, a swollen tendon, or a bone spur can also put pressure on the nerve. Other causes of tarsal tunnel syndrome include swelling from conditions such as an ankle sprain, diabetes, or arthritis. If you are experiencing a tingling or burning sensation, numbness, or a shooting pain in the foot, you may be experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, and it is recommended that you consult with a podiatrist.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Howard Waxman, DPM of Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, which can also be called tibial nerve dysfunction, is an uncommon condition of misfiring peripheral nerves in the foot. The tibial nerve is the peripheral nerve in the leg responsible for sensation and movement of the foot and calf muscles. In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the tibial nerve is damaged, causing problems with movement and feeling in the foot of the affected leg.

Common Cause of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Involves pressure or an injury, direct pressure on the tibial nerve for an extended period of time, sometimes caused by other body structures close by or near the knee.
  • Diseases that damage nerves, including diabetes, may cause tarsal tunnel syndrome.
  • At times, tarsal tunnel syndrome can appear without an obvious cause in some cases.

The Effects of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

  • Different sensations, an afflicted person may experience pain, tingling, burning or other unusual sensations in the foot of the affected leg.
  • The foot muscles, toes and ankle become weaker, and curling your toes or flexing your foot can become difficult.
  • If condition worsens, infections and ulcers may develop on the foot that is experiencing the syndrome.

A physical exam of the leg can help identify the presence of tarsal tunnel syndrome. Medical tests, such as a nerve biopsy, are also used to diagnose the condition. Patients may receive physical therapy and prescriptive medication. In extreme cases, some may require surgery.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Monday, 27 July 2020 00:00

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

The plantar fascia is a thick band of fibrous tissue that connects the heel to the toes along the bottom of the foot. Since the plantar fascia works as a shock absorber and arch support, it can become painful when it is overloaded or overstressed.  This pain is known as plantar fasciitis.  Research has shown that pain is most commonly located on the inside of the heel and occurs during weight-bearing activities.  A podiatrist will be able to examine the foot and heel for further issues, particularly a stress fracture.  A podiatrist may also take X-rays or use an ultrasound machine to determine the extent of the injury. Some treatment options may include rest, a change in footwear, orthotics or physical therapy.  If you believe that you may be afflicted with plantar fasciitis, it is important to check with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Howard Waxman, DPM  from Pleasant Valley Podiatry. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Willoughby Hills and Broadview Heights, OH. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
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