We Can Treat Your Foot or Ankle Pain

Foot or ankle pain can negatively affect your day-to-day life and can occur due to several different conditions. Pain can also be an indicator of a more serious underlying condition, which is why you should seek professional help as soon as you notice any abnormalities in your feet.

Symptoms of Heel Spurs

A heel spur is a sharp, bony outgrowth often resulting from irritation of the plantar fascia, known as plantar fasciitis. Increased strain on the Achilles tendon can exacerbate this growth, either beneath the foot, a lower heel spur, or at the back of the heel, a rear heel spur. While visible on X-rays, heel spurs may not be apparent externally. Symptoms include stabbing heel pain, especially when weight is applied, particularly in the morning. Inflammation can cause swelling and warmth, sometimes accompanied by a visible protrusion. Though occasionally asymptomatic, heel spurs can significantly impact mobility and comfort. Common causes involve prolonged or uneven pressure during walking or running, leading to inflammation of the plantar fascia or Achilles tendon. Addressing these issues involves reducing strain, managing inflammation, and enhancing foot muscle strength. Appropriate footwear, weight management, and foot muscle activation are important preventive measures. If you are suffering from a painful heel spur, it is suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist who can make a proper diagnosis and offer you treatment options fitting your situation.

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 Dean Kim, DPM from Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor 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 condition's 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 office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

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Surgery for Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is characterized by inflammation of the plantar fascia in the feet, leading to extreme pain and limiting daily activities. When conservative treatments fail to provide adequate relief, surgical intervention may become an option. Surgery for plantar fasciitis involves partial release of the plantar fascia from tension and may include removal of heel bone spurs. This procedure is often performed under local anesthesia, with same-day discharge. Post-surgery, patients will undergo a strict recovery regimen. Refraining from strenuous activities for the first month and using supportive footwear and aids such as air casts and crutches may be prescribed by a podiatrist. Regularly changing the dressing is vital to prevent infection. A gradual return to activities may begin after a month, and certain exercises can help to restore foot movements and muscle strength. While tissues may heal within weeks, full recovery from plantar fasciitis surgery typically takes several months. To find out whether surgery for plantar fasciitis is an option for you, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to assess treatment choices.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary to treat a foot ailment. To learn more, contact Dean Kim, DPM of Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

When Is Surgery Necessary?

Foot and ankle surgery is generally reserved for cases in which less invasive, conservative procedures have failed to alleviate the problem. Some of the cases in which surgery may be necessary include:

  • Removing foot deformities like bunions and bone spurs
  • Severe arthritis that has caused bone issues
  • Cosmetic reconstruction

What Types of Surgery Are There?

The type of surgery you receive will depend on the nature of the problem you have. Some of the possible surgeries include:

  • Bunionectomy for painful bunions
  • Surgical fusion for realignment of bones
  • Neuropathy decompression surgery to treat nerve damage

Benefits of Surgery

Although surgery is usually a last resort, it can provide more complete pain relief compared to non-surgical methods and may allow you to finally resume full activity.

Surgical techniques have also become increasingly sophisticated. Techniques like endoscopic surgery allow for smaller incisions and faster recovery times.

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

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Relief From Cracked Heels

Cracked heels can be bothersome and even painful. They often occur due to dry skin and excessive pressure on the feet, especially while wearing open-back shoes or spending a lot of time on hard surfaces. Moisturizing the heels regularly with emollients helps restore suppleness and prevent further cracking. If the condition persists despite conservative treatment, it is suggested that you visit a podiatrist. Possible treatments include heel cups to redistribute weight and support the heel pad, or medical glue to help cracks heal. Podiatrists can provide personalized care for optimal foot health, and also address any underlying conditions, such as diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, and neuropathy, which may contribute to cracked heels. If you have developed cracked heels, it is strongly suggested that you confer with a podiatrist who can provide effective treatment options that are correct for you.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dean Kim, DPM from Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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How Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome Is Treated

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, a condition in which the tibial nerve is compressed as it passes through the tarsal tunnel in the ankle, has a variety of treatment options. Conservative treatment is usually recommended at first. This may include rest and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs to reduce inflammation and alleviate pain. Shoe choice is also important. Wearing supportive footwear and using orthotic inserts can help alleviate pressure on the affected nerve. In cases where conservative measures do not resolve symptoms, corticosteroid injections may be administered to reduce inflammation and provide relief. Severe or persistent cases may require surgical intervention to release the compressed nerve. Each treatment approach is tailored to the patient's specific symptoms and needs. If you have pain and numbness along the inner side of the ankle or bottom of your foot and suspect you have developed tarsal tunnel syndrome, it is suggested you consult a podiatrist who can diagnose you and offer personalized treatment. 

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Dean Kim, DPM of Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. 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 our office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Keep Your Feet Healthy So You Can Stay Active

Have your feet inspected by a professional before starting a new sport or physical activity. Taking charge of your foot health will keep you in good physical condition and can help you avoid a potential injury, such as a fracture or sprained ankle.

Prevent injuries and see a foot specialist.

Managing Chronic Foot Pain in the Elderly

Foot pain is prevalent among older individuals, affecting at least 25 percent of them. Unfortunately, the management of foot pain is often overlooked in geriatric healthcare, leading many seniors to endure chronic foot pain unnecessarily, which impacts their overall well-being. Research indicates that foot pain is a common and debilitating issue in older adults, but conservative interventions, including regular foot care, footwear guidance, and foot orthoses, have proven effective in reducing pain. These interventions not only alleviate foot discomfort but also contribute to maintaining mobility and independence in this age group. If you are in the elderly population and have foot pain, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment to help improve your quality of life.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Dean Kim, DPM from Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. 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 our office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Symptoms and Prevalence of Toenail Fungus

Toenail fungus, clinically known as onychomycosis, is a common condition that affects a significant portion of the population. This fungal infection typically occurs when microscopic fungi invade the toenails, leading to discoloration, thickening, and crumbling. The warm and moist environment inside shoes provides an ideal breeding ground for these fungi, making toenails susceptible to infection. Symptoms include changes in nail texture and color, ranging from yellowing to darkening. As the infection progresses, nails may become brittle and emit a foul odor. Toenail fungus is more prevalent than one may think, with a considerable percentage of the population grappling with this condition. Recognizing the symptoms early on is essential for effective management, as untreated toenail fungus can lead to persistent discomfort and potential complications. If you have a toenail fungus infection, it is suggested that you visit a podiatrist who can confirm the diagnosis and offer correct treatment methods, which often includes prescribed medication.

If left untreated, toenail fungus may spread to other toenails, skin, or even fingernails. If you suspect you have toenail fungus it is important to seek treatment right away. For more information about treatment, contact Dean Kim, DPM of Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Symptoms

  • Warped or oddly shaped nails
  • Yellowish nails
  • Loose/separated nail
  • Buildup of bits and pieces of nail fragments under the nail
  • Brittle, broken, thickened nail

Treatment

If self-care strategies and over-the-counter medications does not help your fungus, your podiatrist may give you a prescription drug instead. Even if you find relief from your toenail fungus symptoms, you may experience a repeat infection in the future.

Prevention

In order to prevent getting toenail fungus in the future, you should always make sure to wash your feet with soap and water. After washing, it is important to dry your feet thoroughly especially in between the toes. When trimming your toenails, be sure to trim straight across instead of in a rounded shape. It is crucial not to cover up discolored nails with nail polish because that will prevent your nail from being able to “breathe”.

In some cases, surgical procedure may be needed to remove the toenail fungus. Consult with your podiatrist about the best treatment options for your case of toenail fungus.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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How Wearing High Heels Affects Runners

The impact of wearing high heels may profoundly affect the feet. Recent studies explore the potential consequences of prolonged high heel use. Wearing high heels over an extended period can lead to increased energy expenditure and less efficient walking mechanics. The key issue for runners is the restriction of ankle dorsiflexion, the movement that allows your shinbone to pivot over your foot. This limitation not only shortens hip extension and stride but also interferes with the smooth activation of your calf and other muscles during walking. These findings align with the perspective of those advocating for minimalist shoes, emphasizing the influence of any heel, regardless of its size. When it comes to the frequency of high heel usage for runners, the ideal recommendation is to avoid prolonged periods of wear. Occasional use for short durations, such as a few hours at social events, is considered less concerning. However, habitual use during extended periods such as office hours or weekends may bring about lasting changes in biomechanics. Balancing style with foot health involves making informed choices to ensure optimal comfort and functionality for your feet when you run. It is suggested that you consult a podiatrist for guidance about the long term dangers of wearing high heels.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Dean Kim, DPM from Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

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

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Poor Foot Circulation and Physical Interventions

Poor foot circulation refers to a condition where blood flow to the feet is compromised, leading to various types of discomfort and health issues. These often arise from underlying conditions, like peripheral artery disease, diabetes, or vascular disorders, which hinder the efficient transport of oxygen and nutrients to the feet. Cold feet, numbness, and tingling sensations are common indicators of inadequate blood circulation. Implementing effective physical interventions is paramount in managing this condition. Regular exercise, such as walking or gentle stretches, promotes blood flow and strengthens the muscles that assist in circulation. Elevating the legs when sitting or lying down helps to reduce swelling and encourages blood flow. Proper hydration and maintaining a healthy weight also contribute significantly to overall circulatory health. If you have poor circulation and notice symptoms in your feet, it is strongly suggested that you consult a podiatrist who can guide you toward effective treatment methods.

While poor circulation itself isn’t a condition; it is a symptom of another underlying health condition you may have. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dean Kim, DPM of Greater Texas Foot & Ankle Specialist. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) can potentially lead to poor circulation in the lower extremities. PAD is a condition that causes the blood vessels and arteries to narrow. In a linked condition called atherosclerosis, the arteries stiffen up due to a buildup of plaque in the arteries and blood vessels. These two conditions can cause a decrease in the amount of blood that flows to your extremities, therefore resulting in pain.

Symptoms

Some of the most common symptoms of poor circulation are:

  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Throbbing or stinging pain in limbs
  • Pain
  • Muscle Cramps

Treatment for poor circulation often depends on the underlying condition that causes it. Methods for treatment may include insulin for diabetes, special exercise programs, surgery for varicose veins, or compression socks for swollen legs.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Frisco, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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