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Bloomfield, CT 06002

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Monday, 19 October 2020 00:00

What to Do During a Gout Attack

Excess levels of uric acid in the blood may lead to the medical condition that is known as gout. Crystals can form in the joints of the big toe, and this can cause severe pain and discomfort. Additional symptoms that patients experience may consist of swelling, heat and redness, and it may become difficult to walk. Gout is considered to be a form of arthritis and it can develop for a variety of reasons. These can include genetic factors, eating foods that have high purine levels, or from taking certain medications. When a gout attack occurs it can be beneficial to rest and elevate the affected foot, as well as apply ice packs and take anti-inflammatory medication, and the pain may be reduced. Gout can be a debilitating foot condition, which is why you should consult with a podiatrist as quickly as possible so correct treatment options can be discussed.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

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.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

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.

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

Read more about Gout
Monday, 12 October 2020 00:00

Where Is the Tarsal Tunnel Located?

The tibial nerve is located in a small tunnel surrounded by tendons in the inner side of the ankle. Tarsal tunnel syndrome can develop when this specific nerve becomes compressed, and is often accompanied by pain and swelling. It may happen as a result of enduring an ankle injury, such as a sprain or fracture, or from having bone spurs. Mild relief may be found when the affected foot is elevated, and it may help to take anti-inflammatory medication. In severe cases, surgery can be a viable option to permanently reduce or eliminate the pain that is associated with this condition. If you have developed this ailment, it is strongly recommended that you speak with a podiatrist who can help you choose the correct treatment option.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM of Connecticut. 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 Bloomfield, CT. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Treating Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

When high heels are frequently worn, it may lead to the development of various foot conditions. These foot ailments can include plantar fasciitis, bunions, corn and calluses, or hammertoes. Patients who choose to have surgery performed may find wearing high heels to be more comfortable afterward, despite the fact that wearing this type of shoe may have initially caused the pain and discomfort. When high heels are worn, it can be easier for the ankle to twist, which may result in a fracture or sprain. It is generally suggested to wear flat shoes after surgery, and once flexibility, range of motion, and strength in the feet are restored, the body and feet can be more prepared to wear heels again. If you would like additional information about foot conditions that may be caused from wearing high heels, please consult with a podiatrist.

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. 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 Bloomfield, CT. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Effect of High Heels on the Feet
Tuesday, 29 September 2020 00:00

Wounds That Don't Heal Need to Be Checked

Your feet are covered most of the day. If you're diabetic, periodic screening is important for good health. Numbness is often a sign of diabetic foot and can mask a sore or wound.

Monday, 28 September 2020 00:00

Why Is My Heel So Painful?

The heel is the fatty pad that surrounds and cushions the heel bone in the back of the foot. Anyone can experience pain in their heel, but those who are physically active, middle aged, obese, or pregnant are said to be at a higher risk of suffering from heel pain. One common source of heel pain is plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis occurs when the plantar fascia, the tissue connecting the heel to the bottom of the foot, becomes inflamed. Some other causes of heel pain can be from ill fitting shoes, obesity, walking or standing on hard surfaces for extended periods of time, or even an abnormal walking gait. Other sources of pain include injuries such as stress fractures, bursitis, or heel spurs. If you are experiencing any type of pain in your heel, it is important to consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan that is correct for you. 

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM of Connecticut. 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 our office located in Bloomfield, CT. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain
Monday, 21 September 2020 00:00

Relief from Swollen Feet During Pregnancy

Swollen feet is a common symptom that many women experience during pregnancy. This can be a result of increased hormone levels as well as increased levels of fluids in the body. Additionally, the blood becomes thicker in pregnant women and the blood volume is said to increase up to 50%. Swollen feet can typically be noticed during the second trimester, but really amps up in the third trimester as the body continues to raise blood and fluid levels to prepare for the baby's arrival. Relief may be found when caffeine intake is limited and the feet are frequently elevated. It can help to drink plenty of fresh water daily as well. Research has also indicated that swelling may be reduced when less sodium is ingested, and it may be beneficial to eat foods that have adequate levels of potassium. If you would like more information about how pregnancy affects the feet and different ways to alleviate the swelling, please confer with a podiatrist.

Pregnant women with swollen feet can be treated with a variety of different methods that are readily available. For more information about other cures for swollen feet during pregnancy, consult with Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. Our doctor will attend to all of your foot and ankle needs.

What Foot Problems Can Arise During Pregnancy?

One problem that can occur is overpronation, which occurs when the arch of the foot flattens and tends to roll inward.  This can cause pain and discomfort in your heels while you’re walking or even just standing up, trying to support your baby.  

Another problem is edema, or swelling in the extremities. This often affects the feet during pregnancy but tends to occur in the later stages. 

How Can I Keep My Feet Healthy During Pregnancy?

  • Wearing orthotics can provide extra support for the feet and help distribute weight evenly
  • Minimize the amount of time spent walking barefoot
  • Wear shoes with good arch support
  • Wear shoes that allow for good circulation to the feet
  • Elevate feet if you experience swelling
  • Massage your feet
  • Get regular, light exercise, such as walking, to promote blood circulation to the feet

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

Read more about Pregnancy and Foot Health
Thursday, 17 September 2020 00:00

Causes of Cracked Heels

Cracked heels occur when the skin on the heels becomes thickened and dried out. Because the soles of the feet lack oil glands, the feet’s skin is often drier than the skin on the rest of the body. Due to this lack of moisture, the skin may lose its elasticity and become painful and unsightly. There are a variety of issues that can cause heels to dry out. Pressure on the feet from too much standing or weight gain can increase the risks of cracks. Footwear that offers little protection of the heel, such as flip flops, can also cause the skin in the heels to dry out. Conditions such as fungal infections, lack of nutrients in the skin and genetics are also risk factors for cracked heels. If you are suffering from cracked heels, it is important to consult with a podiatrist for proper treatment and relief methods.

If the skin on your feet starts to crack, you may want to see a podiatrist to find treatment. If you have any concerns, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

It is important to moisturize your cracked heels in order to prevent pain, bleeding, and infection. The reason cracked heels form is because the skin on the foot is too dry to support the immense pressure placed on them. When the foot expands, the dry skin on the foot begins to split.

Ways to Help Heal Them

  • Invest in a good foot cream
  • Try Using Petroleum Jelly
  • Ease up on Soaps
  • Drink Plenty of Water

Ways to Prevent Cracked Heels

  • Moisturize After Showering
  • Skip a Shower
  • Keep Shower Water Lukewarm
  • Don’t Scrub Your Feet

If you are unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels, seek guidance from a podiatrist. Your doctor will help you with any questions or information you may need. 

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

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Tuesday, 08 September 2020 00:00

Possible Reasons Gout Can Occur

The medical condition that is known as gout can cause severe pain and difficulty walking. It generally affects the joints in the big toe, and may cause swelling and redness. It can develop as a result of excess uric acid in the bloodstream, which can occur for various reasons. These can include genetic factors, or from eating foods that have high levels of purines. Elevated levels of purines can be found in specific foods such as red meat, shellfish, and drinks that are made with large amounts of sugar. To determine the severity of gout, fluid is removed from the affected joints and observed for uric acid crystals. It is strongly recommended that a podiatrist be consulted if you are afflicted with gout.

Gout is a foot condition that requires certain treatment and care. If you are seeking treatment, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a type of arthritis caused by a buildup of uric acid in the bloodstream. It often develops in the foot, especially the big toe area, although it can manifest in other parts of the body as well. Gout can make walking and standing very painful and is especially common in diabetics and the obese.

People typically get gout because of a poor diet. Genetic predisposition is also a factor. The children of parents who have had gout frequently have a chance of developing it themselves.

Gout can easily be identified by redness and inflammation of the big toe and the surrounding areas of the foot. Other symptoms include extreme fatigue, joint pain, and running high fevers. Sometimes corticosteroid drugs can be prescribed to treat gout, but the best way to combat this disease is to get more exercise and eat a better diet.

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

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout
Monday, 31 August 2020 00:00

Plantar Warts Grow Inward

A plantar wart is defined as a wart on the sole of the foot. It grows inward as a result of the pressure the feet endure on a daily basis, and can cause severe pain and discomfort. They appear to be flat, and many plantar warts have small, black specs in the center that are tiny blood vessels. Warts can be contagious, and are caused by a fungus that lives and thrives in warm and moist environments. These environments include public swimming pools, shower room floors, and surrounding areas. It is important to refrain from sharing shoes, socks, and towels, as this may limit the spread of plantar warts. There are effective treatment methods available, and it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can determine which one is best for you.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Todd A. Bell, DPM from Connecticut. Our doctor will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of HPV, or human papillomavirus, getting into open wounds on the feet. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain or those suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Lesions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, can help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. However, if you think you have developed plantar warts, speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

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

Read more about All About Plantar Warts
Sunday, 30 August 2020 00:00

Heel Pain Can Be Treated!

Do you suffer from heel pain when you get up in the morning? If so, you should seek the professional help of your podiatrist and have a proper diagnosis performed. Heel pain can be caused by several different foot-related conditions.

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