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Monday, 24 February 2020 00:00

The tarsal tunnel is located on the inside of the ankle. There are nerves that are in this portion of the foot that provide movement and feeling. If one of these nerves becomes compressed and inflamed, a condition that is known as tarsal tunnel syndrome may develop. It can happen for several reasons, including a direct injury to the ankle, excessive swelling in the feet, or from existing medical conditions such as arthritis. Some of the symptoms that are typically associated with this ailment can include a lack of feeling in the sole of the foot, and there may be burning or tingling sensations in the foot, ankle, or calf. Patients who stand for long periods of time throughout the day, have flat feet, diabetes, or arthritis, may have an increased risk of developing tarsal tunnel syndrome. If you feel pain on the side of your ankle or on the bottom of your foot, it is strongly suggested that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Dr. Wilburn Thomas of Southeast Foot Care. 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 San Antonio, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 17 February 2020 00:00

Cracked heels are generally a common condition among those who typically wear open footwear. Besides having a displeasing appearance, cracked heels can also be very uncomfortable and painful for patients who are afflicted with this ailment. Common causes that lead to the development of cracked heels may include standing for the majority of the day, increased pressure on the heels due to obesity, and certain skin conditions such as eczema or athlete’s foot. Along with the pain they may cause, cracked heels that are more severe can also lead to bleeding. It is said one way to help begin the process of healing cracked heels is by drinking plenty of water and remaining hydrated. Applying moisturizers, petroleum jelly, healing cream, and moisturizing socks may also help to reduce the dryness in your heels. Patients have also found soaking their feet, followed by using a pumice stone as an exfoliant, is helpful in treating cracked heels. For more advice on how to best treat cracked heels, please consult with a podiatrist for treatment plans and professional care.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Wilburn Thomas from Southeast Foot Care. 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 San Antonio, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Monday, 10 February 2020 00:00

The connective tissue at the bottom of your foot that joins the heel bone to the toes and aids in arch support is referred to as the plantar fascia. If this tissue becomes strained, it may experience small tearing which can cause heel pain, as well as make it difficult to walk or stand. The plantar fascia is also likely to become inflamed when overstretched. This condition is known as plantar fasciitis. To help ease the discomfort and pain of this condition, it is suggested that you get plenty of rest off your feet, and reduce activity level throughout your day. Icing the affected area may also help in reducing inflammation and swelling. Try freezing a water bottle, and once frozen, roll the bottle under your foot to ice the entire plantar fascia. To help make the plantar fascia more flexible, it’s suggested to perform light calf exercises. If you are experiencing intense heel pain, and the affected area is warm, red, or causing a fever, it is recommended that you consult with a podiatrist as soon as possible for the best treatment options.

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 Dr. Wilburn Thomas from Southeast Foot Care. Our doctor 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 affect 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 office located in San Antonio, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Monday, 03 February 2020 00:00

Patients who have an Achilles tendon injury typically feel pain in the calf. The Achilles tendon connects the heel to the calf muscles, and may become damaged or torn while participating in certain sporting activities. It enables the foot to point and flex, which is necessary in order to walk, run, and jump. The Achilles tendon may tear or become ruptured as a result of repetitive stress on the feet and ankles. It can happen gradually from consistent running, or happen suddenly from an increase in exercise intensity. Some of the symptoms that are typically associated with this condition can include swelling surrounding the heel, severe pain in the back of the leg, and difficulty walking. If you feel you have endured an Achilles tendon injury, it is advised that you are under the care of a podiatrist.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Wilburn Thomas of Southeast Foot Care. 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 our office located in San Antonio, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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