Signs and Causes of Poor Circulation

Poor circulation can cause various signs and symptoms that suggest a problem with blood flow. Some of the most common symptoms include cold or numb feet and toes, which can make the feel unusually cold to the touch. You might also experience tingling or a “pins and needles” sensation. Additional symptoms of poor circulation include swelling in the lower legs and feet, as well as changes in skin color, such as turning pale or blue. Poor circulation can contribute to cramping or pain in your legs and feet, especially after physical activity. One common cause of poor circulation is atherosclerosis, where fatty deposits build up in your arteries, narrowing them and restricting blood flow. Symptoms may include chest pain, shortness of breath, and fatigue, usually while participating in physical activity. Regular check-ups and a healthy lifestyle can help manage and prevent atherosclerosis. If you notice any of these symptoms of poor circulation in the feet, it's suggested that you consult with a podiatrist to address the issue. 

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact one of our podiatrists of Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

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 offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Gout Pain Can Be Managed

Gout is a painful, inflammatory form of arthritis. Those affected will typically feel an intense stiffness in the joints of their feet, particularly in the big toe. Schedule a visit to learn about how gout can be managed and treated.

Cracked Heels and How to Prevent Them

Cracked heels, also known as heel fissures, are characterized by dry, thickened skin on the heels that splits or cracks. This condition often occurs due to factors such as dry weather, excessive standing or walking, improper footwear, or lack of proper foot care. When the skin becomes dry and loses its elasticity, it can crack under pressure, leading to painful fissures that may bleed or become infected, if left untreated. Prevention of cracked heels involves regular moisturizing to keep the skin hydrated and supple. Use a thick, emollient foot cream or lotion containing ingredients like urea or glycerin to help soften and moisturize dry skin. Exfoliating the heels regularly with a pumice stone or foot file can help remove dead skin cells and prevent the buildup of calluses. Additionally, wearing properly fitting shoes with adequate support and cushioning can reduce pressure on the heels and minimize the risk of developing cracked heels. If you have developed cracked heels that persist or become infected, it is strongly suggested that you visit a podiatrist for treatment.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists from Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors 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 offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Pain on Top of Your Foot

Feeling a sharp pain on the top of your foot during each step can be disconcerting, especially for runners. Unlike more recognizable running injuries, such as plantar fasciitis or shin splints, top-of-foot pain poses a unique challenge for diagnosis. Types of pain on the top of the foot among runners include tendonitis, metatarsal stress fractures, or neuromas. Tendonitis may cause pain near the instep and big toe, and is often accompanied by shin splints. Metatarsal stress fractures, often triggered by sudden increases in training intensity, result in swelling and discomfort over the metatarsal bones. The second and third metatarsals of the foot, which are thinner, and often longer than the first metatarsal, are most prone to stress fractures. This is the area of greatest impact on your foot when you push off to run. Wearing tight footwear can lead to issues like vamp disease or neuromas, resulting in pain or burning sensations that may be relieved by adjusting shoe fit. Regardless of the suspected injury, if the pain persists despite rest, it is suggested that runners consult a podiatrist promptly for an accurate diagnosis and suggested treatment options. 

All runners should take extra precaution when trying to avoid injury. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact one of our podiatrists of Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

There are a lot of mistakes a runner can make prior to a workout that can induce injury. A lot of athletes tend to overstretch before running, instead of saving those workouts for a post-run routine. Deep lunges and hand-to-toe hamstring pulls should be performed after a workout instead of during a warmup. Another common mistake is jumping into an intense routine before your body is physically prepared for it. You should try to ease your way into long-distance running instead of forcing yourself to rush into it.

More Tips for Preventing Injury

  • Incorporate Strength Training into Workouts - This will help improve the body’s overall athleticism
  • Improve and Maintain Your Flexibility – Stretching everyday will help improve overall performance
  • “Warm Up” Before Running and “Cool Down” Afterward – A warm up of 5-10 minutes helps get rid of lactic acid in the muscles and prevents delayed muscle soreness
  • Cross-Training is Crucial
  • Wear Proper Running Shoes
  • Have a Formal Gait Analysis – Poor biomechanics can easily cause injury

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Ankle Injuries Common While Playing Tennis

Ankle injuries while playing tennis are more than just a minor setback, they can significantly impact a player's performance and overall well-being. Understanding some essential facts about these injuries can help players better prevent and manage them. Firstly, ankle sprains are the most common type of injury in tennis, often occurring due to sudden shifts in direction or awkward landings. These sprains can range from mild to severe, affecting ligaments and stability. Moreover, tennis players are particularly prone to lateral ankle sprains, where the foot rolls inward, stressing the outer ligaments. Additionally, repetitive stress on the ankle joint from the quick, lateral movements required in tennis can lead to overuse injuries like tendonitis. Proper warm-up routines, adequate footwear, and strengthening exercises targeting ankle stability can all play pivotal roles in reducing the risk of ankle injuries and ensuring a more enjoyable and injury-free tennis experience. If you have endured an ankle injury while playing tennis, it is suggested that you visit a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition, and offer you prevention strategies.

Sports related foot and ankle injuries require proper treatment before players can go back to their regular routines. For more information, contact one of our podiatrists of Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Sports Related Foot and Ankle Injuries

Foot and ankle injuries are a common occurrence when it comes to athletes of any sport. While many athletes dismiss the initial aches and pains, the truth is that ignoring potential foot and ankle injuries can lead to serious problems. As athletes continue to place pressure and strain the area further, a mild injury can turn into something as serious as a rupture and may lead to a permanent disability. There are many factors that contribute to sports related foot and ankle injuries, which include failure to warm up properly, not providing support or wearing bad footwear. Common injuries and conditions athletes face, including:

  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Plantar Fasciosis
  • Achilles Tendinitis
  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
  • Ankle Sprains

Sports related injuries are commonly treated using the RICE method. This includes rest, applying ice to the injured area, compression and elevating the ankle. More serious sprains and injuries may require surgery, which could include arthroscopic and reconstructive surgery. Rehabilitation and therapy may also be required in order to get any recovering athlete to become fully functional again. Any unusual aches and pains an athlete sustains must be evaluated by a licensed, reputable medical professional.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Three Types of Corns on the Feet

Corns are identified as patches of thickened skin and are a common foot problem that can cause discomfort and pain if left untreated. Understanding different types of corns can help in effectively managing and preventing them. Hard corns, the most prevalent type, typically develop on the tops and sides of toes or weight-bearing areas of the foot. These corns are compact and dense, often caused by friction or pressure from wearing ill-fitting shoes or repetitive motion. Conversely, soft corns tend to form between toes where sweat and moisture accumulate. These corns are softer in texture and can be more painful due to increased moisture levels. Finally, seed corns are tiny, discrete corns that often appear on the bottom of the foot. They are generally painless but can cause discomfort when walking. If you have a corn on your foot, it is suggested that you consult a podiatrist who can identify which type it is, and offer you correct treatment solutions.

Corns can make walking very painful and should be treated immediately. If you have questions regarding your feet and ankles, contact one of our podiatrists of Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Corns: What Are They? And How Do You Get Rid of Them?
Corns are thickened areas on the skin that can become painful. They are caused by excessive pressure and friction on the skin. Corns press into the deeper layers of the skin and are usually round in shape.

Ways to Prevent Corns
There are many ways to get rid of painful corns such as:

  • Wearing properly fitting shoes that have been measured by a professional
  • Wearing shoes that are not sharply pointed or have high heels
  • Wearing only shoes that offer support

Treating Corns

Although most corns slowly disappear when the friction or pressure stops, this isn’t always the case. Consult with your podiatrist to determine the best treatment option for your case of corns.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Corns

Custom Foot and Ankle Orthotics in Diabetic Foot Care Management

Custom-made foot and ankle orthotics play a vital role in diabetic foot care by addressing the unique challenges posed by this condition. Diabetes can lead to peripheral neuropathy and impaired circulation, leaving the feet vulnerable to injuries and ulcers. Left untreated, these complications can escalate, potentially resulting in severe infections, tissue damage, and possibly amputation. Orthotics designed specifically for diabetic patients offer several benefits. They help redistribute pressure away from areas prone to ulceration, thereby reducing the risk of wounds. Additionally, orthotics can improve stability and alignment, which is helpful for preventing falls and injuries. By providing cushioning and support, they also alleviate discomfort and pain associated with diabetic neuropathy. If you have diabetic foot issues, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist to discuss whether orthotics can help you.

If you are having discomfort in your feet and would like to try orthotics, contact one of our podiatrists from Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Are Orthotics?

Orthotics are inserts you can place into your shoes to help with a variety of foot problems such as flat feet or foot pain. Orthotics provide relief and comfort for minor foot and heel pain but can’t correct serious biomechanical problems in your feet.

Over-the-Counter Inserts

Orthotics come in a wide variety of over-the-counter inserts that are used to treat foot pain, heel pain, and minor problems. For example, arch supports can be inserted into your shoes to help correct overarched or flat feet, while gel insoles are often used because they provide comfort and relief from foot and heel pain by alleviating pressure.

Prescription Orthotics

If over-the-counter inserts don’t work for you or if you have a more severe foot concern, it is possible to have your podiatrist prescribe custom orthotics. These high-quality inserts are designed to treat problems such as abnormal motion, plantar fasciitis, and severe forms of heel pain. They can even be used to help patients suffering from diabetes by treating foot ulcers and painful calluses and are usually molded to your feet individually, which allows them to provide full support and comfort.

If you are experiencing minor to severe foot or heel pain, it’s recommended to speak with your podiatrist about the possibilities of using orthotics. A podiatrist can determine which type of orthotic is right for you and allow you to take the first steps towards being pain-free.

If you have any questions please contact our offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Arthritis Can Cause Pain in the Feet and Ankles

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

There Is Relief for Foot Pain

Foot pain can severely impact the quality of life and increase the risk of falls, affecting activities and mobility. Achy heels, bunions, calluses, and burning sensations can cause discomfort and lead to complications if left untreated. Additionally, numbness and tingling may indicate nerve issues that require prompt attention. Proper toenail care is essential to prevent ingrown nails and infections. Consulting a podiatrist can help with the effective management of foot pain. Podiatrists offer a range of solutions, from custom orthotics to specialized treatments tailored to specific conditions. By addressing the root cause of foot pain, podiatrists can alleviate discomfort, improve mobility, and reduce the risk of complications, ultimately enhancing the overall quality of life. If you are suffering from foot pain, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with one of our podiatrists from Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors 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 offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Ledderhose’s Disease

Ledderhose's disease, more commonly known as plantar fibromatosis, was named after George Ledderhose who first described it in 1894. It is a rare condition characterized by the growth of fibrous tissue in the plantar fascia, the ligament connecting the heel to the toes. This leads to the formation of nodules or lumps on the bottom of the foot, causing pain and stiffness. While the exact cause is unknown, factors such as genetics, trauma, or certain medical conditions may contribute to its development. Ledderhose's disease predominantly affects middle-aged and older adults, with men being more commonly affected than women. Treatment options for Ledderhose's disease range from conservative measures like custom-made orthotics to more invasive interventions, such as steroid injections or surgery to remove the nodules. Outcomes vary, and recurrence is possible. If you have lumps on the soles of your feet, it is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment.

A plantar fibroma may disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists of Associates in Podiatry. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Plantar Fibroma

A plantar fibroma is a fibrous knot in the arch of the foot. It is embedded in the plantar fascia which is a band of tissue that extends from the heel to the toes along the bottom of the foot. There can be multiple plantar fibromas in the feet at the same time. There are no known causes for this condition. If you have a plantar fibroma, there will be a bump in the arch of your foot that cannot be missed. Any associated pain is most often due to a shoe rubbing against the nodule. Non-surgical options, such as steroid injections, physical therapy, and orthotics should be tried first. Surgery is a last resort and is the only thing that will remove a plantar fibroma entirely. Consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and to determine the treatment regimen that is right for you.

What Causes a Plantar Fibroma?

While there are no specific causes identified, a plantar fibroma can possibly come from genetic predisposition or the formation of scar tissue that forms from healing the tears in the plantar fascia.

What Are the Symptoms of a Plantar Fibroma?

There will be a noticeable lump in the arch of the foot that may or may not cause pain. If pain is felt, it is typically because a shoe is rubbing up against the lump or when walking or standing barefoot.

Treatment and Prevention

A plantar fibroma will not disappear without treatment, but it can get smaller and be a non-issue. If pain persists, a podiatrist examines the foot and when the arch of the foot is pressed, pain can be felt down to the toes. An MRI or biopsy might be performed to help diagnose or evaluate the plantar fibroma. The following non-surgical options are generally enough to reduce the size and pain of these nodules:

  • Steroid injections
  • Orthotics
  • Physical therapy to help apply anti-inflammatory creams on the bump 

Surgery is considered if the mass increases in size and the patient continues to feel pain after non-surgical methods are tried.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Pittsburgh-South Hills, and Pittsburgh-Bellevue, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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