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Items filtered by date: September 2015

stretching2According to a study reported at the American Pain Society Annual Scientific Meeting chemotherapy induced neuropathy has been found to hurt more in the feet than in the hands making every day routine difficult. The study included 184 patients from the San Francisco Bay area completing taxane or platinum based chemotherapy where chemo-induced neuropathy was in their hands and feet. With the help of questionnaires such as the pain interference scale and brief pain inventory, chemotherapy induced neuropathy was found to cause treatment delay, decreased functioning of the feet, and poorer quality of life since the pain reduced everyday activities.

When dealing with systemic disease of the feet, is extremely important to check the affected areas routinely so that any additional problems are caught quickly. For professional help, see Dr. Gregory Birch and Dr. Andrew J. Birch of New York. Our doctors will ensure that your feet receive the care that they need.

Systemic Diseases of the Feet

Systemic diseases affect the whole body, and symptoms usually are displayed in the feet. This condition can make a patient’s ability to walk unbearable. Systemic diseases include gout, diabetes mellitus, neurological disorders, and arthritis.

Gout – is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Common symptoms include pain, inflammation, and redness at the metatarsal/phalangeal joint of the base big toe. Gout can be treated by NSAIDs to relieve pain and inflammation, and other drugs that lower the acid levels in the body.

Diabetes mellitus – is an increase in the level of blood sugar that the body cannot counteract with its own insulin. Failure to produce enough insulin is a factor in Diabetes.

Diabetes of the Feet

Diabetic Neuropathy – may lead to damaged nerves and affect the feet through numbness and loss of sensation.

Peripheral Vascular Disease – can restrict the blood flow to the feet, and often times lead to amputation of the feet.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our offices located in Staten Island and Brooklyn, NY. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

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childrens feet15While most people get pedicures to wind down and relax, pedicurists want some of their customers to know a few things they should and should not expect from the process. While pedicurists will take care of your feet by removing dead skin and calluses, somethings they just cannot take care of. For example, plantar warts, ingrown toenails, and fungal should not be taken care of at home or at a nail salon, they should be taken care of by a podiatrist. “A podiatrist is qualified to take care of the problem as quickly as and pain-free as possible,” says pedicurist Alexandra Calle.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you have any concerns with plantar warts on your feet contact Dr. Gregory Birch and Dr. Andrew Birch of New York. Our doctors will treat 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

  • Legions 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, will 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 offices located in Staten Island and Brooklyn, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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fungal toenail2When it comes to updating your athletic shoes for the new year or season, it is important to keep in mind that a proper fitting shoe is more important that the beauty of the shoe. Knowing your feet and understanding the gait and foot structure can change over time is important in deciding what type of shoe is best for your foot needs. Additionally knowing your size is also vital for proper fitting shoes. Shoe size can change even during the adult years and different brands are true to different sizes making it best to measure your feet to ensure proper fit. Some other tips for finding a shoe with the proper fit include shopping towards the end of the day when they foot has expanded, bringing your own socks to try on with the shoes, and any gaps in the toe box of the shoes should not be more than the width of your thumb.

Finding a proper fitting shoe is important in reducing injuries and preventing foot problems. For more information, contact Dr. Gregory Birch and Dr. Andrew Birch of New York. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Proper Shoe Fitting

A common concern when it comes to foot health, having properly fitted shoes can help prevent injuries to the foot. Out feet affect our posture and gait, which in turn affects the biomechanics and overall bodily structure. With 33 joints, 26 bones, and over 100 ligaments, the potential for serious injury is much greater than one realizes. Although the feet cease growth in adulthood, they still change shape as they mature. Here are some factors to consider when it comes to investing in properly fitting shoes:

  • Be sure the shoes fit correctly right away
  • Ensure the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest portion of the shoes
  • Even though they may look fashionable, improperly fitting shoes can either create adverse conditions or exacerbate existing ones you may already have
  • Walk along a carpeted surface to ensure the shoes comfortably fit during normal activity

Keeping in mind how shoes fit the biomechanics of your body, keeping properly fit shoes is vitally important. Fortunately, it is not difficult to acquire footwear that fits correctly. Be sure to wear shoes that support the overall structure of your body. Do your feet a favor and invest in several pairs of well-fitted shoes today.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Staten Island and Brooklyn, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technologies for your foot and ankle needs.

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swimming3This past July the Minneapolis metro area hosted the 2015 National Senior Games where nearly 12,000 seniors ages 50 and older completed in high activity events such as basketball, swimming, and volleyball. Despite many of these participants having previously suffered from foot and ankle injuries, making them even more susceptible to injury at this stage, the event was still a success. Health professionals do recommend, however, that seniors take extra precautions when participating in high impact activities such as tennis, golf, or running since these activities can have negative influences on the lower extremities.

Proper foot care is something many older adults forget to consider. For more information, consult with Dr. Gregory Birch and Dr. Andrew J. Birch from New York. Our doctors will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

The Elderly and their Feet

As we age we start to notice many changes in our body, but the elder population may not notice them right away. Medical conditions may prevent the elderly to take notice of their foot health right away. Poor vision is a lead contributor to not taking action for the elderly.

Common Conditions

Neuropathy – can reduce feeling in the feet, and can hide many life threating medical conditions.

Reduced flexibility – prevents the ability of proper toenail trimming, and foot cleaning. If left untreated, it may lead to further medical issues.

Foot sores – amongst the older population can be serious before they are discovered. Some of the problematic conditions they may face are:

Gouging toenails affecting nearby toe

Shoes that don’t fit properly

Pressure sores

Loss of circulation in legs & feet

Edema & swelling of feet and ankles

Susceptible Infections

Diabetes and poor circulation can cause general loss of sensitivity over the years, turning a simple cut into a serious issue.

If you have any questions please contact our offices located in Staten Island and Brooklyn, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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