Celebrities with Foot Problems: Stop and Drop Those Awful Habits Now!

Celebrities with Foot ProblemsWhat do Sarah Jessica Parker, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone, Kim Kardashian, Christina Hendricks, Meg Ryan and Kate Moss have in common? They’re all celebrities with foot problems and they have a lot of company. Over the years, a large number of female celebs have either been called out or spoken out about the damage footwear has done to their well manicured feet.

Some of the lovely ladies have caused their feet to develop everything from bunions, calluses, hammertoes and plantar fasciitis to ankle sprains and fractures all in the name of high fashion headlines. There have even been incidents of footwear allegedly causing sacroiliac joint pain, back problems and knee osteoarthritis.

So what can non-celebrities learn from their glamorous idols? For one, wearing shoes that are too tight and don’t provide enough support are bound to create problems in the long-term.

As Sarah Jessica Parker pointed out in a Spring 2013 Weekly US article, her years of poor shoe choices have left her feet in pretty bad shape. Does anyone really want to suffer the same fate? We don’t think so. With that said, it is vital to make fashion choices with a healthy dose of common sense and an eye towards the future. In addition, getting into the habit of taking care of one’s feet at an early age is also advised.

Like many parts of our bodies, the feet continue to grow well into puberty and often beyond. So the shoes we wear during those critical growth periods can heavily influence what our feet eventually look like. In addition, our feet can change size and shape once we’ve reached adulthood. The changes that happen to our feet in adulthood are generally caused by age, hormone and weight fluctuations.

They tend to make our feet get wider, longer and flatter. However, they can be caused by our footwear choices too, much like what happens when we wear the wrong shoes during our growth spurts. To learn more about celebrities with foot problems and how you can avoid their fate, please contact us.


Image courtesy of Patrisyu/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Podiatrists Warn, Don’t Let Winter Activities Cause Ankle Sprains and More

Broken Ankle & Foot InjuriesAlthough ankle sprains can happen anytime, the tail end of the year tends to send more people rushing to the podiatrist than any other. They aren’t the only injuries that may occur either. It’s also not uncommon for podiatrists to see a rise in cases of FHL tenosynovitis, plantar fascittis, hallux rigidus, metatarsalgia, athlete’s feet and frost bite. Most podiatry offices attribute those increases to poorly maintained surfaces, winter sports, badly chosen footwear, snow blowing and snow shoveling activities. They can all really wreak havoc on the ankle joint and the foot in general. With that said, local podiatrists are urging everyone to remember the following:

Do ditch the smooth-soled dress shoes, ultra thin pantyhose and high heel boots. Instead, opt for insulated, waterproof footwear that will provide sufficient traction, warmth and support for the weather at hand. If you’re prone to athlete’s feet, consider choosing a pair that features removable, washable inserts. And if you just have to keep your high heels and dress shoes around, only wear them inside where it’s dry.

Don’t go walking around after dark in poorly lit areas either. Doing so will only increase your risk of slipping on ice and snow. For those early mornings and nights when you need to pass through such areas, keep a small, LED flashlight or reusable, emergency glow stick on your person. They may help provide enough light to detect potential sidewalk, curbside or parking lot hazards.

Do think about wearing insulated socks and checking your feet regularly for signs of frost nip or frost bite. If your toes and feet look pale and feel somewhat numb, get off of them straightaway. Then take the necessary first aid measures to bring them back to normal. Should blood filled blisters, black scabs, extensive numbness and severe discoloration be present, head to the nearest Farmington doctor’s office for emergency assistance.

Ankle Sprain Study Released: Warning Issued to Women Who Love High-Heels

Woman with gout painIn May 2015, The Journal of Foot & Ankle Surgery® published a study that confirmed what podiatrists have known for decades. High-heel shoes may potentially cause wearers to experience ankle sprains as well as a cavalcade of other injuries. The study looked at foot and ankle injuries over a span of 10 years, starting with 2002. But one doesn’t have to go back that far to see what kind of damage wearing high-heels can do to the ankle.

In April 2015, high-heel wearing Britney Spears had a very public accident on stage. The video of her injury made its rounds on social media and in the mainstream media. So, many people got to see the unfortunate incident go down. In the end, she had to alter her tour schedule to accommodate what the media reports widely claimed was an ankle sprain.

When a woman sprains her ankle, doctors will assign the injury a grade. The grades run from one to three with three being the most severe. It often involves mid-section ruptures or separation of the ligament from the bone. Once the ligament ruptures or separates from the bone, the person must be immobilized and kept that way for an extended period of time.

If the ankle injury does not look like it will heal properly, scheduling surgical reconstruction or arthroscopy may be the next logical step. Oftentimes, when combined with physical therapy, it will completely reverse the damage. However, in some segments of the population full restoration of ankle movement may not be possible (e.g. elderly). The ultimate outcome of grade three ankle sprains all hinges on numerous factors. A podiatrist will typically review a patient’s case file prior to recommending surgery just in case.

Lower grade ankle sprains are treated differently, although rest and immobilization may be a part of the person’s care plan. Healing time is generally shorter and range-of-motion exercises are typically a central part of the plan. Anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed for painful ankle injuries as well. If you or a loved one experiences a high-heel related ankle sprain, please seek professional podiatry care right away.


Image courtesy of Marin/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Foot Care For Wearing Heels

Woman with gout painFor many women, shunning high heels and sticking to comfortable, podiatrist-approved footwear is not an option. Heels have become part of what is considered a polished and finished look.

If you’re attending an event, networking, interviewing for a job, or getting married, heels, event modestly high ones, are not only the norm, they are expected. It makes appropriate foot care challenging, but not impossible.

If you are the type who has to wear heels more than two days out of the week, below are a few tips to wear your shoes safely, and for the most part, comfortably.

Know Your Foot

Knowing the size and shape of your foot is very important. Some people go their entire lives wearing shoes in the same size without considering that their feet may have grown as they’ve aged (hint: they do). Some people even have different-sized feet.

Whether you have high arches, uneven or flat feet, knowing the way your foot is shaped is very important. It will help you identify the right shoes for your feet, and what type of heels to go for. Visit a podiatrist to know your foot shape, and what kind of shoes are recommended for your feet.

Know Your Heel

The amount of pressure heels will add to your foot is completely dependent on how the heel is made. A heel with less surface area like a stiletto with a thin sole will be more uncomfortable than a thicker heel with a platform sole.

If you can, go for the heel that gives you more surface area, including area that covers the top of your foot, as it will help keep you from wobbling on your feet. If you can’t, then:

Know Your Limits

Take breaks, stretch your ankles and feet. Numbness is a surefire cue that your feet need a break. Don’t grin and break through the pain. Instead, bring a cute pair of flats along with you, and the moment the coast is clear, put them on and enjoy being on your feet.


Image courtesy of Marin/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Athletes with Foot Problems Make News Again in May 2015

Professional Athletes’ Broken Ankles Capture Headlines in Early 2015In late May 2015, several athletes with foot problems made the national news. Perhaps you’ve heard about the one involving basketball star, Kyle Korver? During an Eastern Conference final against the Cleveland Cavaliers, he unfortunately sprained his right ankle. The 34-year-old pro is expected to spend some time off of the courts recovering. Of course that’s the kind of news that will likely dampen the mood of even the most optimistic Atlanta Hawks fans.

Over the years, much has been written about foot problems in sports and ankle sprains in particular. Studies have been conducted on the topic for decades too. One of the more recent ones was published in a January 2010 issue of The Journal of Family Practice. Although dated, it is in lock step with previous studies and makes a strong argument for the use of preventive medicine.

Podiatrists Recommend Being Proactive Regardless of Career Status

Preventive medicine has obviously come a long way since 2010. As such, athletes with foot problems have a variety of treatment options at their disposal. We’ve listed some, but not all of the treatment options below:

  • Temporary Cessation of Activity or Early Retirement
  • Use of Standard or High-Tech Orthotics
  • Proprioceptive Therapy or Training
  • Use of Special Athletic Shoes (Varies by Sport)
  • Physical Therapy
  • Use of Sports Tape and Specialty Braces
  • ROM and Strength Training Exercises

Of course the list of suggested treatments for athletes with foot problems will vary based on the types of injuries involved. Ankle sprains tend to be among the most common and insidious for athletes because of the potential for long-term effects. For example, athletes that sustain grade three ankle sprains are very likely to experience ligament weakness for extended periods of time. As such, their careers, not to mention their health, may take unexpected hits. To learn more about athletic related ankle injuries, please consult with a podiatrist.

What’s Causing Your Ankle Pain? Is It a Sprain, a Fracture– or Something Else?

Treatment for Ankle SprainsAt its mildest, ankle pain is uncomfortable. In its most severe cases, ankle pain can be debilitating, rendering the sufferer unable to walk. Most often, ankle pain is described as a dull, persistent ache that occurs when the ankles bear weight or when they are in motion. Ankle pain can occur in anyone, regardless of age or gender. However, it’s most common in athletes and men under the age of 24. In women, ankle pain is more prevalent over the age of 30.

What causes ankle pain?

Often, ankle pain occurs after a fall or sports injury. However, there are numerous other causes of ankle pain. A sprain is one of the most common causes. An ankle sprain results from injury to the ligaments that connect the ankle bones. If one of the bones in the ankle is fractured, ankle pain is often severe.

Sprains and fractures due to injury aren’t the only causes of ankle pain. Less common causes include gout, osteoarthritis, and even infection. In runners, a frequent cause of ankle pain is Achilles tendonitis. This occurs when the calf muscles at the back of the leg are overworked.

Diagnosing ankle pain

To determine the cause of your ankle pain, your podiatrist will begin by asking you questions: how long have you been in pain? What were you doing when the pain began? Then, your podiatrist will examine your ankle. Often, an X-ray is ordered to determine if there is a sprain or fracture. Sometimes, fluid is taken from the ankle joint to check for infection.

Treating ankle pain

The treatment plan for ankle pain depends on the underlying cause. Many cases of ankle pain are treated with rest and immobilization. You might be required to use crutches for several weeks. Your podiatrist might also suggest elevating your ankle when you’re at rest. Additionally, your podiatrist might also direct you to apply ice to your ankle a few times each day in an effort to reduce swelling. Compression bandages can also be used to reduce swelling. Anti-inflammatory medications might also be recommended to help with pain and swelling.

If you’re suffering from ankle pain that is not resolving, please contact us today to learn more.

Professional Athletes’ Broken Ankles Capture Headlines in Early 2015

Professional Athletes’ Broken Ankles Capture Headlines in Early 2015In early 2015, a number of professional athletes were temporarily put out of commission thanks to broken ankles. Among them were University of Kentucky’s Janee Thompson and Los Angeles Kings’ Tanner Pearson.

Thompson reportedly broke her tibia and Pearson, as it later turned out, actually broke his fibula. Both are two of the three bones that make up the top ankle joint. The other is the talus. It should also be mentioned that there is another joint in the foot that connects the ankle bone to the heel bone. It’s called the subtalar joint but apparently neither athlete broke that one this time around.

When the tibia, fibula or talus breaks, it can be quite traumatic for athletes and everyday Joes alike. In most cases, swelling and severe pain are immediately present and the injured person can no longer stand up without assistance. As time goes on, bruising is also likely to appear on and around the broken bones. After the injury, it is extremely important that the accident victim’s broken ankle is examined and repaired. Otherwise, the deformities could become permanent, thereby rendering the person disabled.

Furthermore, if the person who sustains the broken ankle hasn’t finished growing yet (e.g. child), he or she will need to be closely monitored for bone or joint weakness and deformities long after the initial injury has been treated. The extended monitoring period is crucial to ensure that the broken ankle doesn’t interfere with the leg and foot bones’ normal growth as time goes on. In most instances, the extended period will last at least two years, maybe more depending on the individual’s normal growth rate and unique circumstances.

The severity of the injury will dictate which treatment methods are used. Options often include, but are not limited to emergency surgery, casting and post-surgery rehabilitation. Depending on the situation, full recovery from broken ankles may take two months or more. As such, the two athletes that we mentioned earlier are likely to be off of their respective courts for at least part or all of a full season. To speak with a St. Louis podiatrist about broken ankles and best practices to ensure the bones heal properly, please click here.

Broken Ankle & Foot Injuries May Warrant Testing for Compartment Syndrome

Broken Ankle & Foot InjuriesAs we all know, there are many different foot and ankle injuries that may befall an individual. However, some of the most life altering ones are crushing injuries. They, by their very nature, have the ability to cause widespread and sometimes irreversible damage to the foot and ankle. That’s why many Farmington podiatrists believe in examining patients with broken ankles and crushed feet for signs and symptoms typically associated with compartment syndrome.

Compartment syndrome is primarily associated with crushing injuries that involve osseofascial compartments. Osseofascial compartments are found in a human’s limbs. They are actually closed segments within the limbs that are defined by fascia and bone. The foot alone has at least six such areas. They are known as the calcaneal, lateral, interosseous, superficial, adductor and medial compartments. The ankle is also affected by the four compartments that exist in the lower leg. They are known as superficial posterior, anterior, lateral and deep posterior compartments.

Within the defined borders mentioned above are muscles, soft tissue, tendons, blood vessels and nerves. As such, the areas have their own interstitial pressure level, which may be altered by crushing injuries and certain diseases. Once that pressure level is altered, it may disrupt the normal flow of blood. That, in turn, may cause tissue death, nerve damage, skin tightness and the formation of foot and ankle ulcers.

To determine whether or not a person has compartment syndrome, podiatrists may order an interstitial pressure test or CT arthrography and conduct a physical exam. If the interstitial pressure in the broken ankle or foot needs to be adjusted, a podiatrist may recommend that the patient undergo a fasciotomy.

It is a complicated, surgical procedure designed to immediately reduce the pressure in the affected area or areas. Afterward, the patient must typically restrict his or her movements for a minimum of five days and then potentially undergo a second surgical procedure to permanently close the open incisions (e.g. skin grafts). Once the second surgery has been completed, the patient may be faced with additional downtime.

In other instances, podiatrists may suggest that the patients with broken ankles try bed rest, foot elevation, anti-inflammatory medications, pneumatic intermittent impulse compression devices and splinting instead. It really all hinges upon how severe the change in pressure is and how long it has been left unchecked. To learn more about compartment syndrome and the treatments involved, please contact your local podiatry office.

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How to Treat Ankle Sprains

Treatment for Ankle SprainsGetting ankle sprains due to an accident can be painful and can result in mobility issues for a significant period of time. While the main recommendation when suffering with ankle sprain is to see your Missouri podiatrist , WebMD has some ideas using what it calls the PRINCE approach….here is a summary:

  • You should Protect the damaged ankle using some kind of brace with a built-in air cushion along with a compression wrap such as an elastic bandage 24 to 36 hours after the accident.
  • You should Rest as much as possible, not putting a lot of pressure on the ankle, using crutches when walking.
  • Applying Ice for the first 48 to 72 hours after the accident helps to reduce swelling. Do this 10 or so minutes every one to two hours.
  • Addressing the inflammation that results from an ankle sprain is also crucial. NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen (such as Advil or Motrin) and naproxen (such as Naprosyn) are good anti-inflammatory. Tylenol can work as well.
  • Compression is important to help bring down the swelling of an ankle sprain. Using an elastic wrap should help, but one should take care not to wrap the ankle too tightly. Signs that the bandage is too tight include numbness, tingling, increased pain, coolness, and/or swelling in the area below the bandage. Most compression wraps come with instructions on how to apply them.
  • Finally, you should keep the ankle Elevated as much as possible when you are seated or laying down. The ankle should be above the level of the heart two to three hours a day to help cut down on swelling and bruising.

Home remedies can be successful when treating ankle sprains, but seeking professional treatment from your Missouri foot doctor is always recommended. Call us today to schedule.

Broken Ankles Can Be Successfully Treated By Podiatrists

Treatment for Ankle InjuriesBroken ankles are one of the most common, worrisome injuries that can occur among active individuals. Broken ankle injuries typically occur when an individual falls, trips or ends up in some form of accident (i.e. bike crash). Most of the damage is generally caused by the initial impact or moving the ankle in an awkward way. On a positive note, a Missouri podiatrist visit may help resolve ankle fractures and breaks.

Upon arriving to the office, your podiatrist will ask for a recap of what happened and conduct a visual examination of the ankle. He or she will be looking for areas of inflammation, pain, tenderness, bruising, weakness and deformity. Besides the visual exam, your Missouri foot doctor may also order a stress test, MRI, X-ray or CT scan to help determine the severity of the break.

Afterward, he or she will recommend either a series of surgical or non-surgical treatments that will treat the damaged areas. Both have notable downtime periods attached. For example, posterior, lateral and medial malleolus (bony bulge on either side of the ankle) injuries may be treated non-surgically and generally take up to 10 weeks to heal completely. Oftentimes, the list of non-surgical measures used will include the following:

  • Pain medications (OTC or prescription)
  • Compression bandages or splints
  • Cold compresses or cold therapy
  • Removable braces or boots
  • Range of motion exercises
  • Orthopedic footwear
  • Rest and elevation
  • Ankle or leg casts

Bi- and tri-malleolar fractures, on the other hand, usually require surgical intervention. If ankle surgery is needed, the podiatrist may either perform it alone or with the assistance of an orthopedic surgeon. In some instances, the surgical procedure involves the insertion of permanent hardware. The list of hardware frequently used to repair broken ankles tends to include pins, wires, plates and screws. Depending on the individual, the post-surgery recovery period could last 12 weeks or more. During that period, return visits to your Missouri foot clinic are needed to monitor the healing process and make any adjustments to the care plan as needed.