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diabetic foot care3“If you want to know the state of your health, try looking down.” Poor circulation in a person’s feet can be caused by a variety of things, and it is vitally important not to ignore any hint that this may be happening to you. Symptoms to look out for include cold feet, numbness, pain, or swelling.  Diabetes can lead to poor circulation in the extremities and if left untreated, can wreak havoc on your feet. But there are many other reasons for lack of blood flow, including neurological issues, Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), and smoking, among others. Causes of these symptoms can become serious so it is imperative get to a podiatrist immediately to find out what is going on.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor 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 doctor as they will help try and fit a regime that suits you. A doctor will also prescribe you medication which will help for PAD.  

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about poor circulation in the feet

Monday, 26 December 2016 21:48

Winter Coming, Cracked Heels Abound

corns2As winter approaches we all know how important it is to make sure to keep our skin from getting too dry.  Just as we use balms and moisturizers for our face and hands, there are many ways to protect against dry and cracked feet and heels.  Glycerin lotions are some of the best remedies for combatting dryness.  Hydrogenated oils are also very effective moisturizers, and can be used not only on your feet, but your ankles and legs too.  In addition, fruits like banana and pineapple have plentiful amounts of helpful enzymes to ensure smooth and crack-free feet and ankles.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.


Cracked Heels

Cracked heels are unappealing, and make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Not only may they look bad, but they 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 so it can stay on longer.

Moisturizers – applying it both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – these remove dead skin, and then you can massage cream onto your foot. This way the cream will be absorbed. The skin needs to be exfoliated; therefore the outer layer dead skin needs removal.

Change in Diet

Eating healthy, with a well-balanced diet, will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to what kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements will also help with skin tissue.

Most importantly seek a health professional for foot care if something is wrong or doesn’t seem to be working. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about cracked heels.

Monday, 19 December 2016 17:52

Causes of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

plantar fasciitis6Tarsal tunnel syndrome can occur as a result of compression of the tarsal tunnel, “a canal at the inside of your ankle that houses tendons (what connects muscle to bone) and your tibial nerve.” Symptoms of the syndrome can include burning, aching and sudden pain in and around your ankles and feet. Causes of the syndrome range from flat feet, constant strain on your ankles and feet and an anatomic anomaly where there is too little space for the tibial nerve. Treating your tarsal tunnel syndrome involves physical therapy, custom orthotics and massages around the affected area.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. 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 one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about tarsal tunnel syndrome.

Monday, 12 December 2016 15:44

Benefits of Custom Orthotics

orthotics5Custom orthotics are foot devices that are inserted into your shoes to help accommodate and treat your foot conditions. Orthotics provide support for the arches of your feet, distributing pressure more evenly across the feet and helping to relieve pain in target areas, depending on your condition. Creating orthotics involves using a plaster casting based on the patient’s foot shape. Your doctor or physical therapist will properly customize your orthotics to fit your specific feet.

If you are having discomfort in your feet and would like to try orthotics, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor 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 over arched 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 issue, 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 more severe 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 on 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 feel free to contact one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Orthotics

Arthritis5There is a growing body of research that shows a possible link between wheat products and rheumatoid arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that can affect the joints and bones in many parts of the body, including ankles and feet. Certain proteins, ATI’s (amylase-trypsin inhibitors), may be causing inflammation in certain non-celiac patients. This means that wheat products could be contributing to symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis. Early detection of the disease is crucial as the prognosis in these cases has greatly improved as medical science has advanced.

Because RA affects more than just your joints, including the joints in your feet and ankles, it is important to seek early diagnosis from your podiatrist if you feel like the pain in your feet might be caused by RA. For more information, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s own immune system attacks the membranes surrounding the joints. Inflammation of the lining and eventually the destruction of the joint’s cartilage and bone occur, causing severe pain and immobility.

Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Feet

Although RA usually attacks multiple bones and joints throughout the entire body, almost 90 percent of cases result in pain in the foot or ankle area.

Symptoms

- Swelling & pain in the feet
- Stiffness in the feet
- Pain on the ball or sole of feet
- Joint shift and deformation

Diagnosis

Quick diagnosis of RA in the feet is important so that the podiatrist can treat the area effectively. Your doctor will ask you about your medical history, occupation, and lifestyle to determine the origin of the condition. Rheumatoid Factor tests help to determine if someone is affected by the disease.

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

Read more about Rheumatoid Arthritis

Monday, 28 November 2016 11:39

Avoiding Plantar Warts

fungal toenail2Working out at the gym can be one important way to maintain good physical health.  When exercising in public places, however, there is always an elevated risk of coming into contact with bacteria and viruses that are new to our own personal immune system.  Plantar warts are one of the conditions that might crop up when someone is exposed to warm, humid environments.  Caused by HPV (human papillomavirus), plantar warts appear as hard, callus like areas on the foot.  They can be very painful when even walking around normally.  There are various procedures for this condition that range from surgery to laser treatments; consult with your podiatrist to determine the best treatment for you.

Plantar warts can be very uncomfortable. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

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 one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about plantar warts.

Monday, 21 November 2016 19:20

How to Get Rid of Athlete’s Foot

athletes foot8Odor emanates from people’s feet due to sweat or a lack of good hygiene practices. Bacteria can form as a result of either of these two reasons, and it may produce a strong odor. They tend to form around areas that are moist on your feet, and they feed on skin oils and dead cells. When bacteria thrive, they eliminate waste in the form of organic acids, which causes feet to smell. In order to keep your feet bacteria free, you should change your socks daily, keep your toenails clipped and clean, dry feet thoroughly after showering, and swab in between your toes with rubbing alcohol.

Athlete’s foot is an inconvenient condition that can be easily reduced with the proper treatment. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Athlete’s Foot: The Sole Story

Athlete's foot, also known as tinea pedis, can be an extremely contagious foot infection. It is commonly contracted in public changing areas and bathrooms, dormitory style living quarters, around locker rooms and public swimming pools, or anywhere your feet often come into contact with other people.

Solutions to Combat Athlete’s Foot

  • Hydrate your feet by using lotion
  • Exfoliate
  • Buff off nails
  • Use of anti-fungal products
  • Examine your feet and visit your doctor if any suspicious blisters or cuts develop

Athlete’s foot can cause many irritating symptoms such as dry and flaking skin, itching, and redness. Some more severe symptoms can include bleeding and cracked skin, intense itching and burning and even pain when walking. In the worst cases, athlete’s foot can cause blistering as well. Speak to your podiatrist for a better understanding of the different causes of athlete’s foot, as well as helping you figure out which treatment options are best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technologies to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about athlete’s foot.

Monday, 14 November 2016 16:34

What Do Podiatrists Treat?

fungal toenail2While most people understand that podiatrists are foot doctors, many people still may not comprehend a podiatrist’s work and the various conditions a podiatrist treats. Various foot problems that many people experience and that a podiatrist can treat include plantar fasciitis, ingrown toenails, bunions, hammertoes, and flat feet.

Among the group who sought podiatric help, 88% reported a quick diagnosis and 76% received treatment that eliminated the problem. A third of the group said that their visits to the podiatrist exposed other health concerns, such as diabetes, circulatory issues, and nerve issues.

"It's not surprising to see how many people are affected by foot pain, when survey results show that we view our feet as the least important body part in terms of our overall health and wellbeing," said AMPA President Frank Spinosa. "Our feet are literally and figuratively the furthest things from our minds."

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek care of a podiatrist when they have suffered a foot injury or have common foot ailments such as: heal spurs, bunions, arch problems, deformities, ingrown toenails, corns, foot and ankle problems etc.

Podiatric Treatment

A podiatrist will treat the problematic areas of the feet, ankle or lower leg by prescribing the following:

  • physical therapy
  • drugs
  • perform surgery on lower extremity fractures
  • orthotic inserts or soles

A common podiatric procedure a podiatrist will use is a scanner or force plate which will allow the podiatrist to know the designs of orthotics. Patients are then told to follow a series of tasks to complete the treatment. The computer will scan the foot a see which areas show weight distribution and pressure points. The podiatrist will read the analysis and then determine which treatment plans are available.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What is a Podiatrist.

Monday, 07 November 2016 15:25

The Difference Between Corns and Calluses

toenail fungus7Corns and calluses are thickened areas of skin that may develop from repeated rubbing or pressure. The difference between the two of them is that corns appear on the top of the toes, and calluses appear on the bottom of the foot. Both of them, however, may cause pain for the individual who has them. Corns that are not painful do not require any sort of treatment, but if your corns are causing severe discomfort or pain, you should see a podiatrist. 

If you have any concerns regarding your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Corns: What are they? And how do you get rid of them?
Corns can be described as areas of the skin that have thickened to the point of becoming painful or irritating. They are often layers and layers of the skin that have become dry and rough, and are normally smaller than calluses.

Ways to Prevent Corns
There are many ways to get rid of painful corns such as wearing:
- Well-fitting socks
- Comfortable shoes that are not tight around your foot
- Shoes that offer support

Treating Corns
Treatment of corns involves removing the dead skin that has built up in the specific area of the foot. Salicylic acid can help in getting rid of these corns because it dissolves keratin, which is the protein that makes up a good majority of corns. Podiatrists recommend that people with diabetes not use salicylic acid but should consult with their podiatrist regarding the treatment of corns.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Baltimore, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Corns on the Feet.

running shoe9Preventing running injuries involves several things, including being mindful of your own feet’s health. Conditions such as plantar fasciitis can result from too much stress on your feet or factors such as improper footwear. Make sure to replace your shoes every 500 miles and to wear properly-fitting shoes that provide support. Socks can also influence your foot health. Make sure to choose lightweight, breathable socks. Proper hygiene and foot massages can both help alleviate pain in your feet experienced from injuries.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Michael Doughty of Doughty Podiatry, P.A. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

Many common running injuries are caused by overuse and overtraining. When the back of the kneecap starts wearing out and starts causing pain in your knee, this is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Runner’s knee is a decrease in strength in your quadriceps and can occur if you’re not wearing properly fitted or supporting shoes. To prevent runner’s knee, focusing on hip strengthening is a good idea, as well as strengthening your quads to keep the kneecaps aligned.

What Are Some Causes of Running Injuries?
- One cause of a common running injury is called iliotibial band syndrome.
- Plantar fasciitis is also another common injury.
- Stress fractures can occur from overtraining, lack of calcium, or even your running style.

Best Ways to Prevent Running Injuries
- Wear footwear that fits properly and suits your running needs.
- Running shoes are the only protective gear that runners have to safeguard them from injury.
- Make a training schedule. Adding strengthening exercises as well as regular stretching can help keep you strong and limber and can lessen the possibility of injuries.
- Stretching keeps muscles limber, this will help you gain better flexibility.

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

Read more about How to Prevent Running Injuries

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