Podiatry is a field of medicine that focuses on preventing, diagnosing, and treating conditions associated with the foot and ankle by medical, surgical or other means.
The skills of podiatrists are in increasing demand because disorders of the foot and ankle are among the most widespread and neglected health problems.
Sore feet are generally caused by an abnormal foot structure. The foot normally elongates upon weight-bearing causing the muscles on the bottom of the foot to receive a great amount of stress which causes tired burning feet. I explained to patients, this is similar to a patient carrying around 150 lb. dumbbell all day and how the muscles in their arms would feel at the end of the day. Sometimes sore feet are just caused by shoes that are too tight.
A bunion is a bony deformity usually occurring around the big toe joint. Often, they are very painful. The common belief is that bunions are caused by tight or ill-fitting shoes, but actually, bunions are caused by a mechanical breakdown in the foot. Often, patients that have mild bunions and are not interested in surgery, we use orthotics which will help stop the progression of the bunion. Surgery is the only permanent solution for bunions. Orthotics are used after surgery to help prevent the reoccurrence of the bunion.
Thick and discolored toenails are often caused by a fungus that invades the nail. It is the same type of fungus that causes athletes foot. Sometimes this problem can be caused by trauma to the nails. Treatment for fungus to toenails is best using The Pinpointe Laser, but sometimes can be treated with topical medications. Sometimes thick nails are not fungus at all but are due to trauma either from something dropping onto the toenail or shoes that are too tight, especially athletic shoes. Athletic shoes should be fit so that there is a full fingers width in front of the longest toe while standing.
Surgery is usually used as a last resort with most podiatric problems. All conservative treatment should be exhausted before surgery is recommended. There are some instances where surgery is the first line of treatment, but that is not common.
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