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Tuesday, 16 August 2022 00:00

Is Podiatry a Good Career Choice for Me?

The type of doctor who specializes in foot conditions is referred to as a podiatrist. This type of doctor can diagnose and treat medical disorders of the foot and ankle. Research has indicated that podiatry dates back to ancient Egypt, and a scalpel was used to remove corns and calluses. Currently, a podiatrist will perform a physical exam in addition to listening to patients about specific foot concerns. Some of the conditions that podiatrists treat include bunions, hammertoe, and ingrown toenails. Surgery may be necessary to treat the removal of bone spurs, cysts, and tumors. Additionally, they are able to prescribe custom-made orthotics that may help to improve mobility and balance. There are doctors who choose to specialize in a specific branch of podiatry. These can consist of pediatric, sports, and advanced surgery which can rebuild the foot and ankle after an injury. Many podiatrists prefer to work in a hospital setting, general practice, or health maintenance organizations. If you think this is a positive career choice for you, please consult with a podiatrist who can help you with your decision. 

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact Dr. Catherine J. Minnick from Illinois. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek the care of a podiatrist if 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
  • Orthotic inserts or soles
  • Surgery on lower extremity fractures

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 our offices located in Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What is a Podiatrist?
Sunday, 14 August 2022 00:00

Are You Suffering From Ingrown Toenails?

If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can lead to more serious concerns, such as an infection. Knowing proper nail care can help in the prevention of an ingrown toenail. Give us a call, and get treated!

Tuesday, 09 August 2022 00:00

Being Proactive About Diabetic Foot Wounds

Diabetic patients commonly suffer from nerve damage known as diabetic neuropathy and circulatory problems in their feet. Nerve damage can cause tingling, numbness, and sensitivity, and also prevent the diabetic from feeling pain or detecting when they have a cut, crack, or another small abrasion on their feet. Any disturbance in the skin such as this would normally be able to heal, were it not for the inadequate flow of blood in the diabetic patient. So even the smallest undetected skin injury can worsen quickly and develop into a wound because it is not getting the supply of oxygen and nutrients it needs to heal. That is why it is vitally important for diabetics to inspect their feet daily and to see a podiatrist right away if anything unusual is spotted. Regular examinations with a podiatrist would be advantageous to the diabetic to prevent wounds from developing as well as be proactive about their foot health. 

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with Dr. Catherine J. Minnick from Illinois. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

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

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Tuesday, 02 August 2022 00:00

Common Causes of Ankle and Leg Pain

The ankles and legs put in a full day’s work for most people. As a result, when they cause pain, many of your normal activities can be disrupted. A large majority of pain to the legs and ankles is caused by injury to bones, muscles, joints, and ligaments. Blood clots, nerve or circulatory problems, and back injuries also may be factors. Conditions that commonly cause ankle pain include tendonitis, reduced blood flow, sprains, muscle strains, and stress fractures. Tendonitis, felt in the back of the ankle or leg, is usually the result of overuse, which causes inflammation. Sitting at a desk all day, or any type of sedentary lifestyle may result in a lack of blood flow to the lower limbs. This can cause blood clots and leg ulcers, the latter common among diabetics. A tear or rupture of the ligaments in and around the ankle is called a sprain, and if not properly cared for, it may end up as a chronic condition. Muscle strains are another repetitive injury that can produce pain and cramping. Stress fractures are tiny cracks in the bones, common to athletes who run and jump a lot. If ankle and lower leg pain are causing distress, please consult a podiatrist.


 

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with Dr. Catherine J. Minnick from Illinois. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.

Causes

The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms

Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.

Diagnosis

Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

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

 

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Some people find it difficult to find the right shoe size, and this may be a result of varying sizes between brands. The easiest way to get an accurate shoe size is by using a Brannock Device. Most shoe stores have this measuring tool, and it simplifies the way you can get an exact shoe size. If this is not available, there is an easy way to size your feet at home. This is done by taping a sheet of paper to the floor and one to the wall, followed by standing on the paper with your heel against the wall. A person is needed to trace the outline of your foot, and then it is beneficial to measure the length and width with a ruler. When shoes are tried on, it helps to purchase them at the end of the day when the feet are at their largest. Additionally, it is beneficial to wear the socks that would normally be worn with the shoes. The shoes need to fit comfortably when first tried on, as damage may occur to the feet if the wrong shoes are worn. If you would like more information about how to purchase the right size shoes, please ask a podiatrist who can help you with the right information. 

Getting the right shoe size is an important part of proper foot health. Seek the assistance of Dr. Catherine J. Minnick from Illinois. Our doctor will provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Getting the Right Shoe Size

There are many people who wear shoes that are the incorrect size, negatively affecting their feet and posture. Selecting the right shoes is not a difficult process, so long as you keep several things in mind when it comes to choosing the right pair.

  • When visiting the shoe store, use the tools available to measure your foot.
  • Be sure there is ‘wiggle room’. There should be about an inch between your toes and the tip of your shoes.
  • Do not always assume you are the same size, as manufacturers run differently.
  • Purchase shoes later in the day, as your feet swell as the day progresses.
  • If a shoe is not comfortable, it is not suitable. Most shoes can’t be ‘broken in’, and comfort should be the ultimate goal when it comes to choosing the right pair of shoes

As our feet hold our body weight and keep us moving, it is important to treat them right. Picking the right pair of shoes can provide your feet comfort and mobility without pain.

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

Read more about Getting the Right Shoe Size: To Keep Your Feet Happy
Tuesday, 19 July 2022 00:00

Symptoms of Cuboid Syndrome

One common foot affliction that can cause serious pain is known as cuboid syndrome. This condition causes pain primarily on the outer area of the foot, termed lateral foot pain. Cuboid syndrome occurs when the cuboid bone, a particularly small bone on the outside of the foot, dislocates. This dislocation can be caused either by ankle sprains or repeated trauma on the peroneus longus muscle. There are a number of symptoms that you may experience when you develop cuboid syndrome. In addition to lateral foot pain, you may notice yourself limping when you walk. Limping is common for people experiencing cuboid syndrome, because it indicates that the person is attempting to avoid walking on the cuboid bone. In addition, those suffering from cuboid syndrome might experience swelling and tenderness in the dislocated bone. Although symptoms can vary from patient to patient, you might also experience a feeling of weakness in the entire foot. This weakness can be most pronounced when beginning to jump or run. Cuboid syndrome can detrimentally affect the health of your feet and your lifestyle. It is suggested that you seek the help of a podiatrist to mitigate the pain and treat the condition.

Cuboid syndrome, also known as cuboid subluxation, occurs when the joints and ligaments near the cuboid bone in the foot become torn. If you have cuboid syndrome, consult with Dr. Catherine J. Minnick from Illinois. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Cuboid syndrome is a common cause of lateral foot pain, which is pain on the outside of the foot. The condition may happen suddenly due to an ankle sprain, or it may develop slowly overtime from repetitive tension through the bone and surrounding structures.

Causes

The most common causes of cuboid syndrome include:

  • Injury – The most common cause of this ailment is an ankle sprain.
  • Repetitive Strain – Tension placed through the peroneus longus muscle from repetitive activities such as jumping and running may cause excessive traction on the bone causing it to sublux.
  • Altered Foot Biomechanics – Most people suffering from cuboid subluxation have flat feet.

Symptoms

A common symptom of cuboid syndrome is pain along the outside of the foot which can be felt in the ankle and toes. This pain may create walking difficulties and may cause those with the condition to walk with a limp.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of cuboid syndrome is often difficult, and it is often misdiagnosed. X-rays, MRIs and CT scans often fail to properly show the cuboid subluxation. Although there isn’t a specific test used to diagnose cuboid syndrome, your podiatrist will usually check if pain is felt while pressing firmly on the cuboid bone of your foot.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are ice therapy, rest, exercise, taping, and orthotics.

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

 

Read more about Cuboid Syndrome

Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Tuesday, 12 July 2022 00:00

What Is a Plantar Fibroma?

A plantar fibroma is a benign, noncancerous, growth that is less than one inch in size and develops in the arch of the foot. It grows in the plantar fascia, the thick, fibrous tissue that runs across the bottom of the foot and stabilizes the foot arch. A plantar fibroma can develop on one or both feet. Anyone can develop a plantar fibroma, but it is most apt to occur in young or middle-aged adults and males. This growth appears on the bottom of the foot in the middle of the arch. It is characterized by small bumps that can be painless at first but become painful as the nodules grow larger. Since there is no known cause of a plantar fibroma, there is no way to prevent it. If you suspect you have a plantar fibroma, consult with a podiatrist who can make a diagnosis and provide treatment for it, or any other foot or ankle condition found.

A plantar fibroma may disrupt your daily activities. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Catherine J. Minnick of Illinois. Our doctor 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 Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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When you spend a lot of your time on your feet there is a good chance that you will experience foot pain at some point. This likelihood increases when you have rheumatoid arthritis. Experts say that most people with rheumatoid arthritis have daily pain in the feet and ankles. Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that attacks the joints in your body, specifically the synovial fluid that keeps the joints moving smoothly. Since the feet and ankles have so many joints they are common targets, causing inflammation, swelling, and pain. Being overweight compounds the problem of rheumatoid arthritis by adding more pressure to the foot and ankle joints. As a result, lower-impact exercises such as swimming, biking, and yoga are recommended as a way to maintain a healthy weight. Several specific exercises can help as well as wearing shoes with deep cushioning and a wider base. In addition, certain medications are available to confront the pain of RA flare-ups. If you have foot or ankle pain from rheumatoid arthritis that interferes with your daily activities, it is suggested to see a podiatrist for treatment options that work best for you.  

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. Catherine J. Minnick of Illinois. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

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 and 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 Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Feet

Inspecting your child’s feet regularly, and from an early age, is a good way to prevent foot problems in the future. If you notice any structural abnormality, be sure to see a podiatrist as soon as possible. Most congenital conditions, such as intoeing, may not correct on their own, but can respond positively if treatment is begun as the child’s foot grows and develops. Watch how your child walks to see whether their feet turn in or out. Check to see if they have knock-knees or other gait problems. Allow your young children to go barefoot on soft surfaces as this helps their muscle development, but be aware of hazards that could cause an injury, insect bite, or infection. However, it is not recommended that a child diagnosed with diabetes go barefoot. It’s important to maintain proper foot hygiene for your child. Feet should be washed daily and carefully dried, especially between the toes to ward off infection. If your child is active in sports, padded socks may help to prevent heel injuries. Monitor your child’s weight, as obesity can severely affect their foot growth and health. If you have further questions about your child’s foot health, please consult a podiatrist.

Making sure that your children maintain good foot health is very important as they grow. If you have any questions, contact Dr. Catherine J. Minnick of Illinois. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Keeping Children's Feet Healthy

Having healthy feet during childhood can help prevent medical problems later in life, namely in the back and legs. As children grow, their feet require different types of care. Here are some things to consider...

Although babies do not walk yet, it is still very important to take care of their feet.

Avoid putting tight shoes or socks on his or her feet.

Allow the baby to stretch and kick his or her feet to feel comfortable.

As a toddler, kids are now on the move and begin to develop differently. At this age, toddlers are getting a feel for walking, so don’t be alarmed if your toddler is unsteady or ‘walks funny’. 

As your child gets older, it is important to teach them how to take care of their feet.

Show them proper hygiene to prevent infections such as fungus.

Be watchful for any pain or injury.

Have all injuries checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Comfortable, protective shoes should always be worn, especially at play.

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

Read more about What to Do to Keep Your Child’s Feet Healthy
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