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Posts for: December, 2013

Toenail FungusA new type of nanochip has been forged from recycled plastic by scientists at IBM and the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology in Singapore. The technology, which was made by using an organic catalyst, will work by attacking the infected cells in cases of toenail fungus and similar sicknesses.

Project chemist Yi Yan Yang explains some of the science of the chip: “The ability of these molecules to self-assemble into nanofibers is important because unlike discrete molecules, fibers increase the local concentration of cationic charges and compound mass.” Ideally, the nanofibers will take on cells that have become immune to the effects of fungus-treating drugs.

Sometimes toenail fungus can be hard to treat without professional help. For situations like this it’s recommended to consult a podiatrist like Dr. Alan Discont of Family Foot & Ankle Care, PC. Dr. Discont can determine how much the fungus has progressed and help you get the care you need.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

Toenail fungus is a problem which affects many people and is hard to get rid of. Fortunately, there are several methods to go about treating toenail fungus.

Antibiotics & Treatments 

Lamisil – is the most commonly effective treatment for toenail fungus. It is available as an antibiotic Terbinafine tablet and cream. Terbinafine is a chemical component which kills fungal growth on the body.  Applying regular doses will gradually kill the fungal growth. It is important to keep the area clean and air free.  

Talcum powder – applying powder on the feet and shoes helps keep the feet free of moisture and sweat.

Sandals or open toed shoes – wearing these will allow air movement and help keep feet dry. They also expose your feet to light, which fungus cannot tolerate. Socks with moisture wicking material also help as well

Alternative Treatments

Those who are skeptical or unsure of using Lamisil containing terbinafine may consider the following:

- Alcohol, tea tree oil, hydrogen peroxide, or Vicks VapoRub will help as well.

For more information about Toenail Fungus, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our two offices which are located in Sun Lakes or Chandler, AZ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Toenail Fungus.


By Alan J. Discont, DPM, FACFAS
December 18, 2013
Category: Foot Care

Physically active feetYour feet are made up of 26 bones, 33 joints, 112 ligaments and a vast network of tendons, nerves and blood vessels.  Each of these parts works in harmony, enabling you to walk, run and jump normally and without pain.  

But before jumping into a rigorous workout or fitness program that involves running, you may want to give your feet some extra attention, starting with a trip to your Chandler podiatrist. A professional podiatrist can properly examine your feet, detect potential problems, and provide tips for injury-free training and shoe selection.

Beginning runners are not the only ones who should see a podiatrist. Frequent runners should also pay their podiatrist a visit from time to time to check for any stress on the lower extremities brought on by repetitive force.

Common injuries experienced by runners include plantar fasciitis, heel spurts, Achilles tendon and stress fractures.

Helpful Tips for Preventing Injury

In addition to visiting Family Foot & Ankle Care, PC, you can also prevent injuries that commonly occur during training and running by stretching properly, choosing appropriate footwear and paying attention to pain or signs of an injury. 

  • Stretch

To prevent injury to your lower extremities, it’s important to stretch carefully before beginning any workout regimen. When muscles are properly warmed up and stretched, the risk for injury is greatly reduced. Appropriate stretches include stretching of the hamstring and wall push-ups.

  • Choose Proper Footwear

The type of shoe you should wear also plays an important role in your ability to run without pain and with optimal performance. The shoe that your foot requires will depend on your foot structure and function, your body type, and the type of running or workout regimen. Your podiatrist may also prescribe an orthotic, or shoe insert, to alleviate any foot pain or anomalies.

  • Be Mindful of Injuries

Even with proper footwear and stretching, not all foot problems can be prevented. Whenever you experience pain, stop whatever workout you are doing and rest. As pain subsides, gradually increase exercise with caution.  When pain persists, visit Family Foot & Ankle Care, PC for a proper evaluation.

New joggers and seasoned runners alike should take the necessary steps to avoid injury to the lower limbs. Consult with your Chandler podiatrist before start any new workout, and always seek professional care when pain or injury occurs.


Eleven-year-old Garrett Bonneville, center, with LaGrange Shriners Ralph Thompson, left, and James Shelnutt in LaGrange after his surgery at a Shriners Hospital for Children in Greenville, S.C.Flat feet can sometimes be so painful that walking becomes nearly impossible. Such was the case with 11-year-old Garret Bonneville, whose feet were so bad that orthotics in his shoes, braces, and bone surgery did nothing to improve them.

Finally, Garrett’s great-grandmother called the LaGrange Shrine club. The Shrine club is a group that works with non-profit hospitals to get care for children from disadvantaged families. Thanks to the Shrine club, Garrett has already had the corrective surgery he needed on his right foot, and is scheduled to have the procedure done on his left foot soon.

Pronounced cases of flat feet can be hard to live with. If you have flat feet and are in constant discomfort, seek the care of a podiatrist like Dr. Alan Discont of Family Foot & Ankle Care, PC. Dr. Discont can assess your condition and work with you to determine the best steps to take.

What are Flat Feet?

Flat feet are a condition in which the arch of the foot is depressed and the sole of the foot is almost completely in contact with the ground. Standing about 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arch never formed during growth.

Conditions & Problems:

Having flat feet makes it difficult to run or walk because of the stress placed on the ankles.

Alignment – The general alignment of your legs can be disrupted, because the ankles move inward which can cause major discomfort.

Knees – if you have complications with your knees, flat feet can be a contributor to arthritis in that area.  

Symptoms:

- Pain around the heel or arch area
- Trouble standing on the tip toe.
- Swelling around the inside of the ankle.
- Flat look to one or both feet.
- Having your shoes feel uneven when worn

Treatment:

If you are experiencing pain and stress on the foot you may weaken the posterior tibial tendon, which runs around the inside of the ankle. There are several ways to help treat this pain and help flat feet.

Barefoot- studies show that those who grew up going barefoot, wearing less closed-toe shoes have more of an arch.

To learn more about Flat Feet, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our two offices which are located in Sun Lakes or Chandler, AZ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Flat Feet.


SesamoiditisAccording to his doctors, AFL prospect Matthew Scharenberg has been diagnosed with sesamoiditis in both of his feet.

Unfortunately this means that Scharenberg, who was to enter the AFL in 2014, has an uncertain future.

Regarding his condition Scharenberg said, "It's sesamoiditis - the sesamoid bone in each foot is just a little inflamed and I've been told to rest," he said. "They (the feet) are not too bad. I'm just giving them a rest at the moment (and) just taking it each week at a time right now." Scharenberg still remains optimistic in spite of his diagnosis. "I'm confident (it won't be a problem) … absolutely. Injuries are a part of football.”

Sesamoiditis is an injury that occurs commonly in sports players and can be very painful. If you are suffering from foot pain and think it could be sesamoiditis, contact a podiatrist like Dr. Alan Discont of Family Foot and Ankle Care, PC. Dr. Discont can determine the cause of your pain and treat your condition quickly and effectively.

Sesamoiditis

Sesamoiditis is a condition of the foot that affects the ball of the foot. It is more common in younger people than it is in older people. It can also occur with people who have begun a new exercise program, since their bodies are adjusting to the new physical regimen. Pain may also be caused by the inflammation of tendons surrounding the bones. It is important to seek treatment in its early stages because if you ignore the pain, this condition can lead to more serious problems such as severe irritation and bone fractures.

Causes of Sesamoiditis

· Sudden increase in activity

· Increase in physically strenuous movement without a proper warm up or build up

· Foot structure: those who have smaller, bonier feet or those with a high arch may be more susceptible

Treatment for sesamoiditis is non-invasive and simple. Doctors may recommend a strict rest period where the patient forgoes most physical activity. This will help give the patient time to heal their feet through limited activity. For serious cases, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine a treatment option that will help your specific needs.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact our office in Chandler, AZ. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to fit your needs.

Read more about Sesamoiditis.


Poor CirculationA study done by scientists at the University of Colorado suggests that the likelihood of heart attacks in people who suffer from peripheral arterial disease can be lowered by taking medication for high blood pressure. PAD is often seen as a precursor for heart attacks, since it indicates poor circulation in the blood vessels near the heart.

The study took 53 PAD patients and gave blood pressure-controlling drugs to 22 of them. Of the 31 that didn’t take the drug, 12 of them had heart attacks while the experiment was being conducted. Only three of the patients that did take the medicine had heart attacks. This data could greatly influence the kind of treatment prescribed to PAD patients in the future.

Poor circulation, especially in the feet, is often a symptom of a larger problem. If you have circulation problems, contact a podiatrist like Dr. Alan Discont of Family Foot and Ankle Care, PC. Dr. Discont can diagnose your problem and get you the care you need.

What is Poor Circulation in the Feet?

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is 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. It usually restricts 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   
-numbness in legs
-cramps           
-skin discoloration
-weakness       
-slower nail & hair growth
-stiffness        
-erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes and or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, or 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 maintain a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions

To learn more about Poor Circulation in the feet, follow the link below.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact our office in Chandler, AZ. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Poor Circulation in the Feet.