Posts for: May, 2018
May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month, which is a great time to help spread awareness of the many dangers of skin cancers. Although malignant melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, rarely appears on the feet, it is still important to recognize the early signs. Treating melanoma early is vital for the best chances of treatment and survival.
What causes melanoma in the feet?
The sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays are often associated with skin cancer, but surprisingly, melanoma on the feet often forms on the soles or on areas that weren’t exposed to sun. Common causes on the feet are viruses, stress, chronic inflammation, and genetic disposition. If you have someone in your family who has dealt with melanoma, it’s important to stay vigilant and check your body regularly.
What are the symptoms of melanoma?
We follow the A, B, C, D, E method of checking for melanoma. This involves a mole or spot that changes in size, texture, or color. Watch out for these warning signs:
- Asymmetry – a mole or mark with an uneven shape
- Border – ragged edges around a growth
- Color – changed colors, or different colors within the mole
- Diameter – a mole over 6mm
- Evolution – a mole or growth that has changed in any way over time
You should also check with your podiatrist if you have sores that are slow to heal, persistent itchiness or redness in an area, or pigments that are spreading to surrounding areas.
A board-certified podiatrist can assess any growth or changes to help diagnose melanoma and find the right path to treatment. It’s imperative that you catch this deadly disease early. Regularly inspecting the soles of your feet and other areas are just as important as visits to your podiatrist.
At Connecticut Foot Care Centers, our professional team of board-certified podiatrists keep abreast of the most advance technologies to help diagnose and treat foot and ankle ailments. If you notice any of the previously mentioned signs of melanoma, or if you are suffering from any other foot or ankle issues, get in touch with us. Click here to schedule an appointment or call one of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices today!
Parenting seems to come with an endless list of things to worry about! Each stage of growth seems to add a whole new set of items to the late-night “is this normal?” Google sessions that every parent does. One common area of parental worry, centered around the standing, cruising, and walking stages, is flat feet.
Some parents worry that their children’s feet are not leveling out properly and seem to appear flat. This isn’t always a cause for alarm as the arches in our feet take time to develop. Feet are considered fully developed at the age of 8. It’s natural to worry though, so here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers, we wanted to give you a few things to look for.
If you see the following issues, you might need to be concerned about your child’s flat feet:
Affected walking pattern. The way we walk, or our gait, is biomechanically specific to each of us. Children with flat feet tend to roll their foot inward excessively. This excessive in-rolling is called overpronation.
Fatigue in walking. It’s normal for most kids to want to be picked up and carried from place to place, but if your child has flat feet and seems to get very tired after walking, it could be a sign of discomfort.
Pain. If your child has pain in their heel, arch, or anywhere else in their foot or ankle, it is definitely time to bring them in to see a podiatrist. Even pain in the lower back or hips can be a sign of a greater issue in their feet.
If your son or daughter is experiencing pain or discomfort due to flatfoot, make an appointment to see one of our doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers. Treatment options often range from cutting down on certain activities, losing weight, starting physical therapy, orthotic devices, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication. Click here to schedule an appointment or call one of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices today!
If you have diabetes, foot care should become part of your every-day routine. An ulcer might seem benign to someone without diabetes, but we’ve seen firsthand how often they can lead to big trouble for our diabetic patients. Research from the American Podiatric Medical Association shows that 15% of diabetics suffer from ulcers and that ulcers put 6% of diabetics in the hospital. These infections occasionally lead to amputation of a foot or limb. Podiatry experts have said that ulcers and amputation are preventable.
These tips along with regularly scheduled visits to your podiatrist at Connecticut Foot Care Centers will help minimize the chance of foot complications for diabetic patients:
- Do daily checks. Get a mirror down under your feet to check for cuts, bruises, blisters, or punctures. Ulcers typically start on the sole of your feet, so be sure to check there daily. Don’t forget between your toes!
- Check for feeling. Run a blunt object along the bottom of your foot to ensure feeling persists. Nerve damage is common in diabetics and can lead to wounds going untreated.
- Keep your feet clean and dry. Wash your feet daily with mild soap and warm water. After you’re done, dry them thoroughly with a soft towel. Ulcers are less likely to develop on clean, dry feet.
- Trim your nails properly. Cut your nails straight across, but never too short. Curved nails can dig into the sides of your toes and create painful ingrown toenails.
- Properly dress your feet. Ensure your shoes fit your foot right. Too-tight or too-loose shoes can squeeze or cause rubbing and friction. Clean dry socks will naturally keep your feet clean and dry too. Bring an extra pair with you and change during the day if you need to.
- Manage your diet well. Follow the recommended dietary guidelines that your doctor laid out for you. Regularly check your glucose levels to ensure you’re in good standing.
- Quit smoking and cut back on drinking. Smoking constricts your blood vessels and alcohol can accelerate nerve damage. Either of these scenarios can lead to infections, ulcers, or other health complications.
A good relationship with your podiatrist is also a necessity if you have diabetes. Our knowledgeable foot doctors here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers can help get you on a path to foot health. Click here to schedule an appointment or call one of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices today!
If the sunny weather we are finally getting here in Connecticut is getting you back on your feet and active outside again, it’s important to take every precaution to keep your feet safe. The professionals here at Connecticut Foot Care Centers know that it’s important to keep an active lifestyle to stay happy and healthy. We also know the risks involved in certain sports.
Whether you’re a weekend warrior, or a pro athlete, be on the lookout for these common sports injuries and you’ll stay in the game:
A sprained ankle is one of the most common injuries associated with sports. It occurs when your ankle’s ligaments – the bands of tissue that connect the bones in your feet – are stretched or torn. Sprains can happen from a fall, a sudden twist, or a trauma that pushes the ankle joint in an unnatural position.
Ankle sprains must be evaluated and treated as soon as possible by a podiatrist. To prevent any further damage, elevate the foot and take your weight off of it. Ice can also prevent swelling until you see a foot doctor. Your doctor will likely take an x-ray of the ankle and prescribe physical therapy or medication. In very severe cases, surgery may be required to repair the damaged ligaments.
Stress fractures are tiny cracks in the surface of the bones in your feet. They often occur in the heel from repeatedly jumping or running on hard surfaces. Basketball players often suffer from stress fractures.
It’s important to rest if you experience a stress fracture. Constantly putting weight on the affected area – especially partaking in the sport that caused it – can greatly delay the healing process. Shoes with extra padding can help take the pressure off, but crutches might also be necessary. If a stress fracture continues to hurt, your foot doctor can assess and help decide what further treatment is needed.
The Achilles tendon is one of the most common areas to tear or rupture, causing severe pain, bruising, and swelling, referred to as Achilles Tendonitis. It is often caused by a sudden increase in a repetitive activity, like jumping or running. Stretching is a great, but not foolproof, preventative tool.
To treat this painful condition, rest is necessary. Icing the affected tendon can help reduce swelling in the early stages. Your podiatrist might prescribe anti-inflammatory medication, or suggest orthotics or night splints. Physical therapy might also help to regain strength in the tendon.
If you’re experiencing any pain in your foot, contact our knowledgeable doctors here at at Connecticut Foot Care Centers. We can help to get to the bottom of the issue and get you on your way to healthy feet. Click here to schedule an appointment or call one of our six conveniently located Connecticut offices today!