If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site

Duncansville (814) 696-3397


pedal
 

January 2019

Monday, 28 January 2019 00:00

Diabetes and Limb Salvage

Those with diabetes are at a much higher risk of facing amputation of a limb than others. In 2016 alone, over 12,000 California residents had to undergo diabetes related amputations. It is easy for someone with diabetes to not realize the severity of the situation, because they often lose feeling in their peripheral nerves. The problem usually starts with a blister on the foot that easily goes unnoticed, therefore untreated. These blisters can become infected, which escalates because diabetes is associated with poor circulation in the limbs. As more time passes the infected foot continually loses more tissue and as tissue loss increases, so does the possibility of amputation. Fortunately, there are advances in medicine that have been able to save limbs that would have been lost in the past, but limb salvage is still a major concern for those with diabetes. If you have diabetes, it is important to regularly check your feet for any irregularities and to consult with a podiatrist about any issues that could affect you in the future.

Diabetic Limb Salvage

Diabetic limb salvage can be an effective way in preventing the need for limb amputation. If you have a foot ulcer and diabetes, consult with Dr. Bert Altmanshofer from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Diabetic Limb Salvage?

Diabetic limb salvage is the attempt of saving a limb, such as the foot, that has an infected ulcer, from amputation. Podiatrists also try to make sure that there is enough function in the foot after the salvage that it is still usable. Those with diabetes experience poor blood circulation, which prevents proper healing of an ulcer. If the ulcer is left uncheck, it could become infected, which could result in the need for amputation.

Diabetes is the number one cause of non-traumatic amputations in the United States. Amputation has been found to lead to higher mortality rates. This translates into higher healthcare costs, and a reduced quality of life and mobility for amputees. Podiatrists have attempted to increase the prevalence of limb salvage in an attempt to solve these issues.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Limb salvage teams have grown in recent years that utilize a number of different treatments to save the infected limb. This includes podiatrists that specialize in wound care, rehabilitation, orthotics, and surgery. Through a combination of these methods, limb salvage has been found to be an effective treatment for infected limbs, and as an alternative to amputation. Podiatrists will first evaluate the potential for limb salvage and determine if the limb can be saved or must be amputated. 

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

Read more about Diabetic Limb Salvage
Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

What Is a Blister?

A blister is defined as a small area that is filled with fluid on the surface of the skin. It is typically the result of increased friction in that portion of the skin, and generally occurs when the foot regularly rubs against tight shoes. When blisters develop on the feet, it may be difficult and painful to walk, and equally hard to treat. There are several causes why this uncomfortable foot condition may develop, including wearing shoes and socks that are too tight, allergic reactions to an insect bite, or the debilitating condition known as frostbite which may damage blood vessels in the skin. Research has shown the average blister will heal on its own within a few days, and it’s important to leave them alone while they are filled with fluid. If you are noticing blisters on your feet often, it is suggested to speak with a podiatrist who can guide you in choosing the correct shoes which may alleviate this condition from occurring.

Blisters may appear as a single bubble or in a cluster. They can cause a lot of pain and may be filled with pus, blood, or watery serum. If your feet are hurting, contact Dr. Bert Altmanshofer of Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Foot Blisters

Foot blisters are often the result of friction. This happens due to the constant rubbing from shoes, which can lead to pain.

What Are Foot Blisters?

A foot blister is a small fluid-filled pocket that forms on the upper-most layer of the skin. Blisters are filled with clear fluid and can lead to blood drainage or pus if the area becomes infected.

Symptoms

(Blister symptoms may vary depending on what is causing them)

  • Bubble of skin filled with fluid
  • Redness
  • Moderate to severe pain
  • Itching

Prevention & Treatment

In order to prevent blisters, you should be sure to wear comfortable shoes with socks that cushion your feet and absorb sweat. Breaking a blister open may increase your chances of developing an infection. However, if your blister breaks, you should wash the area with soap and water immediately and then apply a bandage to the affected area. If your blisters cause severe pain it is important that you call your podiatrist right away.

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

Read more about Blisters
Monday, 14 January 2019 00:00

Is Obesity Connected to Plantar Fasciitis?

Research has shown there are several uncomfortable foot conditions that may develop as a result of being overweight. The excess weight may put additional pressure on the plantar fascia, which is the tissue that connects the heel to the toes. If this tissue should become torn or inflamed, the condition that is known as plantar fasciitis may develop. It is known to cause severe pain and discomfort and the ability to perform daily activities may be compromised. The pain is typically felt in the heel and surrounding areas and wearing custom-made orthotics may provide a moderate level of relief. Patients who are obese may have trouble in practicing a routine exercise regime, and this may be a result of the inability to move freely, often caused by uncomfortable heel pain. If you have any form of heel pain, it is suggested to speak to a podiatrist who can properly guide you to correct treatment options.

Obesity has become very problematic at this point in time and can have extremely negative effects on the feet. If you’re an obese individual and are concerned about your feet, contact Dr. Bert Altmanshofer from Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Obesity and Your Feet

Since your feet are what support your entire weight when standing, any additional weight can result in pain and swelling. Being overweight is one of the main contributors to foot complications.

Problems & Complications

Extra Weight – Even putting on just a few extra pounds could create serious complications for your feet. As your weight increases, your balance and body will shift, creating new stresses on your feet. This uneven weight distribution can cause pain, even while doing the simplest tasks, such as walking.

Diabetes – People who are overweight are at serious risk of developing type-2 diabetes, which has a drastic impact on the health of your feet. As you get older, your diabetes might worsen, which could lead to loss of feeling in your feet, sores, and bruises. You could also become more prone to various infections.

Plantar fasciitis – Pressure and stress that is placed on muscles, joints, and tendons can trigger plantar fasciitis, which is an inflammation of tissue that forms along the bottom of the foot. 

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

Read more about Obesity and the Feet

Many people enjoy the practice of yoga to achieve more than adequate stretches in their feet. When the proper stretches are performed, they may aid in keeping the feet strong. If a fall should occur, having strong feet may help in preventing painful ankle sprains or fractures. The feet endure the weight of the body for most of the day, and it’s important to understand that proper stretching may keep the feet flexible and supple. An effective stretch that may open the ankles, toes and plantar fascia is to kneel while sitting on your heels and keeping the toes tucked under. There are several other efficient poses, which may include threading your fingers between your toes and holding this position for a few minutes. This may help to loosen that arch of the foot. Additionally, performing the downward dog yoga pose will benefit the Achilles tendon, toes, and foot muscles. Balancing the body on the toes is effective in building strength and flexibility, even though it may feel uncomfortable at first. If you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Why Stretching is Important for Your Feet

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Bert Altmanshofer from Pennsylvania. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first to determine if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous exercise, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

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

Read more about How to Stretch Your Feet
Wednesday, 02 January 2019 00:00

Can Cracked Heels Be Prevented?

Many people who enjoy walking barefoot or wearing flip-flops during the summer months may be surprised to learn that there may be consequences that can follow as a result of this. The skin may become dry, calluses may possibly form, and fissures in the skin of the heels, known as cracked heels, may develop. If the cracks in the skin should bleed, severe pain, discomfort, and infection may accompany this condition. There may be remedies that can be practiced to prevent and relieve extremely dry skin, and these may include washing and drying the feet thoroughly followed by utilizing a good moisturizer. At this point, it is suggested to wear socks while sleeping for the night, and this may aid in healing painful fissures. If you would like additional information about how to treat cracked heels, it is advised to consult with a podiatrist who can discuss the best options for you.

If the skin on your feet starts to crack, you may want to see a podiatrist to find treatment. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Bert Altmanshofer from Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

It is important to moisturize your cracked heels in order to prevent pain, bleeding, and infection. The reason cracked heels form is because the skin on the foot is too dry to support the immense pressure placed on them. When the foot expands, the dry skin on the foot begins to split.

Ways to Help Heal Them

  • Invest in a good foot cream
  • Try Using Petroleum Jelly
  • Ease up on Soaps
  • Drink Plenty of Water

Ways to Prevent Cracked Heels

  • Moisturize After Showering
  • Skip a Shower
  • Keep Shower Water Lukewarm
  • Don’t Scrub Your Feet

If you are unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels, seek guidance from a podiatrist. Your doctor will help you with any questions or information you may need. 

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

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Connect with us