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Items filtered by date: August 2019

Monday, 26 August 2019 00:00

Achilles Tendon and Overuse

The Achilles tendon is known to be the largest tendon in the body. It connects the calf muscles to the heel, and it enables us to walk and perform running and jumping activities. Tendonitis may develop as a result of gradual damage that can stem from overuse. Patients who experience this type of injury typically have pain and discomfort in their calf and heel area. Additionally, it may be difficult to flex the foot, and there can be tenderness upon arising in the morning. Many patients may find relief by performing certain stretches that can strengthen the calf muscles. It may also be beneficial to wear orthotics as they can help heal an Achilles tendon injury. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which typically consists of having and MRI or X-ray taken, the correct treatment methods can begin. If you have endured this type of injury, it is suggested that you consult with a podiatrist who can offer you the best treatment options.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames of Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

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Saturday, 24 August 2019 00:00

Before you start dancing...

 

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Monday, 19 August 2019 00:00

What Are PRP Injections?

PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma. Now you may be thinking, what is platelet-rich plasma? Platelets are blood cells and they have several roles to play in the human body. For one, platelets cause blood clots, and they are also necessary for growth healing functions. Plasma is the liquid portion of blood. PRP therapy uses injections of a concentration of a patient’s own platelets to speed up the healing of injured ligaments, tendons, muscles and joints. This way, PRP injections only use your own healing system to improve musculoskeletal problems. Costs for PRP treatments are reported to run between $500 and $2,000. If you have pain in your Achilles tendon, or in other areas, PRP injections could potentially benefit you. Please consult with your local podiatrist for more information.

If you are suffering from a foot condition, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames of Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric concerns.

What Is PRP?

Platelet Rich Plasma, or PRP, is blood taken from a patient and spun in a centrifuge, concentrating the amount of platelets. The plasma is then re-injected into the site of injury or damage, assisting the body in repairing damage to muscles, tendons, ligaments, and tissue. PRP helps the body speed up its healing process.

Uses of PRP

Injuries affecting the foot sometimes don’t heal properly because of poor blood circulation. The healing time slows down, and recovery time is affected by poor blood supply. PRP injections will speed up recovery and resolve this issue.

Treatment

PRP is the first regenerative treatment for damaged muscles, tendons, and ligaments. No surgery needed. It is only applied with an insertion of a needle.

Ultrasound – An ultrasound is needed for proper placement of the platelets.

Injection – When the first injection is received, the patient will return to the doctor in about 2 to 3 weeks and monitor the recovery process.

Recovery time – Some people respond to treatments differently. Therefore, depending on your condition, the doctor will make any remaining decisions on how many more injections are needed, or if any additional ones are even required.

Benefits

One may be able to avoid major surgery, and recovery time will be cut down. PRP injections also avoid creating scar tissue and damage to the area. Risks are also very low using PRP as a treatment. There is no risk of rejection, contracting a disease from using another person’s blood, or infection.

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

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If there are weakened muscles in your toes, a medical condition that is referred to as hammertoe may develop. This can cause the tendons in the toes to become shorter, and they may bend downward, resembling a hammer. The toes that are typically affected are the second and third toes, but it may occur on any toe. It can be caused by genetic factors, or may happen from wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Patients who have hammertoe can experience difficulty in walking and flexing the feet, and corns and calluses may develop on top of the toes. When shoes that are worn fit properly, this condition could be prevented. Additionally, some patients find mild relief when shoe inserts or toe pads are worn. If you are afflicted with hammertoe, it is strongly suggested that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly treat this uncomfortable condition.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Florence, Alabama. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 05 August 2019 00:00

Possible Causes Of Cracked Heels

Cracked heels are a common foot condition, especially during the summer months. This can be a result of wearing shoes that have an open back, which typically provides inadequate support for the heel of the foot. The skin can become dry, and deep cracks that are known as fissures may form. Additional reasons why this condition may develop can include standing for extended periods of time throughout the day, excess weight the heels endure from being obese, and walking with a specific gait. Mild relief can be found when the feet are soaked in warm water, followed by using a good moisturizer frequently during the day. Research has indicated the importance of wearing shoes that fit properly, as this can be helpful in preventing cracked heels. If you are suffering from this ailment, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can guide you toward the correct treatment.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael T. Hames from Hames Foot Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

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

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