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If you are a diabetic patient, it is important to know how to properly care for your feet. It is crucial to notice if there are any cuts or scrapes, and this may be beneficial in avoiding infections. Many diabetic patients suffer from neuropathy, and this is the inability to feel any sores that may be present on the feet. There are measures that can be implemented to care for diabetic feet, and these may include washing the feet daily, followed by drying thoroughly between the toes, avoid going barefoot, and refrain from cutting the toenails. This is typically done by a podiatrist, who is practiced in trimming the toenails correctly, which may avoid painful infections. Additionally, wearing shoes that fit properly and wearing socks that are not too tight may be beneficial in helping to take care of diabetic feet. If you are diabetic, it is advised you speak to a podiatrist as quickly as possible who can guide you to proper foot care.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

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

Read more about Diabetic Foot Care
Monday, 04 February 2019 00:00

What Is a Heel Spur?

If you are suffering from a sharp pain stemming from your heel, then you may have a heel spur. A heel spur is a calcium deposit that causes a hard protrusion underneath your heel bone. Oftentimes, they are linked to plantar fasciitis, which causes inflammation along the connective tissue between the heel bone and the ball of the foot. In an attempt to protect the heel’s surrounding tissues, cells migrate to the area and start depositing calcium. This build-up of calcium usually takes many months to fully form and is only visible by an X-ray. The heel spur only becomes painful, when it spreads into the surrounding tissues. For the most part, heel spurs do not exhibit any symptoms and do not cause any pain. This is due to the fact that the deposits of calcium are put there by the body’s bone-forming mechanisms, so they are smooth and flat. If you think you may have a heel spur or would like any additional information about them, then it is suggested that you speak with a podiatrist.

Heel spurs can be incredibly painful and sometimes may make you unable to participate in physical activities. To get medical care for your heel spurs, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will do everything possible to treat your condition.

Heels Spurs

Heel spurs are formed by calcium deposits on the back of the foot where the heel is. This can also be caused by small fragments of bone breaking off one section of the foot, attaching onto the back of the foot. Heel spurs can also be bone growth on the back of the foot and may grow in the direction of the arch of the foot.

Older individuals usually suffer from heel spurs and pain sometimes intensifies with age. One of the main conditions spurs are related to is plantar fasciitis.

Pain

The pain associated with spurs is often because of weight placed on the feet. When someone is walking, their entire weight is concentrated on the feet. Bone spurs then have the tendency to affect other bones and tissues around the foot. As the pain continues, the feet will become tender and sensitive over time.

Treatments

There are many ways to treat heel spurs. If one is suffering from heel spurs in conjunction with pain, there are several methods for healing. Medication, surgery, and herbal care are some options.

If you have any questions feel free to contact our offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

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Most people have heard of carpal tunnel syndrome, but not many are familiar with tarsal tunnel syndrome. Tarsal tunnel syndrome is the ankle’s equivalent to carpal tunnel syndrome. Both syndromes involve the trapping of a nerve. When tarsal tunnel syndrome occurs, the nerve stemming from the ankle to the foot becomes entrapped in a tunnel of bones and ligaments. This creates a pressure that sends sharp burning pain into the sole of the foot. Coupling over the counter pain medications, cushioning pads for arch support and abstaining from any activity that results in pain, can be used to lessen the pain initially. If the pain lasts for more than six weeks, then it is time to consult a podiatrist, so they can properly treat the condition.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

Tarsal tunnel syndrome, which can also be called tibial nerve dysfunction, is an uncommon condition of misfiring peripheral nerves in the foot. The tibial nerve is the peripheral nerve in the leg responsible for sensation and movement of the foot and calf muscles. In tarsal tunnel syndrome, the tibial nerve is damaged, causing problems with movement and feeling in the foot of the affected leg.

Common Cause of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
- Involves pressure or an injury, direct pressure on the tibial nerve for an extended period of time, sometimes caused by other body structures close by or near the knee.
- Diseases that damage nerves, including diabetes, may cause tarsal tunnel syndrome.
- At times, tarsal tunnel syndrome can appear without an obvious cause in some cases.

The Effects of Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
- Different sensations, an afflicted person may experience pain, tingling, burning or other unusual sensations in the foot of the affected leg.
- The foot muscles, toes and ankle become weaker, and curling your toes or flexing your foot can become difficult.
- If condition worsens, infections and ulcers may develop on the foot that is experiencing the syndrome.

A physical exam of the leg can help identify the presence of tarsal tunnel syndrome. Medical tests, such as a nerve biopsy, are also used to diagnose the condition. Patients may receive physical therapy and prescriptive medication. In extreme cases, some may require surgery.

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

Read more about Treating Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
Monday, 21 January 2019 00:00

Foot Soaks and Cracked Heels

If you have ever experienced the condition known as cracked heels, you are most likely aware of the pain and discomfort it may cause. It may be a result of wearing shoes or sandals that are backless, standing for extended periods of time, or medical conditions that may consist of athlete’s foot or psoriasis. There are methods that can be implemented, which may achieve a desired level of comfort, which may include soaking the feet in warm water with specific essential oils. This may aid in moisturizing the skin and reducing the cracks or fissures that are present. Additionally, many patients find it beneficial to exfoliate the skin on their heels, and this may be achieved by utilizing a loofah or pumice stone. If you have severely cracked heels, it is recommended to consult with a podiatrist who can offer additional treatment and preventative methods.

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna 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 offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Monday, 14 January 2019 00:00

Preventing Falls in Cold Weather

Research has shown the unnatural act of falling may be common among senior citizens. According to a portion of an AARP bulletin, deaths from falling is among the highest in the cold states of Wisconsin and Minnesota. In places where there may be an accumulation of snow, it may be beneficial to wear shoes that have traction or cleats, and this may aid in preventing any falls that may occur. If you must walk outside for extended periods of time, it may be helpful to look at your pathway a few steps in advance, and this may prevent any slipping on black ice. In addition to properly preparing your trek outside, it is important to check the condition of your home and remove items that may cause tripping. These may include repairing or replacing any loose carpeting and moving any extension cords that may be a falling hazard. If you have endured a fall and have injured your ankles or feet, it is suggested to speak with a podiatrist so proper treatment can begin.

Preventing falls among the elderly is very important. If you are older and have fallen or fear that you are prone to falling, consult with Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will assess your condition and provide you with quality advice and care.

Every 11 seconds, an elderly American is being treated in an emergency room for a fall related injury. Falls are the leading cause of head and hip injuries for those 65 and older. Due to decreases in strength, balance, senses, and lack of awareness, elderly persons are very susceptible to falling. Thankfully, there are a number of things older persons can do to prevent falls.

How to Prevent Falls

Some effective methods that older persons can do to prevent falls include:

  • Enrolling in strength and balance exercise program to increase balance and strength
  • Periodically having your sight and hearing checked
  • Discuss any medications you have with a doctor to see if it increases the risk of falling
  • Clearing the house of falling hazards and installing devices like grab bars and railings
  • Utilizing a walker or cane
  • Wearing shoes that provide good support and cushioning
  • Talking to family members about falling and increasing awareness

Falling can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience for elderly persons; this can make them less willing to leave the house, and less willing to talk to someone about their fears of falling. Doing such things, however, will increase the likelihood of tripping or losing one’s balance. Knowing the causes of falling and how to prevent them is the best way to mitigate the risk of serious injury.  

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

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Monday, 07 January 2019 00:00

Are Foot Massages Effective?

Research has shown that a popular form of therapy for the feet are foot massages. It is suggested there may be several benefits why this form of therapy is practiced, including strengthening the bones and muscles, increasing rejuvenating energy in the body, in addition to possibly helping with neurological diseases. The most common form of foot massages is known as the Swedish foot massage, and many patients enjoy this type of therapy for the relaxation and increased energy it may bring. Patients who have experienced ankle pain or arthritis may choose to have a reflexology foot massage performed, and this will typically focus on that specific part of the body. If you would like additional information about the effective types of foot therapy, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist who can answer any questions you may have.

Foot therapy is often necessary for those recovering from either foot deformities or foot injuries. If you have concerns regarding therapy, Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Most Common Injuries

People who are active or athletes are prone to a variety of injuries. Therefore, it is often important to take part in physical therapy in order to quickly get back on the right track. 

What To Do When Injured

Physical Therapy – This specialized treatment will focus on the affected area, speeding up recovery and the overall healing process. It is a proven method that has helped millions of people return from any injury.

During physical therapy you will undergo regimented training to get back into full form. Training is often very difficult, especially at first when the foot feels weak. Physical therapy often involves:

Basic stretching and twisting exercises – getting the feet’s mobility and flexibility up.

Massaging – the therapist will massage the injured area in order to activate the muscles and relax them.

Strengthening Exercises – this allows the muscles in the affected area to regain their full strength, a vital step towards full recovery.

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

Read more about Foot Therapy for Sports Injuries
Wednesday, 02 January 2019 00:00

Where Do Stress Fractures Occur?

If running and jumping are frequent activities that you participate in, you may experience stress fractures in your feet. It may typically occur as a result of repeated impact the feet endure and will appear as tiny cracks in the bone. The bones in the feet absorb the weight of the body, and this type of fracture is most likely to appear in the lower extremities. Stress fractures may happen to individuals who suddenly increase the intensity or change the type of sport they are engaging in, in addition to having certain medical conditions that may include osteoporosis, which can weaken the bones. There are several symptoms that are associated with this condition, including severe pain and discomfort, swelling, or possible bruising. Research has shown there may be methods than can be implemented, which may prevent a stress fracture from occurring. These may include ingesting a diet that is rich in calcium, which may aid in strengthening the bones, gradually increasing the power of your workout or chosen sport, in addition to wearing shoes that fit correctly. After a proper diagnosis is performed, which will typically include having an X-ray or MRI performed, recovery may begin. If you feel you may have endured a stress fracture, it is suggested to consult with a podiatrist, to discuss correct treatment options.

Stress fractures occur when there is a tiny crack within a bone. To learn more, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain free and on your feet.

How Are They Caused?

Stress fractures are the result of repetitive force being placed on the bone. Since the lower leg and feet often carry most of the body’s weight, stress fractures are likely to occur in these areas. If you rush into a new exercise, you are more likely to develop a stress fracture since you are starting too much, too soon.  Pain resulting from stress fractures may go unnoticed at first, however it may start to worsen over time.

Risk Factors

  • Gender – They are more commonly found in women compared to men.
  • Foot Problems – People with unusual arches in their feet are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Certain Sports – Dancers, gymnasts, tennis players, runners, and basketball players are more likely to develop stress fractures.
  • Lack of Nutrients – A lack of vitamin D and calcium may weaken the bones and make you more prone to stress fractures
  • Weak Bones – Osteoporosis can weaken the bones therefore resulting in stress fractures

Stress fractures do not always heal properly, so it is important that you seek help from a podiatrist if you suspect you may have one. Ignoring your stress fracture may cause it to worsen, and you may develop chronic pain as well as additional fractures.

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

Read more about Stress Fractures of the Foot and Ankle
Wednesday, 26 December 2018 00:00

Ingrown Toenails Can Cause Pain and Discomfort

Ingrown toenails can cause discomfort and severe pain if not treated promptly. The pain generally originates when the nail on the big toe grows into the skin surrounding it. Some of the more common reasons why this ailment may occur can include trimming the toenails improperly and wearing shoes that are too tight and does not have adequate room for the toes to move about in. General symptoms may include pain while walking or running, redness, swelling, or fluid oozing if the toenail should become infected. There are several ways to treat an ingrown toenail, and it is advised to seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can help to determine which one is best for you.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

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

Read more about Ingrown Toenail Care
Monday, 17 December 2018 00:00

Common Causes of Blisters

Research has shown blisters to be the most common medical condition among marathon runners. This may be a result of continued friction caused from the sock or shoe that is worn while running. As the skin becomes gradually damaged, the body creates a bubble containing fluid to act as a natural protectant. Research has shown similarities between people who commonly get blisters. These similarities may include performing vigorous activities that may consist of repetitive force, such as jumping and running; shoes that may fit incorrectly; or possibly from feet that have an unusual shape. There are measures that may be taken to possibly prevent blisters, including wearing shoes that are comfortable and fit properly, applying powder in shoes and socks, or taping the feet where a blister may occur. If you have a blister that is recurring and causes pain and discomfort, speak with a podiatrist who can offer proper prevention and treatment solutions.

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. Harry I. Zirna of Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna 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 offices located in Lockport and Medina, NY. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Blisters
Monday, 10 December 2018 00:00

Are Flat Feet Hereditary?

The medical condition that is referred to as flat feet is a result of the absence of the arch that feet generally have. This ailment is also known as fallen arches and is noticeable when the feet lie flat without a gap between the foot and the floor. Research has shown that genetics may play a significant role in the development of flat feet. Additionally, other causes may include arthritis or a ruptured tendon as a result of a possible injury. Patients who have this condition may observe pain or stiffness that may be present in the inner side of the ankle or where the arch would generally be. There may be effective treatment methods for this ailment, including wearing shoes that offer adequate support, in addition to possibly wearing orthotics. If you are experiencing pain and discomfort as a result of having flat feet, please speak to a podiatrist who can properly address any concerns you may have.

Flatfoot is a condition many people suffer from. If you have flat feet, contact Dr. Harry I. Zirna from Lockport Foot Care, PLLC. Dr. Zirna will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What are Flat Feet?

Flatfoot is 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. About 20-30% of the population generally has flat feet because their arches 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. 

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

Read more about Flat Feet
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