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Items filtered by date: October 2020

The tarsal tunnel is a narrow tunnel in the ankle, next to the ankle bone, that serves as a pathway for nerves, veins, arteries and tendons. Tarsal tunnel syndrome occurs when the tibial nerve in this tunnel gets squeezed or pressed. Common causes of tarsal tunnel syndrome include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, overpronation (rolling) of the foot, or a cyst or ganglion that can form near the tunnel. Symptoms of tarsal tunnel syndrome include a burning pain that radiates to the arch of the foot, numbness in the sole of the foot and worsening of symptoms after running or standing for a long time. If you believe that you might be suffering from tarsal tunnel syndrome, it is important to visit a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and treatment. Treatment options that may be considered include cold therapy, medication, injections, specific exercises, corticosteroid injections or surgery.

Tarsal tunnel syndrome can be very uncomfortable to live with. If you are experiencing tarsal tunnel syndrome, contact one of our podiatrists of Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors 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 office located in Itasca, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Monday, 19 October 2020 00:00

What Happens During an Ankle Sprain?

An ankle sprain, which occurs when there is a tear in the ligaments that connect the bones and stabilize the ankle, is one of the most common injuries in sports. Activities that require jumping, turning, or twisting, such as basketball, volleyball and football, increase the risk of an ankle sprain. Other risk factors include a previous ankle injury, lack of strength, stability, or flexibility in the ankle, sudden direction changes, and poor balance. Common signs of an ankle sprain include swelling, bruising, instability, and pain, particularly during weight bearing activities. Proper diagnosis of an ankle sprain requires the help of a podiatrist. X-rays will need to be taken in order to rule out a fracture, and the sprain will be assessed on a grading scale from 1-3. Upon diagnosis, rest, ice and elevation are usually suggested, and your podiatrist will provide stability options as well. If you believe that you have recently sprained your ankle, make sure to consult with a podiatrist today. 

Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact one of our podiatrists from Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains are the result of a tear in the ligaments within the ankle. These injuries may happen when you make a rapid shifting movement while your foot is planted. A less common way to sprain your ankle is when your ankle rolls inward while your foot turns outward.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Pain at the sight of the tear
  • Bruising/Swelling
  • Ankle area is tender to touch
  • In severe cases, may hear/feel something tear
  • Skin discoloration

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

In many cases, the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevate) is used to treat ankle sprains. However, you should see a podiatrist to see which treatment option would work best with your injury. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

It is important to ask your doctor about rehab options after you receive treatment for your injury. Stretching, strength training, and balance exercises may help the ankle heal while also preventing further injury.

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

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Monday, 12 October 2020 00:00

Symptoms of Bunions in Children

Bunions that develop in young children are referred to as juvenile hallux valgus. They may exist as a result of genetic traits, or from wearing shoes that do not have adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Noticeable signs that your child may have a bunion can include a bony protrusion that forms on the side of the big toe, and red and swollen appearance. A proper diagnosis can consist of having an X-ray taken, as this may help to determine how severe the bunion is. When the bunion is identified at an early stage, it may be effective to use non-surgical techniques to obtain mild relief. These can include wearing shoes that have a wide toe area, or using custom-made insoles that may help to alleviate pressure. If your child has a bunion, it is strongly suggested that you seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

If you are suffering from bunions, contact one of our podiatrists of Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is a Bunion?

A bunion is formed of swollen tissue or an enlargement of boney growth, usually located at the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The swelling occurs due to the bones in the big toe shifting inward, which impacts the other toes of the foot. This causes the area around the base of the big toe to become inflamed and painful.

Why Do Bunions Form?

Genetics – Susceptibility to bunions are often hereditary

Stress on the feet – Poorly fitted and uncomfortable footwear that places stress on feet, such as heels, can worsen existing bunions

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

Doctors often perform two tests – blood tests and x-rays – when trying to diagnose bunions, especially in the early stages of development. Blood tests help determine if the foot pain is being caused by something else, such as arthritis, while x-rays provide a clear picture of your bone structure to your doctor.

How Are Bunions Treated?

  • Refrain from wearing heels or similar shoes that cause discomfort
  • Select wider shoes that can provide more comfort and reduce pain
  • Anti-inflammatory and pain management drugs
  • Orthotics or foot inserts
  • Surgery

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

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Plantar fasciitis, a condition that causes pain in the heel and bottom of the foot, is common and has many different treatments. Resting the foot limits its movements and allows time for healing. Icing the foot can decrease pain and swelling, as can taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications. For when you need to be on your feet, orthotic shoe inserts can help cushion and support your foot. Doing certain stretches and strengthening exercises can increase the flexibility of your feet and make the plantar fascia stronger, thereby decreasing pain. In rarer cases, when conservative treatments have failed and pain interferes significantly with daily activities, surgery may become an option. To discover the best treatment options for you, seek the care of a podiatrist.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact one of our podiatrists  from Itasca Foot & Ankle. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

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

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
Saturday, 03 October 2020 00:00

Why Live with Pain and Numbness in Your Feet?

Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

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