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Posts for category: Foot Condition

By Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala
July 16, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Warts  

Ouch! Have you stepped on a stone? No, the pain continues with each step. Dr. Robert Linn, Jr., your podiatrist at Foot & Ankle Center of Plantar WartOcala, says you have a plantar wart on your heel. Don't worry! This highly treatable, benign growth will be gone before you know it so your foot looks and feels normal again.


What is a wart?

Roughly textured, and grey to brown in color (sometimes darkly speckled), warts can appear on the face, hands and feet. Your Ocala, FL, podiatrist sees many plantar warts--the ones on the thick skin of the soles of the feet. Because of the pressure exerted by weight-bearing and walking, plantar warts tend to grow more inward, rather than creating a raised bump.

Warts are not cancer. Rather, they come from skin to skin contact with someone infected with HPV--the Human Papillomavirus.

Found most everywhere, the virus can survive briefly on surfaces such as doorknobs, shower stalls, faucets and locker room floors. In other words, warts spread very easily. Also, the virus tends to live under skin indefinitely and somehow becomes active when conditions are right.


Treating warts

The first step is identification by your podiatrist. He may see that your warts are forming groups, or clusters, called mosaic warts. Whatever the case, he treats warts in several ways in the office or at home. All are easy and at worst, minimally invasive.

Dr. Linn in Ocala, FL, will inspect all surfaces of both feet to determine the location, size, and quantity of your warts. Then, he will recommend treatments tailored to your needs.

Treatment may include:

  • Application of salicylic acid via patches or liquid
  • Cryosurgery, or freezing
  • Electrodesiccation, "zapping" the wart with a mild, but effective, electrical current
  • Surgical excision with a scalpel (local anesthetic is applied first)

Of course, if you can prevent warts from forming in the first place, you're better off. Always wash your feet daily with warm water and soap. Dry them completely with a clean towel, and wear clean socks and dry (not sweaty) shoes. Avoid going barefoot outside or at the gym or poolside.


Have happy feet

Locate and treat those bothersome warts. For help with this podiatric problem, or any other foot or ankle issue, please contact the Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala in Ocala, FL, Monday through Friday at (352) 861-1055.

By Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala
April 19, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Ingrown Nails  

Swelling, reddened flesh, shooting pain, and pus are just some of the incredibly uncomfortable symptoms of having an ingrown toenail. Although this condition can sometimes be successfully treated through home remedies, ingrown toenails often progress to the point of infection, a point that then requires professional treatment. Read on to learn what causes this problem, when it’s right to seek medical help, and how our podiatrists can help get your foot back to a healthy state!

The Causes and Symptoms

Before we cover how to treat ingrown toenails, let’s first review the core causes and symptoms that hallmark this condition…

Ingrown toenails initially develop due to a few different factors, including:

  • Cutting the toenail too short
  • Rounding the toenail during grooming
  • Wearing improperly fitting shoes
  • Experiencing toe trauma

If the flesh on the side of the toe has become red, swollen, and tender, you likely have an ingrown toenail. If you have caught this problem while it’s still in its early stages, you can try implementing some of the home remedies listed in the next section. However, if your toe is exhibiting some of the following signs of infection, you should seek professional podiatric help:

  • Pervasive shooting or throbbing toe pain
  • Regular bleeding
  • The presence of a pus-filled blister
  • The skin has started growing over the nail

Home Remedies

As mentioned above, if an ingrown toenail is caught before infection sets in, there are a few different methods that you can practice at home in order to clear up the issue. Some of these include:

  • Around 3 to 4 times a day, submerge your foot into warm water for 15 to 20 minutes. Regularly doing this should reduce swelling and provide pain relief.
  • Following each soaking, use cotton to separate the ingrown toenail from the flesh that it is starting to grow under. This should allow the nail to grow above the skin again.
  • Avoid snug or constraining shoes.

If these actions fail to clear up the problem in 2 to 3 days, you should pursue professional treatment.

Professional Treatments

In the case of a severe or recurring infection, there are a few different procedures that your podiatrist can perform to make your toe healthy again. Depending on the specifics of your ingrown toenail, one of the following treatments may be recommended:

  • Partial Nail Removal: In the case of a severe ingrown toenail, your doctor can numb your toe before physically removing the ingrown portion of the nail.
  • Nail and Tissue Removal: If the same toe is repeatedly experiencing the same ingrown toenail problem, this procedure can be performed to prevent future recurrences. It entails your podiatrist removing a portion of the underlying nail bed, thus preventing the nail from become ingrown again.

Concerned About Your Toe? Give Us a Call!

If your ingrown toenail needs medical attention, call our podiatric office today!

By Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala
April 10, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Wound Care  

Puncture wounds to the feet can happen when stepping on a sharp or pointed object. Although they obviously cause pain and discomfort, punctured woundsome people still do not realize how serious a puncture wound to the foot can be, even when the bleeding appears minimal. Read on to learn more about podiatric wound care, and for treatment, call Dr. Robert Linn at the Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala in Ocala, FL!


What are puncture wounds to the feet?

A puncture wound is an injury that occurs when a pointed object pierces the skin. Many people experience a puncture wound in the foot after stepping on a sharp or pointed object, such as a nail. These wounds are likely to occur when stepping on a sharp object with bare feet, but they can still happen even when wearing shoes. They can be quite painful, but they don't always result in much bleeding—however, proper treatment is necessary to prevent infection.


What complications can occur?

Possible puncture wound complications include:

  • Soreness at the wound site
  • Redness around the wound
  • Swelling around the wound
  • Drainage of the wound site
  • Formation of a cyst inside the wound
  • Infection and fever


How can puncture wounds in the feet be treated?

It is important to treat puncture wounds in the feet to prevent an infection from developing. Furthermore, it is possible that a piece of the object that caused the puncture wound, such as a glass shard or wood splinter, could be embedded in the skin. A podiatrist at our Ocala office can remove any embedded objects and thoroughly clean out the wound to help prevent infection. An x-ray might be necessary to ensure that no additional objects or debris remain in the wound. Antibiotics might also be prescribed to ward off the development of an infection.


Need medical attention? Give us a call!

For puncture wound care in Ocala, schedule an appointment with Dr. Linn by calling the Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala at (352) 861-1055.

By Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala
March 06, 2019
Category: Foot Condition
Is heel pain keeping you down? Pain that occurs following an injury or early in an illness may play a protective role, warning us about the damage we have suffered. SoYour Heel Pain Could Be Plantar Fasciitis what causes heel pain?
Plantar fasciitis is a foot condition in which a band of tissue in the sole of the foot becomes inflamed, leading to severe heel pain. The pain can be so bad that it hurts to walk, much less exercise or perform daily activities. If one step causes shooting pain in your heel—especially when you first get out of bed in the morning or stand up after sitting for a long period of time—plantar fasciitis may be to blame. Contact your podiatrist immediately for proper diagnosis and treatment of your pain. 

Understanding Heel Pain with Help from Your Podiatrist

Plantar fasciitis, or heel pain, occurs when the plantar fascia is strained over time beyond its normal extension. This causes the soft tissue fibers of the fascia to tear or stretch at points along its length, leading to inflammation, pain and possibly the growth of a bone spur where it attaches to the heel bone.
Inflammation may become irritated by shoes that lack appropriate support, mainly in the arch area and by the constant irritation associated with an athletic lifestyle. Resting may provide temporary relief, but when you resume walking you may experience a sudden elongation of the fascia band, which stretches and pulls on the heel. As you walk the pain may lessen or even disappear, but that may just be a false sense of relief, as the pain will often return after prolonged rest or extensive walking.  
You can take steps now to avoid heel pain, including:
  • Wear shoes that fit well
  • Wear proper shoes for each activity
  • Do not wear shoes with excessive wear on heels or soles
  • Prepare properly before exercising by stretching and warming up
  • Pace yourself when you participate in athletic activities
  • Don’t underestimate your body’s need for rest and good nutrition
  • Lose excess weight
If pain and other symptoms of inflammation persist, you should limit your normal daily activities and contact your podiatrist immediately.  
By Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala
July 05, 2018
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Hammertoes  

When most people think about foot deformities they most often think about bunions; however, hammertoes are just as common. This unassuming deformity comes about gradually, so you may not even notice it until it’s too late. “What is a hammertoe?” You might be wondering. A hammertoe affects the middle joint of a toe (often the smaller toes), causing the toe to bend downward. In severe cases, a hammertoe will look almost claw-like.

There are two kinds of hammertoes: flexible and rigid. As you might imagine, a flexible hammertoe is one in which you can still straighten the toe out. If you aren’t able to straighten the affected toe then this is a rigid hammertoe. A flexible hammertoe isn’t as serious as a rigid one; however, it’s important that you take care of your hammertoe to make sure that it doesn’t get worse.

While there is no way to cure a hammertoe there are simple measures you can take to prevent it from progressing. First and foremost, you need to take a look at the shoes you are wearing and make sure that they aren’t too tight. When you slip your feet into your shoes, does it cause your toes to bunch up against one another? If so then this could make your hammertoe worse.

Instead, opt for shoes with an ample toe box, which will allow your toes to wiggle and move around freely. If you have a structural imbalance within the foot this can leave you prone to foot problems such as hammertoes and bunions. To correct this imbalance, talk to your foot doctor about getting custom orthotics (shoe inserts), which can be placed into your shoes to help provide cushioning, support, and shock absorption for your feet.

If pain or stiffness does rear its ugly head you can choose to take an over-the-counter pain reliever like ibuprofen, which can tackle both pain and inflammation in one fell swoop, or you can place a towel-wrapped ice pack (never put ice directly on the skin, as it can cause severe burns) over the area for several minutes.

Just as you can buy pads to cover a bunion or callus, you can also buy a non-medicated protective pad to cover over a hammertoe. Since the deformed toe joint juts out this can leave the toe prone to calluses, which can cause pain when wearing shoes. To prevent a callus from forming, you can apply a protective pad over the deformed toe joint before putting on shoes.

Of course, if you are dealing with significant or frequent pain, or if the hammertoe is rigid, then you will want to turn to a podiatric specialist. In severe cases, surgery may be recommended to correct the disfigured joint.