Many people working on their feet all day tend to accept foot pain and fatigue as just another part of life, but the truth is, foot pain is not normal. Since our feet take on a great deal of stress during our normal, daily activities, it is extremely important to take good care of them.
The foot consists of 28 bones, 35 joints, 3 arteries, 4 veins, and 5 nerves. Because it is such a complex structure, your foot can be prone to injury and pain. There are a number of different problems that can affect the feet. Our foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Sarah Neitzel, is highly skilled in a number of different treatments and procedures to help with foot conditions, including the latest developments in minimally invasive surgery.
Bunions (also referred to as hallux valgus or hallux abducto valgus) are deformities that occur at the joint at the base of the big toe. The first long bone in the foot, called the first metatarsal, shifts outward at the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint, creating a protruding bump on the side of the foot and causing the big toe to shift toward the second toe.
The visible bump actually reflects changes in the bony framework of the front part of the foot. The big toe leans toward the second toe, rather than pointing straight ahead. This throws the bones out of alignment, producing the bunion’s bump.
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Diabetes affects all body systems. In the feet, it can limit your blood flow, decrease your nerve sensation and cause delayed healing to cuts and blisters, resulting in foot wounds. Commonly, patients end up with these wounds as a result of attempting to trim their own toenails and calluses.
If these patients lose feeling in the feet, coupled with poor circulation, it can also lead to very serious infections.
At Peninsula Podiatry, Dr. Sarah Neitzel is skilled in diabetic foot care and can help patients with the treatment and prevention of foot problems associated with diabetes.
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Having flat feet, a condition referred to as pes planus or fallen arches, is rarely serious, but can cause pain when you do extensive physical activity. If you have flat feet, your feet don’t have a normal arch when you are standing.
Flatfoot can be a complex disorder with diverse symptoms and varying degrees of deformity and disability. There are several types of flatfoot, all of which have one characteristic in common: partial or total collapse (loss) of the arch.
Heel pain is most often caused by plantar fasciitis, a condition that is sometimes also called heel spur syndrome when a spur is present. Generally, our feet can take on a lot of stress as we move around throughout the day, but overuse can cause inflammation, or the plantar fascia may tear where it attaches to the heel. The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that runs from the tip of the big toe all the way to the heel. It supports the arch of the foot and absorbs most of the stresses we place on our feet. When plantar fasciitis occurs, the plantar fascia first becomes irritated and then inflamed, resulting in heel pain.
The most common neuroma in the foot is Morton’s neuroma, which occurs most often between the third and fourth toes, and less often in the second through fourth toes. It is sometimes referred to as an intermetatarsal neuroma. “Intermetatarsal” describes its location in the ball of the foot between the metatarsal bones. Neuromas may also occur in other locations in the foot.
A neuroma is a thickening of nerve tissue that may develop in various parts of the body. The thickening or enlargement of the nerve that defines a neuroma is the result of compression and irritation of the nerve. This compression creates an enlargement of the nerve, eventually leading to permanent nerve damage.
A tarsal coalition is an abnormal connection that develops between two bones in the back of the foot (the tarsal bones). This abnormal connection, which can be composed of bone, cartilage, or fibrous tissue, may lead to limited motion and pain in one or both feet.
The tarsal bones include the calcaneus (heel bone), talus, navicular, cuboid, and cuneiform bones. These bones work together to provide the motion necessary for normal foot function.
Foot Pain Assessment in Silverdale, Washington
If you have persistent foot pain that doesn’t improve after 2 to 5 days of home treatment, schedule an office visit with Dr. Sarah Neitzel at Peninsula Podiatry. You can make an appointment online or call (360) 443-5632 to schedule your appointment.