What do fungal toenails look like?
Typically the nail has a yellowish discoloration but can range from dark brown, orange, green, canary yellow, to white. It usually has thickening of the nail or peeling in layers. The nail could be lifting and ingrowing as well.
What causes fungal toenails?
It is an infection of the nail plate with a fungal organism, usually after a small trauma or ill fitting shoes. Any invasion to the nail bed can introduce a nail fungus.
What is fungus?
In biology, fungus are classified as a living organism in a separate category from animals, plants, and bacteria. They are in the Fungi Kingdom. The chitin makes them different from plants, which have cellulose. Most commonly, we think of mushrooms and yeast as fungus.
What are the treatments?
Self treatment is very limited because the nail thickens and most of the over the counter products are not effectively absorbed into the nail bed. The other problem is trimming a thick nail with a regular clipper is almost impossible. Filing off the thick parts is always recommended, but do not hurt your skin or make the nail bleed.
Successful cure of the fungal nail often involves a combination therapy to be effective. A sample of the nail is taken to confirm the diagnosis. This test only takes a week to get back the results and is very accurate. Then the treatment can be started.
If the toenail is causing an infection of the skin, some or all of the nail may need to be removed. This is usually done after numbing the toe with local anesthetic. It can be done in the office and usually resolves within one to two weeks.
Patience with the process is needed – remember that toenails may take up to one year to fully grow out.
Spring is here, sandals and flip flops are back, and so is your Plantar Fasciitis. This diagnosis is probably one of the most common diagnoses we treat as podiatrists. Heel pain is most commonly caused by Plantar Fasciitis (sometimes called Heel Spur Syndrome).
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammation of the ligament (band of tissue) that connects you heel to your toes. This band of tissue helps keep you arch up. Your symptoms may include pain on the bottom of the heel and sometimes along the arch. Pain may be worse when first getting up in the morning.
What causes Plantar Fasciitis?
Almost everyone gets Plantar Fasciitis, but most resolve in one to two weeks. Wearing non-supportive footwear puts abnormal strain on the plantar fascia and can result in Plantar Fasciitis.
How is Plantar Fasciitis Diagnosed?
Your podiatrist will ask you some questions about the nature of the pain and how it developed overtime. Plantar Fasciitis is diagnosed mainly by history and exam. Your doctor may want to get x-rays to rule out other diagnoses that mimic Plantar Fasciitis.
What are the treatments for Plantar Fasciitis?
Self treatment should not be attempted if you suspect and infection, if you see bruising or swelling, the symptoms are persistent, have diabetes, nerve damage, or poor circulation. Your Podiatrist may recommend stretching your calf muscles, avoiding barefoot walking, using ice, reducing activity, shoe changes, anti-inflammatory medications, and loosing weight.
If your symptoms persist call and make an appointment with your podiatrist. You podiatrist may use padding and strapping, prescribe custom molded orthotics, recommend a cortisone injection, place you in a walking cast, have you wear a night splint, or prescribe physical therapy.
In our office, for someone who has had persistent Plantar Fasciitis, we typically get an x-ray, discuss the etiology and treatment plan, scan for custom orthotics, give a cortisone injection, and schedule a follow up visit. Our facility is equipped with an x-ray machine, and we use a Pedaling digital orthotics scanner. If you have persistent heel pain call for an appointment today.
What's and Ingrown toenail?
This is when the edge of nail plate cuts into the side of your toe. The nail then festers, causing pain, redness, swelling, and possibly an infection.
What causes ingrown toenails?
Most ingrown toenails are not caused by anything you did. Ingrown toenails can be hereditary, they can be cause by injury to the nail or toe, and can also be cause by poor cutting of toenail.
What is the treatments for an ingrown toenail?
Self treatment should not be attempted if you suspect an infection, have diabetes, nerve damage, or poor circulation. Home care may include soaking your foot in warm water and gently messaging the side of the nail. Do not perform "bathroom surgery", and avoid repeated applications of antibiotic ointments. Some antibiotic ointments may cause a localized allergic reaction if repeatedly applied.
Physician care may include Oral Antibiotics, Surgical Removal of the nail border, or Permanent Chemical Removal of the nail border. The most common treatment your podiatrists wound recommend would be a Partial Nail Avulsion. This procedure includes an anesthetic injection to "numb" the toe, just as you would get with your dentist when having a filling placed. About an 1/8 of and inch is removed from the side of the nail, and this is like removing a splinter from your skin. The toe is bandaged and instruction on care is given. Most patients' toe feels better by the next day, and infection resolve withing 3 to 5 days.
Ingrown toenails are common, and your podiatrist can help. Call and make an appointment today, get it treated, and recover quickly.
What is a Podiatrist? What is Podiatry? What do Podiatrists do? What is a Podiatrists training? Where do I go when I have foot pain? Who should I see when I have ankle pain?
The American Podiatric Medical Association has put together a website explaining Today's Podiatrist. This website focuses on educating the general public about Podiatrists and our role in the medical community. It also has great information about the importance of foot health and education on foot ailments. TodaysPodiatrist.com
Also watch the one minute video Meet Your Feet.
The American Podiatric Medical Association, which we are members of, put together a brochure on Skin Cancers of the Feet. Please check it out, as it may save the life of someone you love.
If you or someone you know has a lesion on their feet that looks suspicious please bring them in to get it checked out.
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