Conditions

Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis is a condition that can be quite painful, and often results from overuse and inflammation of the Achilles tendon. Because the Achilles tendon is the largest in the body, it is frequently ruptured.

This condition can often develop thanks exercising too strenuously, increasing mileage too rapidly, returning to exercise too quickly after a break or other means. Symptoms of Achilles tendonitis include:

  • Pain localized to the tendon
  • Tenderness in the morning
  • Swelling in the leg
  • Stiffness around the tendon

Your physician may recommend a number of treatment options to patients who suffer from Achilles tendonitis, including resting the tendon, stretching exercises, orthotics, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication or surgery.

Ankle Fractures

Ankle fractures are breaks in the bones that makeup the ankle, and can be caused by a number of things, including:

  • Twisting the ankle
  • Rolling the ankle
  • Tripping or falling

Some patients may experience a simple fracture in just one bone of the ankle joint, while others may experience several fractures in the three bones that make up the joint, causing the ankle to be much more unstable.

Symptoms of an ankle fracture include severe pain, swelling, bruising, deformity of the ankle and more. A physician will conduct an examination, typically taking X-rays of the affected ankle to determine how serious the fracture may be.

Treatment for ankle fractures varies. An orthopaedist will determine whether or not surgery is necessary, and if it is, can perform surgery to repair the ankle.

Ankle Sprains

Ankle sprains are incredibly common and can occur in men and women of all ages. A sprain is caused when the ankle is twisted in a way that isn't natural. The ligaments of the ankle may be torn or stretched.

A physician may recommend treatment options for an ankle sprain ranging from home treatment to surgery. These treatments include:

  • Applying ice to the sprain
  • Compressive bandages
  • Immobilization and resting the ankle
  • Surgery to repair the ligaments

While most patients can recover completely from ankle sprains, it's important to seek treatment so that long-term complications don't develop.

Bone Spurs

Bone spurs are growths of bone that can develop on the feet, typically near the heel or the toes. They result when the plantar tendon pulls at the place where it attaches to the bone of the heel. These bone spurs can be quite painful.

Your physician can recommend a course of treatment to rectify bone spurs, which may include special shoes or inserts, anti-inflammatory medication or cortisone injections. In some, more severe, cases, surgery may be necessary.

Bunions

Bunions are common conditions that occur in the feet, causing the base of the big toe to protrude unnaturally. In some cases, the skin around the bunion may appear red and feel tender to the touch, and the skin at the bottom of the foot may be thick and painful. Bunions can make wearing shoes uncomfortable, and can make walking quite painful and even difficult. They are often caused by shoes that fit improperly—shoes that are too tight and narrow can squeeze the foot, resulting in a bunion.

Depending on the progression of your bunion, your physician may recommend a number of different treatment options. In most cases, surgery is not necessary. Patients can wear protective pads along the area where the bunion occurs, as well as wear shoes that fit properly.

In more severe cases, bunion surgery is necessary. Called a bunionectomy, this procedure will realign the toe and the foot to correct the deformity.

Diabetes

Diabetes is a common condition that affects men and women of all ages. While diabetes has many serious complications and consequences, foot problems are a major risk. It's important that those with diabetes take special care of their feet and ankles to avoid further problems, including amputation.

Many diabetics suffer from something called peripheral neuropathy, in which they have reduced sensation in their extremities. In this case, a diabetic patient may not feel an injury to the foot like an ulcer, which can cause it to go untreated and become infected. Injuries heal slower in diabetics, so infections can spread and worsen. Puncture wounds, ulcers, cuts, scratches, bruises and other injuries are all cause for serious concern in diabetic patients.

Dr. Spiegl has been treating diabetic foot wounds for more than 30 years and our entire staff understands the critical necessity of getting advance wound care quickly. Unlike a typical wound care center with dressing changes, we use advanced modalities including dermal skin substitutes to heal an ulcer quickly and eliminate amputations. We act aggressively and work in conjunction with a network of local providers such as endocrinology, neurology, infectious disease, etc. Each patient is important to us and we take pride in getting the best results for our patients. Our facilities include a convenient on-site surgical center for procedures should that be necessary.

Statistics say that if the wound has not significantly improved in 4 weeks, then the wound has a low chance of healing without advanced care. If you or a loved one have a foot ulcer, call our office for an immediate appointment.

Foot Deformities

Foot deformities are disorders that affect the feet, and can affect the bones, tendons or muscles. They occur when the foot is not formed properly, and can often cause pain or trouble walking.

Common deformities of the foot may include:

  • Claw toe
  • Clubfoot
  • Flat feet
  • Hallux Varus
  • Metatarsalgia
  • Spurs
  • And more

Some foot deformities are present at birth, while others develop over time. Some patients with foot deformities experience pain and loss of mobility, while others do not. Still, it's important to allow a skilled orthopaedist to examine a foot deformity to determine if treatment is necessary.

Hammertoes

Hammertoe is a deformity that occurs in the feet, causing one of the middle toes to bend unnaturally. It's called as such because of the way an affected toe may resemble a hammer. Hammertoes that aren't treated properly may require surgery over time.

Corns and calluses are often associated with hammertoes, causing further discomfort. These can occur on the top of the middle joint of the toe, or on the tip of the toe. Patients who suffer from hammertoes may have trouble finding shoes that fit properly and comfortably as well.

Your physician may recommend a number of treatment options for hammertoes, such as wearing properly fitting footwear, performing toe exercises or surgical options.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are common problems, typically resulting from nails that are trimmed too short. They occur most commonly along the sides of the big toe, where the nails may dig into the skin if they're cut too short.

If ingrown toenails develop, they can become tender, sore and red. In some cases they may become infected. Soaking them in warm, soapy water can help, as can inserting a bit of cotton or dental floss between the skin of the toe and the toenail. If the ingrown toenail develops an infection, a doctor may recommend antibiotics or surgical removal of part of the toenail.

Simple ways to prevent ingrown toenails from developing to begin with include:

  • Keeping the toenails trimmed, although not too short
  • Wearing shoes and socks that fit properly and are not too tight
  • Keeping your feet clean
  • Trimming toenails straight across

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a condition that is caused when the plantar fascia, or the tissue that connects the base of the toes to the heel, becomes inflamed. It can result in pain in the heel of the foot, arch pain and difficulty walking.

Plantar fasciitis is commonly caused by overuse or overtraining. Runners who add too much mileage too quickly, for instance, or athletes who return to a strenuous course of exercise too quickly after time away, are at risk for plantar fasciitis if they aren't careful.

Treatment for plantar fasciitis may include conservative measures like anti-inflammatory medications, applying ice to the area, stretching, physical therapy and orthotics. In some, more severe cases, we often recommend non-surgical extracorporeal shock wave therapy.

Stress Fractures

Stress fractures are small cracks or breaks in the bones of the feet that commonly occur in the forefoot area. They are often caused by overuse or overtraining, improper technique or form or change in training surfaces.

These tiny fractures can occur in the feet of men and women of all ages. They are particularly common in those who participate in repetitive exercises, like running. Patients who experience stress fractures will feel pain with activity that subsides as they cease their activity. Because stress fractures can worsen over time, it's important to seek treatment.

Treatment for stress fractures may include rest, switching to a less impactful activity until the fracture heals, custom orthotics and casting.