According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, about 15 percent of people with diabetes develop dangerous foot wounds, or ulcers. Often, they these wounds lead to compromised function and worse, amputation. Dr. Clint Vanlandingham of Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic says foot ulcers can be prevented or if they do develop, successfully treated. He and his staff work to educate patients on the importance of routine foot care, especially for diabetics and provide compassionate, accurate wound care in Poplar Bluff, MO, if problems do arise.
Setting the stage for a wound
Of course, traumatic injury to the foot may cause a wound, but more commonly, Poplar Bluff wound care applies to patients who are diabetic. The diabetic often experiences problems which encourage ulceration of the skin, underlying connective tissue and musculature of the foot, including issues such as:
- Poor circulation
- Elevated blood glucose
- Neuropathy, a painful condition affecting the nerves of the hands and feet
Additionally, physiological stressors lead to wounds. Common physical deformities such as hammertoes and bunions cause pressure points as do poorly fitting shoes. People who smoke or abuse alcohol often have poor wound healing so that a simple cut or abrasion develops into a serious ulcer.
The team at Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic use a variety of treatment modalities to restore wounded feet and ankles to full function and health. For diabetics especially, lowering blood sugar encourages better healing. In addition, the foot doctor may:
- "Offload" pressure from the wound or other parts of the foot with dressings, orthotics (shoe inserts) or special shoes to improve circulation
- Clean and debride the ulcer
- Apply medicated creams or ointments (antibiotics, simple saline, skin substitutes or growth factors)
- Apply ulcer dressings
- Surgically correct deformities such as bunions
Dr. Baller carefully examines all foot wounds to arrive at a customized care plan to treat the issue and help prevent problems from happening again.
Besides maintaining normal blood glucose levels, diabetics vigilantly should check the condition of their feet. Look for any cracks, redness or open sores. Contact your Poplar Bluff podiatrist right away with any concerns.
Additionally, people of all ages, regardless of their health, should apply good foot care practices. These include:
- Wearing well-ventilated and properly fitting shoes (not too tight and heels no higher than 2-1/2")
- Avoiding going barefoot
- Wearing water shoes poolside or in the shower room at the gym
- Keeping your feet clean and your nails clipped
- Wearing cotton or moisture wicking socks
Enjoy healthy feet
At the first sign of a wound problem, contact the team at Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic. The office team will arrange a convenient appointment so your feet can start feeling better right away. Call (573) 785-4546.
Wondering why your heel hurts? Dr. Clint Vanlandingham in Poplar Bluff, MO, discusses common causes of heel pain and explains what you can do to decrease your pain.
The Lego effect
If you've ever stepped on a Lego, small rock or other hard object, you know even small objects can cause significant pain. The day after you stepped on the object, you may have noticed that your heel hurt when you pressed on it, and it felt as if you were walking on a marble. The problem, officially called metatarsalgia, occurs when you bruise your heel. Metatarsalgia can also happen if you run and wear shoes without enough padding. Limiting the time you spend on your feet, wearing a heel cup, applying ice packs and taking over-the-counter pain medication can relieve the pain.
Heel fractures are not that common but can occur due to falling, jumping or automobile accidents. The fractures can be very painful and may cause bruising and swelling. You'll need to wear a cast or boot to protect and support your heel while it heals. Surgery may be recommended if the bones in your heal are no longer aligned.
Is your heel pain worse when you first wake up? You may have plantar fasciitis, a condition caused by the inflammation of the plantar fascia, the band of tissue that connects the toes to the heel. The condition can occur if you are on your feet a lot or enjoy running or walking for exercise. Rest, ice and non-prescription pain medication can be helpful, but if your pain doesn't go away, it's a good idea to make an appointment at our Poplar Bluff office. Depending on the severity of your condition, you may benefit from night splints, foot exercises, heel pads, cortisone injections and other treatments, including surgery, in some cases.
Tendinitis and bursitis
Achilles tendinitis and retrocalcaneal bursitis occur due to inflammation in the bursa at the back of your heel or the Achilles tendon. In addition to resting your foot and applying ice, you may benefit from a heel cup or walking boot, steroid injections, ultrasound treatment, shock wave therapy or surgery.
Are you ready to do something about your heel pain? Call Dr. Vanlandingham in Poplar Bluff, MO, at (573) 785-4546 to schedule an appointment.
What your podiatrists in Poplar Bluff want you to know
Proper foot care doesn’t have to take a big part out of your day. If you spend just a few minutes each day taking care of your feet, your feet can take care of you. It’s easy to forget about your feet, but they are vital to your ability to move around, walk, run, and get through your life. Your podiatrists at Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic in Poplar Bluff, MO want to share how to properly take care of your feet.
You can have great-looking, healthy feet by following these easy steps every day:
- Cleanse your feet with mild soap and dry them thoroughly
- Apply moisturizing cream or lotion
- Check your feet with a hand mirror and look for:
- Darkening and crumbling of your toenails, which could be a sign of toenail fungus
- Redness, swelling, or unhealed lesions, which could be a sign of infection
- Scaly, peeling, itchy skin, which could be a sign of foot fungus
- Bunions, calluses, corns or other abnormal growths
You can also add a foot scrub at least once each week. Use a pumice stone, salt scrub, or other abrasive to gently smooth away dead skin.
If you play sports, athlete’s foot can become a problem. That’s why you should always wear flip flops or sandals if you enter a public restroom or shower. You can also apply antifungal foot powder before putting on your shoes. To prevent an injury always wear the appropriate footwear for the sport you are playing, and remember to replace old, worn-out shoes.
If you have diabetes, your feet need extra care. That’s because diabetes affects most of the major systems of your body, causing problems in your extremities, especially your feet. Diabetic nerve pain (neuropathy) is a common problem that can be debilitating. Diabetic ulcers can result from an impaired immune system, and you can lose toes from lack of blood flow due to circulatory issues. If you have diabetes, it’s best to visit your podiatrists regularly to ensure you keep your feet healthy.
Proper foot care is an easy, but often overlooked part of your health regimen. Don’t forget your feet! For more information about foot care call your podiatrists at Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic in Poplar Bluff, MO. Protect your feet by calling today!
When you're a diabetic, it's vital to treat foot injuries right away. Even a small wound can turn into a serious foot ulcer if you don’t care for it quickly. Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic in Poplar Bluff, MO, offers a variety of diabetic wound treatments to their patients. Read on to find out how they can help take care of foot wounds if you're a diabetic.
1. Wound Assessment
Diabetes wounds fall into three categories: ischemic, neuropathic, and near ischemic. Failure to properly identify the wound type that exists can lead to an ineffective treatment plan, causing serious complications.
2. Wound Debridement
Wound debridement, or the removal of dead tissue from a wound, will stimulate wound healing, help with wound drainage and optimize a wound dressing’s effectiveness. Doctors typically recommend wound debridement by scissors or scalpel, but there are other tissue removal methods they may recommend, such as ultrasonic and autolytic larval.
3. Infection Control
Both topical and oral antibiotics are recommended for all patients who show signs of infection. Topical antimicrobial agents can reduce bacteria and prevent the spread of infection deeper into the wounds. Typical wound care dressings used in treating diabetes wounds are those impregnated with antimicrobial agents to help treat the infection.
4. Moisture Balance
Choosing the proper dressing for diabetes wounds is critical for a successful recovery. The right wound care dressing will help maintain a balanced moisture environment and allow the wound to heal properly. While each diabetic wound needs to be assessed properly, some common wound care dressings that can be used for wounds include films, hydrocolloids and alginates.
5. Pressure Reduction
For most wound treatment plans for diabetics suffering from ulcers, pressure reduction or offloading is a key factor in preventing serious complications. Total contact casting (TCC) is a specially designed cast designed to take weight off the foot in diabetics with foot ulcers.
If you have a diabetic wound, who should you call? A podiatrist, of course. Call Copper Top Foot & Ankle Clinic in Poplar Bluff, MO at 573-785-4546 to schedule an appointment. Our world-class podiatrists are dedicated to providing superior diabetic care in Poplar Bluff, MO. Get your life back on track by receiving the best wound treatment available. You'll be glad you did.
Getting back on your feet as soon as possible is a priority after you sprain an ankle, but returning to your usual activities too soon can prolong or worsen the injury. Your Poplar Bluff, MO podiatrists, explain what you should you do if you think you have a sprained ankle.
Get plenty of rest
Sprains occur when the ligaments in your ankle are stretched or even torn in some cases. It's important to give your ankle enough time to heal before you resume your daily run or hit the basketball court again. If your sprain is mild, you may be able to slowly resume your normal your activities in a few day. During your recovery period, limit walking and elevate your ankle on a pillow while you rest.
Treat swelling with ice packs applied to your ankle every two to four hours for up to 20 minutes at a time. Don't apply ice directly to your skin, as frostbite can occur.
Take pain relievers
Nonsteroidial anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), like ibuprofen and naproxen sodium, reduce both pain and swelling.
Wrap your ankle
Compression bandages not only support your ankle, but also help reduce swelling. Make sure the bandage is tight enough to provide support, but not so tight that it cuts off your circulation.
See your podiatrist if your symptoms don't improve
If your ankle doesn't start to feel better after a few days of rest, ice and bandaging, make an appointment with your foot doctor. Your Poplar Bluff podiatrist will take X-rays to make sure that your ankle isn't broken and may recommend that you use a walking boot, cast or crutches while you heal. He may also recommend physical therapy to strengthen the muscles that support your ankle. In severe cases, surgery may be needed to improve the stability of your ankle.
Do you suffer from foot or ankle problems? Your foot doctor can offer treatments that will reduce your pain and improve your mobility. Call Dr. Jeffrey Baller, Dr. Clint Vanlandingham and Dr. David Dowell, your Poplar Bluff, MO podiatrists, at (573) 785-4546 to schedule an appointment.
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