On last night’s episode of “Resurrection,” Jacob’s father cut himself and needed stitches. What else should he receive?? A tetanus shot. In theory, any cut or scratch can lead to a tetanus infection, even if it’s not severe enough to require stitches. Tetanus infections can be serious and even fatal in some cases. Thus, it’s important to keep your tetanus status current, and to ask if you need a tetanus shot after any injury, as some are more susceptible than others to tetanus infection.
Eat nuts to decrease your risk of diabetes, reduce your cholesterol, and reduce your mortality risk! Nuts were associated with a “significantly reduced risk of mortality” in a recent study of people at high cardiovascular risk. Nuts have also been shown to decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes and to reduce cholesterol. A handful (1.5 ounces) is optimal, particularly since nuts are high in calories, and it’s best to avoid salted or sugar coated nuts.
It’s important to be aware that playing through an ankle sprain risks increasing the ligament, tendon, and/or cartilage damage that may have occurred from the initial injury. (Also, people sometimes assume that they “sprained” their ankle when they actually broke or fractured it.) Once these structures have healed enough to allow a return to sports, however, ankle braces are a much better option versus taping the ankle, as they provide far more support than taping provides. Fore more information visit our Ankle Sprain page.
A pulmonary embolism is a blood clot in the lungs that usually originates from the deep veins in the legs, where it is termed a DVT or “deep vein thrombosis.” Many factors put people at increased risk for DVT, including immobilization, trauma, estrogen-containing medications such as hormone replacement and birth control pills, smoking, some surgeries, cancer and other medical conditions. Patients in the hospital can also be at increased risk for blood clots, and this should be discussed with the doctors caring for your loved one in the hospital. PE can be fatal, and common symptoms of PE include shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, and chest pain. Awareness of the condition can lead to early diagnosis and offers the best chance at a full recovery.
Anyone who uses the pharmacy drive-thru for prescription medication pick-up may want to be aware that pharmacists in a recent report ranked drive-thru windows high among distracting factors that can lead to delays and errors with prescription processing. If you use the drive-through, make sure to check that both the drug and the dose are what your doctor ordered for you.
One major retailer had “ultra-light weight” running shoes on sale today for $19.99. A customer next to me said to her husband “it’s definitely worth a try for the price.” These shoes were “minimalist” type shoes that were very lightweight, but also extremely flexible. I could bend and twist them like a towel, just as can be done with a thin flip-flop. I caution people about these types of footwear, as there is very little protection for your feet. Therefore, these can place you at higher risk for stress fractures (especially if you’re female), puncture wounds and heel pain and/or pain in the ball of the foot, among other problems. This is particularly true if you have high arches (as these feet often don’t absorb shock as well) or flat feet (as this foot structure results in extra motion occurring which can mean more stress on your feet.)
Hallux limitus and hallux rigidus are conditions that involve stiffness, pain, and arthritis of the great toe joint or joints. This can occur after prior trauma or with foot structures that result in extra stress being placed on the big toe joint. There is often a bone spur, “bump” or hard area/bony prominence on the top of the big toe joint, and this tends to get larger over time. Treatment options for hallux limitus and hallux rigidus include orthotics, stiff-soled shoes, and topical medicines. For those patients who are still suffering after conservative care measures have been employed, surgery is a good option if desired in order to improve the pain that often causes people to avoid participating in activities that they used to enjoy.
If treated early in the process, and before the arthritis is too advanced, outpatient surgery (which does NOT require you to be “put out” or undergo general anesthesia and which allows you to return home a few hours after the procedure) does not require a cast or crutches, and can allow you to be back in your regular shoes in two weeks! As with arthritis in other joints (including at the knee and hip), arthritis in the big toe joint is considered a progressive condition, which means it typically becomes worse over time. Call us to have your pain or stiffness evaluated before your arthritis worsens, causes you more pain, and requires more advanced treatment. You can reach us at 586-298-1585!
Visit our page on Arthritis for more information.
Derek Jeter has started hitting balls off a tee as he prepares to “get back into the swing” following a broken ankle, reminding us that sometimes we need to go back to the basics. Here are two basic yet very important foot care principles: 1) Foot pain is not normal, and is your body’s signal that something is wrong. There are a variety of causes for foot pain, and many treatment options available that can get you back to living your active, pain-free life. 2) For people with diabetes or poor circulation (which is called PAD or peripheral arterial disease), it’s critical that they inspect their feet every day for signs of skin breakdown or infection. These include open sores/wounds, redness, warmth, new swelling, etc.
Cheers to everyone who participated in the recent walk to cure diabetes! Currently, 25.8 million people/8.3% of our US population has diabetes. Diabetics can be particularly prone to foot problems, including infection, wounds/sores, and neuropathy/nerve damage. For those with diabetes, the American Diabetes Association recommends that “your health care provider should perform a complete foot exam at least annually—more often if you have foot problems.” Having trained at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation where we had a busy clinic for those with diabetes, helping to prevent some of the foot problems that occur with diabetes is a particular interest and passion of mine. You may schedule an appointment with me at 586-298-1585. For more information about how diabetes can affect the feet, you may visit https://tenderfootandanklecare.com/diabetic-foot-care/
Tom Brady’s Patriots lost to Peyton Manning’s Broncos in yesterday’s AFC title game. Brady was featured on the cover of a recent issue of Men’s Health that contained an article titled “The Truth About Barefoot Running.” Running barefoot or in minimalist shoes has been a trend for some people. However, many podiatrists and other health professionals are concerned that this places runners at increased risk for stress fractures, Achilles tendon injuries, and other foot problems such as plantar fasciitis (a very common cause of heel pain.) Many of us have seen an increase in these types of problems in our patients who have begun barefoot running. Certain foot structures and abnormal mechanics already make foot/ankle problems more likely for some people, so be sure to talk with your doctor before beginning such an endeavor. Let’s keep your feet and ankles healthy so that you can go the extra mile if necessary!