How To Pay For Laser Foot Fungus Treatments While Fast-Tracking Student Loan Payments

Posted by on Friday, June 28th, 2013

If you’re fast-tracking your student loan payments, chances are you don’t have much extra money lying around. Unfortunately, fungal nail treatments are not covered by medical insurance — if you’re one of the recent grads lucky enough to have insurance at all. (Approximately 40 million students do not.) Many people are drowning in medical debt, with 62% of all bankruptcies related to some sort of medical expense. Laser toenail foot treatments offer the latest technology to improve your condition, but how can you afford the procedure?

Long-Term Effectiveness of Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy For Plantar Fasciitis

Posted by on Thursday, June 27th, 2013

The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine offers New York City residents the most advanced therapies and treatments for a wide range of sports injuries, foot problems and chronic conditions. Plantar fasciitis (or severe heel pain) is one of the most common conditions we see here. Often, plantar fasciitis is caused through repetitive motion or overuse, which creates micro-tears in the plantar fascia tendon that runs from the heel along the arch of the foot. Sometimes wearing worn-out shoes can be to blame as well. One of the treatments we’ve seen some success with is Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT).

 

Cushioned Heel Running Shoes Drastically Affects A Person’s Gait

Posted by on Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Most of the running shoes you’ll find today feature a cushioned heel “for greater comfort.” However, it was recently discovered that these shoes may alter a runner’s biomechanics and actually diminish performance. This new report comes to us from the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS).

Does Red Wine Cause Gout?

Posted by on Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

There are plenty of reasons to love red wine – from cardiovascular benefits and a lowered risk of ovarian cancer, to improved resistance to bacteria and improved memory. It’s especially hard to resist when you can find amazing wine club deals online! Yet, red wine isn’t recommended for everyone – particularly people who fall prey to a debilitating condition known as gout.

How To Deal With Arthritis Foot Pain

Posted by on Monday, June 24th, 2013

Arthritis joint pain is the leading cause of disability in the United States, according to the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society. Three different types of arthritis can cause pain and stiffness in the foot and ankle joints. Osteoarthritis involves degenerative wear and tear of the cartilage. Rheumatoid Arthritis is a system-wide inflammatory disease where the body’s immune system attacks the cartilage. Post-Traumatic Arthritis develops due to disuse following an injury like a severe sprain or fracture.

The Power of Positive Thinking Aids Sport Injury Recovery

Posted by on Friday, June 21st, 2013

Positive thoughts don’t always come natural, especially when you’re healing from a serious injury. Sometimes you have to make spreadsheets reminding you of the good in life. Or you may have to read inspirational books to forget your pain and troubles. Overwhelming research suggests that there is some truth to the idea of “mind over matter” — and that the human mind does have the power to heal injury, to some degree.

 

Latest Advances in Bunion Surgery

Posted by on Thursday, June 20th, 2013

Here at our NYC Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine, we find there are many misconceptions about bunion surgery — primarily because people are not aware of the latest advances and technology. In the past, bunions required painful bone-crunching surgery, but that is not the case anymore.

Often, we treat bunions as an outpatient procedure and patients may return to work within days. There are over 100 different types of bunionectomies and techniques, so that is why it is important to choose a podiatric surgeon who understands the pros and cons of each treatment to give you the best possible care.

“Foot pain is not normal, including bunions, which can be very uncomfortable and, in some cases, even debilitating,” says APMA President Dr. Matthew Garoufalis. “There are numerous conservative and surgical treatment options today’s podiatrist can provide to patients with bunions.”

Bunion Surgery Of The Past

For many years, bunion surgery was not for the faint of heart. Sufferers of red bony bumps on the big toe would have to endure detachment of the toe joint, sawing of bone and stitching back together while under general anaesthesia. Only one foot would be operated on at a time, so patient would not be completely incapacitated. Even so, the recovery after bunion surgery could take up to three months of hobbling on crutches. Scarring was likely and open toe shoes were out of the question for at least a year. It’s no surprise many women opted not to have the second foot done after the first one had healed.

New Advances In Bunion Surgery

“Keyhole” procedures that went into the foot through a small opening have been around for many years, but were avoided by surgeons who worried that a conservative treatment may not prevent bunions from returning. “Older techniques involved cutting the bone and not using any form of fixation, such as pins and wires, to hold the new alignment of the toe in place,” Dr. Joel Vernois told the UK Mail.

By contrast, the new keyhole procedure for severe bunion deformity leaves permanent screws to fix the joint, but they are inserted through four tiny 3mm incisions around the big toe, so there is minimal scarring and post-operative pain is significantly reduced. Only a local anesthetic is needed, which also reduces complications.

The instruments used in the procedure were originally developed for facial surgery, so they are very fine and rotate at a high speed to make very precise cuts. Using a small drill called a burr and a wire, the toe is pulled back into alignment and small screws are implanted to hold the bones there. The wire is then removed, while the titanium screws permanently stay in place, without causing any discomfort. If necessary, lumps in the bone can be filed down. The speedy 30-minute procedure is done using x-ray guidance, so the surgeon can see what’s going on inside the foot at all times.

At our center, we have another technique we use that doesn’t require titanium screws at all. The Osteotomy Sparing Mini-Tightrope procedure is done by making tiny 1mm incisions through the first and second metatarsal bones and threading two sets of fiberwire suture made from a strong, hair-thin mesh wire through the openings on either side of the metatarsals. Once the sutures are in place, they are tightened to pull the bones into proper alignment. After the short procedure, patients wear a postoperative shoe or walking boot. Stitches are removed in a few weeks and most patients report little to no pain during recovery.

Other Types of Bunionectomies

“The procedures are designed to remove the ‘bump’ of bone, correct the changes in the bony structure of the foot, as well as correct soft tissue changes that may also have occurred,” explains Dr. Ira Fox. “In selecting the procedure or combination of procedures for a particular case, the surgeon will take into consideration the extent of the patient’s deformity based on the X-ray findings, age and activity level of the patient and other factors.”

In most cases, surgery is needed to correct a bunion. Lifestyle modifications, insoles and extra padding can only go so far in the treatment of bunions. Less severe bunions may be treated with an exostectomy, which shaves or thins the bump on the head of the first metatarsal bone using a surgical saw. This procedure is used when there is no angular deformity or big toe drifting.

People often ask us whether lasers can treat bunions. While lasers are being used in a number of late-breaking medical procedures these days, it is not conducive to bunion foot surgery. There is no removal of a “bunion” in the way a corn or a callus is removed. Rather, a “bunion” refers to the misalignment of the bones in the feet. Therefore, cutting and mending is the only approach. Lasers can aid in soft tissue growth removal and healing, but as Dr. Neil M. Blitz explains, “A laser would actually be detrimental to bone cuts, as the heat of the laser would burn the bone, thus prevent proper healing.”

If you have any questions about the latest advances in bunion surgery, please contact our NYC office. Our foot doctors have performed over 4,000 bunion corrections over the last 30 years, ranging from simple repairs to the most complex.

Comfy High Heels: Do They Even Exist?

Posted by on Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

We’ve all tortured ourselves one too many times. Maybe it was a blister, a corn, or a callus. Perhaps you wound up with stabbing plantar pain or swelling so bad you couldn’t get a sneaker on your foot for days. High heels can be a woman’s worst enemy at times — all in a quest to look good and professional. Yet, life doesn’t have to be so agonizing, say the experts at The Center for Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine in NYC. In addition to stopping by the office to get yourself fitted for a pair of custom orthotics, you can check out the following brands of comfy high heels to look and feel your best at the next social event.

Amusement Park Foot Safety

Posted by on Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

Roller coaster junkies have five new, highly-anticipated rides debuting for the summer of 2013, from Cedar Point in Ohio to Silver Dollar City in Missouri. Amusement parks can be a lot of fun, but they can also bring about tremendous amounts of pain if proper foot care isn’t taken into consideration.  Here are several other tips for amusement park foot safety this summer…

Podiatrist Visits Can Reduce Diabetic Foot Amputations By 50%, According To Study

Posted by on Monday, June 17th, 2013

Often, discussions of diabetes and foot health go hand in hand. Diabetes inflicts damage upon a person’s blood vessels and nerves, especially if blood sugar is poorly managed. Nerve damage and reduced circulation in the feet can make it very difficult to tell if there is an injury. Slow wound healing can turn an ordinary blister or cut into a festering ulcer. For this reason, diabetic foot amputations are all too common.

“Diabetes is currently the leading cause of non-traumatic amputations,” reports Dr. Ryan Minara of The Center of Podiatric Care and Sports Medicine. “Regular visits to your podiatrist will help identify potential problems before they can become limb threatening.  Limb salvage is an integral part of podiatric services.”