If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right.Switch to Accessible Site
Stephan J. LaPointe, DPM, PhD, FACFAS

January 2022

Tuesday, 25 January 2022 00:00

Bursitis: A Real Pain in the Heel

There are many causes of heel pain, including bursitis. The retrocalcaneal bursa is a fluid-filled sac located between the heel bone and the Achilles tendon. It cushions and lubricates the tendon as it slides over the heel bone, while acting as a shock absorber during walking and other movements. Excessive walking, running, jumping or other stress inducing activities placed upon the ankle may cause this bursa to become swollen, irritated, and inflamed. The skin at the back of the heel may be warm or red. The affected area may also become very sensitive to the touch, and painful during physical activity or when standing on your toes. If you feel this type of pain at the back of your heel that does not improve with rest, it is in your best interest to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist. They will perform a physical examination and may recommend certain conservative treatments such as icing, anti-inflammatory medication, orthotics or heel wedges to reduce stress on the heel, ultrasound and/or physical therapy, or possibly even steroid injections if other methods do not work.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe of Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Rome, GA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain
Published in Blog
Tuesday, 18 January 2022 00:00

What Can Cause Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. It occurs when the plantar fascia, the band of tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot and connects the heel to the toes, becomes inflamed or strained. The plantar fascia also supports the arch of the foot. Among the potential causes for plantar fasciitis are a tight Achilles tendon, wearing shoes that don’t fit right, suddenly increasing your exercise load, or flat feet. Patients who are obese or have gained weight, and long-distance runners are at a higher risk for plantar fasciitis because there is extra stress and weight on the feet. Patients with heel pain would be wise to consult with a podiatrist who can find its source and offer a proper treatment method.

Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition that is often caused by a strain injury. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What Is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is one of the most common causes of heel pain. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to the front of your foot. When this ligament becomes inflamed, plantar fasciitis is the result. If you have plantar fasciitis you will have a stabbing pain that usually occurs with your first steps in the morning. As the day progresses and you walk around more, this pain will start to disappear, but it will return after long periods of standing or sitting.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Having high arches in your feet
  • Other foot issues such as flat feet
  • Pregnancy (due to the sudden weight gain)
  • Being on your feet very often

There are some risk factors that may make you more likely to develop plantar fasciitis compared to others. The condition most commonly affects adults between the ages of 40 and 60. It also tends to affect people who are obese because the extra pounds result in extra stress being placed on the plantar fascia.

Prevention

  • Take good care of your feet – Wear shoes that have good arch support and heel cushioning.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • If you are a runner, alternate running with other sports that won’t cause heel pain

There are a variety of treatment options available for plantar fasciitis along with the pain that accompanies it. Additionally, physical therapy is a very important component in the treatment process. It is important that you meet with your podiatrist to determine which treatment option is best for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Rome, GA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
Published in Blog
Saturday, 15 January 2022 00:00

Reminder: When Was the Last Time...?

Custom orthotics, or shoe inserts, should be periodically replaced. Orthotics must fit properly to give you the best results. Protect your feet and ankles!

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 11 January 2022 00:00

The Importance of Diagnosing an Ankle Sprain

The bones in the ankle are connected by a variety of ligaments. Ankle sprains occur when these ligaments become either overstretched or torn, usually because the ankle is twisted. Mild ankle sprains mean that the ankle is tender and swollen, but more severe ankle sprains can make the ankle unstable and unable to support any weight. Patients who believe they may have sprained an ankle would be wise to consult with a podiatrist, because the symptoms of an ankle sprain are similar to those of a broken ankle, and an x-ray may be necessary. Recurring or severe sprains can also cause long-term weakness and joint pain. Upon the diagnosis of an ankle sprain (or fracture), a podiatrist will be able to provide a treatment plan for the injury.   

Although ankle sprains are common, they aren’t always minor injuries. If you need your ankle injury looked at, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

How Does an Ankle Sprain Occur?

Ankle sprains are the result of a tear in the ligaments within the ankle. These injuries may happen when you make a rapid shifting movement while your foot is planted. A less common way to sprain your ankle is when your ankle rolls inward while your foot turns outward.

What Are the Symptoms?

  • Pain at the sight of the tear
  • Bruising/Swelling
  • Ankle area is tender to touch
  • In severe cases, may hear/feel something tear
  • Skin discoloration

Preventing a Sprain

  • Wearing appropriate shoes for the occasion
  • Stretching before exercises and sports
  • Knowing your limits

Treatment of a Sprain

In many cases, the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevate) is used to treat ankle sprains. However, you should see a podiatrist to see which treatment option would work best with your injury. In severe cases, surgery may be required.

It is important to ask your doctor about rehab options after you receive treatment for your injury. Stretching, strength training, and balance exercises may help the ankle heal while also preventing further injury.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Rome, GA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Ankle Sprains
Published in Blog
Tuesday, 04 January 2022 00:00

Why Are My Toenails Yellow?

A common cause for yellow toenails is toenail fungus, however, it may be indicative of other conditions such as diabetes, psoriasis, yellow nail syndrome, lymphedema, lung problems, or jaundice. Fungal nail infections may also present symptoms such as thickened, hardened, and brittle nails, and the nail may even lift from the nail bed and emit a foul odor. Wearing shoes may cause pain or discomfort as well. This infection of the toenail (onychomycosis) is typically caused by the dermatophytes fungi in temperate climates, or non-dermatophytic moulds or candida in more tropical environments. Fungal nail infections may be brought on by exposure to the fungi that is living in public areas which are damp and warm such as communal showers, locker rooms, pools and gyms. Ill-fitting footwear, excessive sweating of the feet, brittle nails due to age, as well as injury, psoriasis, or other skin conditions may also increase a person’s risk for developing a fungal nail infection. Treating fungal nail infections is best handled by a podiatrist as the fungi are hearty and hard to kill entirely and promptly without professional care. If you have toenail fungus, make an appointment with a podiatrist. They may use prescription, oral and/or topical antifungal medications, laser therapy, as well as other treatments to help resolve your issue.

For more information about treatment, contact Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe of Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

Toenail fungus is a condition that affects many people and can be especially hard to get rid of. Fortunately, there are several methods to go about treating and avoiding it.

Antifungals & Deterrence

Oral antifungal medicine has been shown to be effective in many cases. It is important to consult with a podiatrist to determine the proper regiment for you, or potentially explore other options.

Applying foot powder on the feet and shoes helps keep the feet free of moisture and sweat.

Sandals or open toed shoes – Wearing these will allow air movement and help keep feet dry. They also expose your feet to light, which fungus cannot tolerate. Socks with moisture wicking material also help as well.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Rome, GA . We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Toenail Fungus
Published in Blog
Connect with us