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Stephan J. LaPointe, DPM, PhD, FACFAS

August 2022

Tuesday, 30 August 2022 00:00

Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Rupture

The Achilles tendon plays an integral role in the functioning of the feet. The tendon essentially connects the calf muscle to the heel bone, facilitating movement of all kinds. Since this tendon is so important, suffering an Achilles tendon injury is nothing to take lightly. An Achilles tendon rupture occurs in an individual when the tendon is stretched or torn. Typically, the tendon can stretch or tear when a person is running and they accelerate their pace too quickly. The symptoms that an individual might feel after suffering from an Achilles tendon rupture can vary. Generally speaking, however, an individual with this tendon rupture is likely to feel pain that comes in sharp, sudden bursts. This pain is typically felt in the ankle or calf. Additionally, if you are suffering from an Achilles tendon rupture, you might sense a feeling of swelling where the Achilles tendon is located, between the heel bone and the calf. Lastly, another common symptom of an Achilles tendon rupture is experiencing discomfort and difficulty when moving the feet. Specifically, walking and moving the toes can be particularly difficult. If you suspect that you have ruptured your Achilles tendon, contact your podiatrist immediately.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, 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.

What Is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

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.

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 23 August 2022 00:00

Stretching the Toes

The benefits of stretching one’s feet are plentiful as are the toes. Someone serious about protecting the overall health of their feet can perform several different toe stretches to not only increase the strength of their toes but to improve mobility and agility. These benefits can be particularly helpful for individuals who are prone to falling. The first toe stretch that you might consider performing as part of a regular foot stretching routine is known as the big toe pull. You can perform this stretch by getting in a seated position and wrapping a belt or towel around the big toe. Extend the lower leg off the ground and pull the belt towards you as you repeatedly push the big toe against the belt. The big toe should be working against your pulling motion of the belt. This should be performed on one foot at a time. You might also choose to perform the doming stretch. This involves sitting on the ground while your feet are flat on the floor in front of you. You then will try to grab the floor with your toes, being sure that you are not simply curling the toes inward. You can then hold this position for five seconds or so. Stretching the toes is undoubtedly important, just as it is to remember to listen to your body throughout the exercises and to stretch gently. If you want to learn more about the benefits of stretching your feet, contact a podiatrist.

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Being the backbone of the body, the feet carry your entire weight and can easily become overexerted, causing cramps and pain. As with any body part, stretching your feet can serve many benefits. From increasing flexibility to even providing some pain relief, be sure to give your feet a stretch from time to time. This is especially important for athletes or anyone performing aerobic exercises, but anyone experiencing foot pain or is on their feet constantly should also engage in this practice.

Great ways to stretch your feet:

  • Crossing one leg over the others and carefully pull your toes back. Do 10-20 repetitions and repeat the process for each foot
  • Face a wall with your arms out and hands flat against the wall. Step back with one foot and keep it flat on the floor while moving the other leg forward. Lean towards the wall until you feel a stretch. Hold for 30 seconds and perform 10 repetitions for each foot
  • Be sure not to overextend or push your limbs too hard or you could risk pulling or straining your muscle

Individuals who tend to their feet by regular stretching every day should be able to minimize foot pain and prevent new problems from arising.

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.

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Published in Blog
Tuesday, 16 August 2022 00:00

Babies Born With Foot Problems

A congenital foot problem is one affecting the feet, toes, or ankles of newborns. Such problems include clubfoot, vertical talus, tarsal coalition, polydactyly, macrodactyly, and cleft foot. These afflictions can have various causes, but some are genetically based on someone in the family having a gene causing the condition. Others can simply be an anomaly. A few of these conditions are described here. Clubfoot is when the tendons of the foot shorten, the bones are of an unusual shape, and the Achilles tendon is tight, causing the foot to point inward and downward. The soles of the feet might also face each other. This condition typically affects both feet. If not treated, a child will walk on the sides of their feet and ankles. Polydactyly is when the child has more than five toes on one or both feet. Usually, a nubbin or small lump of tissue without a bone or joint will be present. Macrodactyly is when the toes are abnormally large due to the overgrowth of the underlying bone or soft tissue. Having this condition makes it harder for a child to use the affected foot in all activities. Cleft foot is rare and occurs when the foot is missing toes, a V-shaped cleft, or other anatomical differences. The main issues are whether a cleft foot can fit into a shoe, as well as the shape and appearance of the foot. If you have a child born with a congenital foot problem, consult with a podiatrist to see if any treatments or surgery is recommended to help your child continue life most comfortably.

Congenital foot problems require immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, 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.

Congenital foot problems are deformities affecting the feet, toes, and/or ankles that children are born with. Some of these conditions have a genetic cause while others just happen. Some specific foot ailments that children may be born with include clubfeet, polydactyly/macrodactyly, and cleft foot. There are several other foot anomalies that can occur congenitally. What all of these conditions have in common is that a child may experience difficulty walking or performing everyday activities, as well as trouble finding footwear that fits their foot deformity. Some of these conditions are more serious than others. Consulting with a podiatrist as early as possible will help in properly diagnosing a child’s foot condition while getting the necessary treatment underway.

What are Causes of Congenital Foot Problem?

A congenital foot problem is one that happens to a child at birth. These conditions can be caused by a genetic predisposition, developmental or positional abnormalities during gestation, or with no known cause.

What are Symptoms of Congenital Foot Problems?

Symptoms vary by the congenital condition. Symptoms may consist of the following:

  • Clubfoot, where tendons are shortened, bones are shaped differently, and the Achilles tendon is tight, causing the foot to point in and down. It is also possible for the soles of the feet to face each other.
  • Polydactyly, which usually consists of a nubbin or small lump of tissue without a bone, a toe that is partially formed but has no joints, or an extra toe.
  • Vertical talus, where the talus bone forms in the wrong position causing other bones in the foot to line up improperly, the front of the foot to point up, and the bottom of the foot to stiffen, with no arch, and to curve out.
  • Tarsal coalition, when there is an abnormal connection of two or more bones in the foot leading to severe, rigid flatfoot.
  • Cleft foot, where there are missing toes, a V-shaped cleft, and other anatomical differences.
  • Macrodactyly, when the toes are abnormally large due to overgrowth of the underlying bone or soft tissue.

Treatment and Prevention

While there is nothing one can do to prevent congenital foot problems, raising awareness and receiving neonatal screenings are important. Early detection by taking your child to a podiatrist leads to the best outcome possible.

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.

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Published in Blog
Sunday, 14 August 2022 00:00

It's Time for Beautiful Feet

You don't need an excuse to have beautiful nails. Step outside without worrying about the appearance of your feet.

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 09 August 2022 00:00

Who Is Prone to Getting Sever’s Disease?

There is a growth plate in the heels of all feet, and it may become inflamed during a growth spurt in teenagers who frequently participate in running and jumping activities. The point of inflammation is where the Achilles tendon attaches to the back of the heel bone. This is known as Sever’s disease and it can cause uncomfortable heel pain. In some cases, an X-ray is necessary to show any irregularities of the heel bone. The pain may be more severe in the morning after arising and the heel may be tender and swollen. It is beneficial to temporarily stop the activity that caused the pain and orthotics may be prescribed to help the heel feel better. Some patients need to wear a cast as this can help to accelerate the healing process. If your child has heel pain and you suspect it may be Sever’s disease, please schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition. 

Sever's disease often occurs in children and teens. If your child is experiencing foot or ankle pain, see Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor can treat your child’s foot and ankle needs.

Sever’s Disease

Sever’s disease is also known as calcaneal apophysitis, which is a medical condition that causes heel pain I none or both feet. The disease is known to affect children between the ages of 8 and 14.

Sever’s disease occurs when part of the child’s heel known as the growth plate (calcaneal epiphysis) is attached to the Achilles tendon. This area can suffer injury when the muscles and tendons of the growing foot do not keep pace with bone growth. Therefore, the constant pain which one experiences at the back of the heel will make the child unable to put any weight on the heel. The child is then forced to walk on their toes.

Symptoms

Acute pain – Pain associated with Sever’s disease is usually felt in the heel when the child engages in physical activity such as walking, jumping and or running.

Highly active – Children who are very active are among the most susceptible in experiencing Sever’s disease, because of the stress and tension placed on their feet.

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 and ankle injuries.

Read more about Sever's Disease
Published in Blog
Tuesday, 02 August 2022 00:00

Why Your Feet May Ache at Night

About 20 percent of people complain about foot pain at night, especially women, people over 50, and those who are overweight. Among the many possible causes are wearing high heels, standing for long periods at work, and nerve damage. Cramps and spasms may be the result of muscle fatigue, sitting for long periods, or wearing tight shoes. Chemical changes in the body during pregnancy can also cause cramping. A number of foot-related conditions may also result in nighttime foot pain. Among them are Morton’s neuroma, plantar fasciitis, fibromyalgia, and peripheral neuropathy. Diabetes can also be a major source of foot pain, as reduced blood circulation can cause muscle pain in the feet. The first and easiest remedy for recurring foot pain is to check your footwear. Find shoes that cushion the feet and offer ample room for the toes. There are a number of exercises, as well as certain medications, that can help reduce foot pain. If your nighttime foot pain worsens, please consult a podiatrist as soon as possible. They can conduct a complete exam to determine the cause and offer the appropriate treatment plan.

Foot Pain

Foot pain can be extremely painful and debilitating. If you have a foot pain, consult with Dr. Stephan J. LaPointe from Georgia Foot & Ankle Specialists . Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Causes

Foot pain is a very broad condition that could be caused by one or more ailments. The most common include:

  • Bunions
  • Hammertoes
  • Plantar Fasciitis
  • Bone Spurs
  • Corns
  • Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Ingrown Toenails
  • Arthritis (such as Gout, Rheumatoid, and Osteoarthritis)
  • Flat Feet
  • Injury (from stress fractures, broken toe, foot, ankle, Achilles tendon ruptures, and sprains)
  • And more

Diagnosis

To figure out the cause of foot pain, podiatrists utilize several different methods. This can range from simple visual inspections and sensation tests to X-rays and MRI scans. Prior medical history, family medical history, and any recent physical traumatic events will all be taken into consideration for a proper diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment depends upon the cause of the foot pain. Whether it is resting, staying off the foot, or having surgery; podiatrists have a number of treatment options available for foot pain.

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 Foot Pain
Published in Blog
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