If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right. Switch to Accessible Site
We are OPEN and follow CDC guidelines.

December 2021

Tuesday, 28 December 2021 00:00

Why Are My Toes Turning Blue?

If you notice that your toes look bluish in color, you may have a condition known as peripheral cyanosis. The main causes are a lack of blood reaching the toes, and lack of oxygen in the blood that does reach the toes. Normally, when blood is properly oxygenated it turns bright red. When oxygen levels are low, the blood turns a burgundy, or more bluish, color. However, if the toes are not receiving enough blood, even though it is fully oxygenated, the result is still a bluish color in the toes, and other body parts as well. The main causes of decreased oxygen are a blockage that prevents blood from reaching the extremities, or lack of pressure sufficient to allow the blood to reach the extremities. A fatty buildup in the blood vessels, known as peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a common factor in such blockages. If you notice that your toes appear to be bluish, it is suggested that you make an appointment with your podiatrist, who can offer a proper diagnosis and treatment options.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Dr. Michael A. Wood of Foot Health Institute. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lansing, and Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment of Poor Blood Circulation in the Feet
Tuesday, 21 December 2021 00:00

Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetic neuropathy is a type of nerve damage caused by diabetes. High blood sugar levels, combined with high levels of fats in the blood, can hurt the nerves in your body. The nerves of the lower legs and feet are often the first affected, leading to a condition known as peripheral neuropathy. It is said that between 1/3 and 1/2 of people with diabetes develop peripheral neuropathy, which can cause such symptoms as numbness, weakness, burning, tingling, and pain in the lower limbs. Peripheral neuropathy can also make wounds more likely to develop on the feet, as the loss of sensation makes it difficult to detect injuries in their early stages and treat them before they have progressed. If you have diabetes, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist for regular checkups. 

Neuropathy

Neuropathy can be a potentially serious condition, especially if it is left undiagnosed. If you have any concerns that you may be experiencing nerve loss in your feet, consult with Dr. Michael A. Wood from Foot Health Institute. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment for neuropathy.

What Is Neuropathy?

Neuropathy is a condition that leads to damage to the nerves in the body. Peripheral neuropathy, or neuropathy that affects your peripheral nervous system, usually occurs in the feet. Neuropathy can be triggered by a number of different causes. Such causes include diabetes, infections, cancers, disorders, and toxic substances.

Symptoms of Neuropathy Include:

  • Numbness
  • Sensation loss
  • Prickling and tingling sensations
  • Throbbing, freezing, burning pains
  • Muscle weakness

Those with diabetes are at serious risk due to being unable to feel an ulcer on their feet. Diabetics usually also suffer from poor blood circulation. This can lead to the wound not healing, infections occurring, and the limb may have to be amputated.

Treatment

To treat neuropathy in the foot, podiatrists will first diagnose the cause of the neuropathy. Figuring out the underlying cause of the neuropathy will allow the podiatrist to prescribe the best treatment, whether it be caused by diabetes, toxic substance exposure, infection, etc. If the nerve has not died, then it’s possible that sensation may be able to return to the foot.

Pain medication may be issued for pain. Electrical nerve stimulation can be used to stimulate nerves. If the neuropathy is caused from pressure on the nerves, then surgery may be necessary.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lansing, and Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Neuropathy
Tuesday, 14 December 2021 00:00

Remedies for Repairing Cracked Heels

Anyone with cracked heels, which affects around 20 percent of adults in the United States, knows how uncomfortable they can be. Fortunately, there are several simple home remedies that, if utilized regularly, can help improve the condition. Soak the feet for 20 minutes in soapy water, remove dry skin with a pumice stone or other abrasion device, dry the feet thoroughly, and then apply heavy moisturizing lotion to help restore the skin. It’s also a good idea to wear socks to help keep moisture in the heels. Cold and dry weather, especially during the winter months, is a common contributing factor of cracked heels. Other possible causes include obesity, wearing open-heeled sandals, and frequently standing on hard floors for long periods of time. Eczema, psoriasis and fungal infection can cause the heels to crack as well. If you are experiencing extreme discomfort from cracked or split heels, it would be wise to consult a podiatrist for treatment options. 

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Michael A. Wood from Foot Health Institute. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lansing, and Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Solutions for Cracked Heels
Thursday, 09 December 2021 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.

Tuesday, 07 December 2021 00:00

What Can I Do When a Wound Doesn’t Heal?

If you have a wound for more than 8 weeks and it still hasn’t healed, it may be considered to be chronic. Such an occurrence could be caused by poor circulation, diabetes, or a weak immune system. Open wounds on the lower leg are known as venous leg ulcers. These kinds of wounds may be medically treated by removing the dead or inflamed tissue, known as debridement. The wound itself can then be cleaned by a high-pressure water jet. A local anesthetic may be used as this treatment is said to be painful. Afterward, the wound should be covered with gauze or a similar dressing to keep it from becoming infected. Compression stockings may be prescribed to increase circulation. For more information on chronic wounds in the feet or ankle area, please consult a podiatrist.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with Dr. Michael A. Wood from Foot Health Institute. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Lansing, and Chicago, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care
Connect with us
Follow Foot Health Institute on Facebook Follow Foot Health Institute on Twitter Cgicago & Lansing, IL Podiatry Blog

Foot Health Institute Latest Podiatry Blog Posts