By Nrupa Shah
December 17, 2014

Pregnant women endure a lot more hardship than men can probably imagine. The birthing process alone (from induction to final birth) tops any pain a male feels at any given time. But we also have to think about the nine months leading up to that. What kind of pain do women experience then? Do they experience pain? In actuality, they experience lots of pain mainly in the joints—feet, knees, hips, and back are the most common areas. But if we’re able to treat the feet and educate patients on proper footwear during pregnancy, the other painful joints have the potential to be pain-free as well. 37 year-old Grammy award singer, Shakira, was caught wearing high-heels at a proposed 8 months pregnant. This is not something your podiatrists at Affiliate Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ would condone by any means. Wearing the proper footwear during pregnancy is crucial to pain-free joints.

 Usually pregnant patients complain of a painful arch because the joints in their feet tend to compress and pronate causing their arches to collapse and that’s where the term “flat feet” comes in to context. If shoes alone do not fix the problem, patients can be casted for custom foot orthotics. These orthotics will bring the arch back to its original position which will in turn cause the lower leg to align itself properly with the remaining joints all doing the same as well.

Moral of this story—do not wear high heels when you’re pregnant. Women’s feet are already at a higher risk for pain and deformity when they’re pregnant and wearing high heels only increases that risk. Again, if you were told to buy new shoes give them a try for at least a month before deciding they work or not. Lastly, if shoes alone don’t work please do not hesitate to give our office a call so we can properly assess your pain and foot function and get you in the proper orthotics to get you walking pain-free again.

 By Nrupa Shah

There are many different types of athletes in the world--runners, swimmers, basketball and football players, ballerinas and the list goes on and on. But running can be incorporated into ANY sport; for the most part. Your every day runner may disagree by saying it is its own sport, but that’s for another discussion. Alan Webb, world record holder of the 1-mile run (at 3:46.91) recently stated that he is going to transition from track and field to triathlon running.

A triathlon competition consists of the athlete completing three tasks in succession of one another and it usually starts with a swim followed by cycling and is completed by a long-distance run. As podiatrists, we are highly concerned with the long-distance running. Any type of running over long periods of time always puts athletes at higher risk for such things as shin splints, ankle sprains, and even more commonly stress fractures. Stress fractures are seen mostly in the metatarsal bones of the foot. There are many things; however, the athlete can do to prevent any of these from occurring with the most important being proper training. It’s extremely important that an athlete gradually increases their training (or mileage) rather than starting off running a triathlon for their first part of training. Many athletes sadly do this and can sustain the aforementioned injuries. If any of these injuries have happened to you please do not hesitate to call your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ. Treatment of these conditions consists mainly of rest, ice, compression, and elevation. Sometimes athletes may need to be put in a walking boot for an extended period of time to make sure the fracture is healed completely. Very rarely will surgery be performed as these injuries prove to be fairly benign.

The first modern triathlon event was the Hawaiian Ironman Triathlon which consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike, and a marathon run of 26.219 miles. While Mr. Webb did not say in his interview which type of triathlon (sprint, intermediate, long, or ultra) he is planning on doing, I’m sure either of them will be extremely challenging.

By Varun Gujral

By Nrupa Shah
December 03, 2014
Category: Footwear

‘Tis the Season! It is always a great feeling reading about people helping the community--it’s an even better feeling when you’re the one doing it. Regardless, I truly don’t think it is done enough. There are many people out there who are less fortunate than most and they deserve to be cared for. And that is exactly what Andre McDonnell is doing. McDonnell is chief retail associate at Atrium clothing in New York. He founded a non-profit organization called “It’s From The Sole”. It’s astonishing what his foundation does--”We refurbish the sneaker, clean the sneaker, take the inner soles out, wash them...We go around New York City and give homeless people sneakers”, said McDonnell in an interview.

The quality of the shoes a person wears is extremely important in overall foot health; and that stems to how the foot works on a biomechanical level to making sure the foot is off-loaded or protected in the proper areas. It’s probably evident that homeless people lack the resources to obtain new shoes so they are at a higher risk of developing abnormal foot mechanics, possible ulcers which could eventually lead to infections. With that said, it’s crucial that our patients are in the correct shoe gear--especially our diabetic patients. So, the next time you visit your local podiatrist at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care in Monroe and Edison, NJ make sure you have them take a look at your shoes so they can tell you if you are wearing what you should be wearing.

McDonnell said in an interview, he once saw a homeless person without shoes near a park where he was playing basketball. McDonnell took his sneakers off and gave them to the homeless person, whom smiled at him and accepted his shoes. It’s gestures like these that need to happen more and all it takes is one person--I think McDonnell has started something big! To find out how to donate your sneakers or money, visit www.facebook.com/itsfromthesole for more information.

By Nrupa Shah

By Varun Gujral
November 26, 2014

We all know the catchphrase “Two steps forward, one step back”. Well, in Wang Fang’s case it’s the total opposite...”Two steps backward, one step forward. Wang Fang, a 30 year old waitress from Chongqing, China, was born with a rare condition that caused her feet to develop backwards. Interestingly enough, she claims that she walks normally and even runs faster than many of her friends (who were born with normal feet). It’s unclear what the disease is, but it appears she is not letting it slow her down.

What is known, however, is that her condition is the cause of abnormal development prior to birth. Our extremities (arms/hands and legs/feet) begin to develop soon after the 8th or 9th week of fetal development. During this time in development many things--though rare--can go wrong. The most common causes of abnormal limb formation are congenital (we are born with it), metabolic (something in our body doesn’t work properly), and idiopathic (unknown cause). How is something like this treated? Patients would have to be cast for special shoes and your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care of Monroe and Edison, NJ are just the people to call. We will exam your feet and prescribe the right orthotics to make the perfect-fitting shoe for whatever the case may be.

Although Wang Fang was born with both of her feet facing the opposite direction it hasn’t affected her life at all. She works as a waitress, walks normally, and runs faster than her friends. Life is about making the best of the situations we see troublesome, and that’s exactly what she’s doing...living life to the fullest.

 By Varun Gujral


By Nrupa Shah
November 20, 2014
Category: Diabetes

Diabetes is an extremely popular subject talked about amongst all healthcare professionals. But, even more so in the month of November. Why? November is American Diabetes Month (ADM) and despite how “popular” diabetes may be, many people are unaware ADM exists. With that said, there is a story circulating right now about singer Bret Michaels who was recently hospitalized six times in two weeks and had to have surgery on both of his kidneys which was secondary to his type 1 diabetes. Michaels was actually scheduled to perform in Campaign, IL earlier this month but because of the severe pain he was in, unfortunately he was unable to.

It’s extremely important to realize how complex diabetes is and what it’s capable of doing to the body. Diabetes is diagnosed by increased sugar in your blood and if the sugar stays elevated for long periods of time it can cause severe damage to many parts of your body. Most people know that diabetes causes your feet to feel numb and tingly but they are unaware that it can subsequently cause blindness and kidney damage; hence why Bret Michaels had to have surgery on his kidneys. Although these complications can arise, they are more likely to do so in patients who are not compliant with their medications. It is unknown how compliant Michaels is with his medications so this problem could have been persisting over a long period of time.

 It is extremely important to take your medication as prescribed by your physician. Likewise, it is also recommended that all diabetic patients see a podiatrist to get preventative foot care. If you have any questions about your diabetes and preventative foot care please do not hesitate to contact your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ today!

 By Nrupa Shah


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