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With summer coming to an end and fall taking its place, the weather is appearing to be more frigid and the sun seems to be dimming a lot earlier than we’re used to. Frigid temperature usually means wearing warmer clothes throughout the day and possibly more covers at night. What if I told you the latter could potentially be hindering how you sleep? Not in a bad way, but you could sleep better with less covers or by changing the way you position your legs and feet while still be covered up. There hasn’t been any real evidence conducted about this particular topic, but sleeping with your toes or your entire foot outside the covers could help improve the way you sleep at night.

According to Dr. Natalie Dautovitch, a leading researcher in chronopsychology, our hands and feet are unique such that they “contain vessels called arteriovenous anastomosis, which--coupled with the lack of hair on the bottoms of your feet--are perfectly designed to help dissipate body heat”. I think this could be viable information to tell our patients who do suffer from sleep deprivation and even those who feel fatigued in the morning. Along with sleeping with your foot (or feet) outside the blankets, it was also recommended that patients can also take a warm bath or drink a warm drink prior to going to bed. It’s said that the body feels more tired in colder environments so with getting out of a cold bath your body immediately starts to cool itself so you should feel sleepier.

Again, there is no evidence-based research to back any of this up but I feel it is definitely something we can try to employ before suggesting any kind of sleep aid. Your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ are not only here to help your feet better, but to make your overall quality of life better and we will try any and every way possible to accomplish that.

By Nrupa Shah

 

By Varun Gujral
September 17, 2014
Category: Medical Tattoos

Everyone knows tattoos are very popular among today’s generation and even past generations. You can put a tattoo virtually anywhere with the most popular of spots being the back, arm, calf, side of the rib cage and even the top of the foot. However, how does getting a tattoo on the bottom of your foot sound? Not too appealing, right, or no? No one would see it, so no one can judge you...only you know it’s there unless of course you show it to someone. And what people get tattooed on their body is a whole other topic we won’t discuss today. But for model Cara Delevinge, she took things to a different level--the bottom of her foot. What did she get a tattoo of you ask, “BACON...”.

As recently stated, tattoos are extremely popular and are usually “inked in” to resemble some form of art, but they can be used for medical reasons as well. Some examples are, but not limited to, for patients who suffer from chronic disease, as an aid in radiotherapy, during breast reconstruction after mastectomy, and for use in the military. Expanding on medical tattoos used for patients who suffer from chronic diseases, this would be an example of a patient who suffers from type 1 diabetes, patients we see quite commonly at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ. These tattoos are used to help medical responders determine the status of the patient if need be. The controversy, however, is that not all emergency personnel are trained to look all over the body for a tattoo. With that said, I think it’s very crucial for the patient if they do decide to get a medical tattoo to make it visible for anyone to see just in case an emergency situation does arise.

Medical tattoos are not as popular as your “artsy” tattoos but are definitely gaining interest especially because medical bracelets do cost quite a bit of money. However, if you are deciding to hang up the bracelet and get a medical tattoo, please make sure it’s in a place on the body where it is noticeable. My suggestion would be below the palm on the wrist, somewhere on the chest (in an emergency situation someone will most likely cut your shirt off), or on the side of your rib cage below your armpit. I don’t know, however, if it would be a good idea to put it on the bottom of your foot, as Cara Delevinge did unless of course you never wear shoes.

By Varun Gujral

By Nrupa Shah
September 03, 2014
Category: Diabetes

Firefighters are the type of people, in my opinion, who fear nothing. They are the type of people who put others before themselves in the midst of chaos to make sure everyone is safe. Of all the good firefighters do, though, sometimes they are the ones that need to be saved. Captain Nolan Meinardus of the Fort Smith Fire Dept. in Arkansas knows first-hand what it’s like to be the one being saved.

In March, he (31 years old) had his leg amputated--and it all started because of a minor cut on the bottom of his toe from him stepping on a toy car. If you haven’t guessed already, Capt. Nolan has diabetes. Patients with diabetes are at increased risk for ulcer formation and subsequent infection due to ulcers. This is why it is imperative that our diabetic patients get monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual check-ups (depending on the severity of their condition). The basis of a patient’s check-up is determined by a number of factors: 1) whether there is loss of protective sensation (LOPS); 2) does the patient present with neuropathy, a deformity and/or peripheral arterial disease (PAD); and 3) has the patient had a previous ulcer or amputation. These three categories are what are called a ‘Risk Categorization System’ and is used to determine how often a diabetic patient should be seen in the office.

Capt. Meinardus acquired the cut on his foot nine years ago and was battling with a severe ulcer/infection until March of this year when he decided to have his leg amputated. The choices were to amputate and live a healthy life or risk fighting an infection and potentially die. Firefighters do fear nothing, but nothing is more fearful than the thought of losing your family and friends especially from a little cut on the bottom of your foot. Diabetes, although very manageable, is a serious issue that needs to be cared for appropriately by the proper team of health care providers at proper time intervals.

If you think you may have one or more of these conditions, please do not hesitate to call your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ. Controlling your sugar and diet are two extremely important--if not, most important--aspects of managing diabetes, but patients often neglect to see their podiatrist for routine therapeutic foot care which may also be one of the most important aspects of diabetes management.

By Nrupa Shah

 

By Varun Gujral
August 27, 2014
Category: Orthotics

The leaves are changing color, the weather is getting cooler, and the days are getting shorter. This could mean only one thing...football season is here! This is the time of year where families get together every Sunday, put on their favorite team sweatshirt, and watch their team play. This is the time of year where family rivalries really come to surface. This is also the time of year, though, in which most of the sports-related injuries occur.

Three-time Pro-Bowler, John Beason, of the New York Giants sustained a ligament tear and fracture to his right big toe joint and is currently working with team physicians to get him back to where he needs to be for opening day. He is in the process of being fit for orthoses and proper cleats. Having the proper shoe gear and orthoses after a fracture is imperative, especially for professional athletes and even more so for football players. With that said, however, orthoses can be made for practically any purpose deemed necessary. Your local podiatrists at Affiliated Foot and Ankle Care located in Monroe and Edison, NJ prescribe many different types of orthoses for many different types of conditions from minor calluses and stiff toes to severe bunion deformities and flat feet. Although there are many conditions in which orthoses are prescribed, there are other factors that the clinician needs to consider prior to casting your foot. Age, weight, and activity level are of the most common that need to be considered before making the proper orthoses. They can be made to help your feet function better, to accommodate a painful neuroma or heel spur, and even aid in relieving pain from plantar fasciitis.

Orthoses are very beneficial and when made properly can relieve pain almost instantly although this may not always be the case. Making them is an art and may take a few modifications for the device to work/fit properly. But don’t let that deter you from wearing them because properly functioning; pain free feet are what we strive for. “You don’t realize how important your feet are...But it’s really everything, right?” These are the words of one of the Giants’ most prominent and important players, John Beason. I couldn’t agree with him more!

 By Varun Gujral

 

Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care is eager to have a positive impact in and around the communities that surrounds them.   “People do not think about foot and ankle pain until it interferes with their quality of life,” says Dr. Nrupa Shah.  “Our mission along with providing top quality foot and ankle care is to educate people on how to prevent pain in their lower extremities whenever possible.”  On Wednesday, September 10, 2014 from 10:00am – 11:00am at the South Plainfield Senior Center, located at 90 Maple Avenue in South Plainfield, Dr. Shah will be providing a presentation on preventative steps that can be taken to protect the foot and ankles, and how to be proactive should any issues arise.  Following this, Dr. Shah will be providing complimentary foot and ankle screenings for those who are interested from 11:00am – 12:00pm.  This educational event will cover the most basic of foot and ankle care such as cutting toenails or what creams are safe to use, to the more serious aspects of foot and ankle care such as those with diabetes or arthritis.  “The goal of this presentation and providing the foot and ankle screenings is to educate our community on how to avoid serious complication of the foot and ankle.  This free event will be taking place at the South Plainfield Senior Center on Wednesday, 9/10/14 from 10:00am – 12:00 pm.  If you plan to partake in the foot and ankle screenings, please RSVP by calling the South Plainfield Senior Center at (908) 754-1047 to make sure you reserve a space to be seen by the doctor.  For more information about Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, they can be contacted at (732) 662-3050 or by visiting http://www.footandanklenj.com/.  Their practice is located at 2163 Oak Tree Road, Suite 108 in Edison, NJ.





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