Posts for: May, 2017

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
May 25, 2017
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To beat the increasing heat as summer approaches, you decide to move your exercise routine indoors. You start working out on the treadmill but it doesn’t seem very challenging—until you discover the incline programs. You increase the slope and the amount of time you’re walking until you really feel like you’re burning calories. The next day, however, when you get out of bed, you can hardly walk. The area in the back of your lower leg between your heel and your calf is so sore and stiff. If this or a similar scenario sounds familiar, chances are you’ve aggravated your Achilles tendon, a condition patients frequently bring to us at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care.

Inflaming the Tendon

Sudden increase in the intensity or duration of your exercise program or starting a sport or fitness routine too quickly after a period of inactivity are common causes of Achilles tendonitis but there are other causes of this disorder too. The condition of overpronation or flat feet puts excess pressure on the Achilles tendon. In addition, certain gait abnormalities may inflame the Achilles tendon since it is the band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the calf muscle and is instrumental in raising your heel off the ground when you walk.

Treatment and Prevention

Our foot and ankle doctors, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, will start by examining your foot and ankle and assessing the condition of the Achilles tendon and its range of motion. X-rays or other digital imaging studies may be ordered to help confirm a diagnosis or rule out other causes of pain in this area.

There are several ways to help relieve the symptoms of Achilles tendonitis. First, you will need to stop whatever activity is causing the inflammation and give the tendon a rest. If you are experiencing significant pain, the foot doctor may recommend that you ice the area or take a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen. Night splints, custom orthotics and physical therapy are all possible treatment options depending on the cause and severity of your symptoms.

You can help reduce the risk of future episodes of Achilles tendonitis by taking the time to stretch your calf muscles before and after exercising or physical work. Wearing properly fitted shoes that are designed for the activity or sport you are participating in will also help.

If you are experiencing stiffness, tenderness or pain in your Achilles tendon, contact us to make an appointment at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office by calling: 732-662-3050. 

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
May 18, 2017
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Melanoma is on the rise. According to the CDC, the incidence of this form of skin cancer has more than doubled over the last 3 decades. Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. It is the leading cause of cancer death in women ages 25-30 and the second leading cause of cancer death in women ages 15-29. Despite these sobering statistics, however, melanoma is highly treatable in its early stages. That’s why we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want to share some important information on how to protect yourself and your family during Melanoma Awareness Month.

Be Proactive in Protecting Your Skin

It’s estimated that 90% of melanomas are caused by exposure to UV light and sunlight. To help prevent melanomas:

  • Do not use tanning beds. They increase your risk of melanoma by 75%!
  • Wear sunscreen daily. Choose one with an SPF of 30 or higher and protects against UVA and UVB rays. Reapply often, especially after swimming or when you are near reflective surfaces such as snow, water or sand. Don’t forget to apply to the bottoms of feet as well as the tops when you are spending the day at the beach, lake or pool.
  • Be vigilant about reapplying children’s sunscreen. Even one bad sunburn during childhood can significantly increase your risk for melanoma later in life.
  • Avoid outside activities during the midday hours when the sun is at its hottest. Encourage your children’s coaches not to schedule practice in the middle of the day.

It’s essential that you get in the habit of checking the skin on your feet regularly. Oftentimes melanomas on the feet are not diagnosed until late stage just because patients are not usually looking at the skin on their feet. If you notice any moles, growths or freckles that appear to be getting thicker or larger, or that have the following characteristics: irregular borders, asymmetric shape, multi-colored or a diameter bigger than a pencil eraser bring them to the attention of our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah. Don’t delay. Contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
May 12, 2017
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You may not view mowing your lawn as hazardous to your feet but believe it or not, the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission estimates that over 37,000 injuries from power mowers occur each year. The grass has definitely greened up on our New Jersey lawns and so we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want to remind patients of these important tips for preventing lawn mower accidents:

  1. Allow your lawn time to dry after a rain storm before mowing. The number one cause of foot injuries from power mowers is losing control of the mower on slippery wet grass.
  2. Choose heavy shoes or work boots for mowing. With blades whirling at 3,000 revolutions per minute, sneakers will not provide any protection.
  3. No matter how much they beg you, never give children a ride on a running mower. The two age groups most likely to be injured in lawn mower accidents are children under the age of 14 and adults over 44. It’s also a good idea to make it a rule that children don’t come on the lawn at all while you are mowing.
  4. Keep the bag for clippings attached to your mower all through the season. This will catch debris that might otherwise fly up and hit you or someone nearby.
  5. For slope mowing, go from side to side, not up and down.

If you do sustain an injury when mowing your lawn, treat it promptly and follow up with one of our board certified foot and ankle surgeons, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office. Due to the dirt on the blades of a mower even a minor cut has a high risk of becoming infected. More serious injuries that have been treated in the emergency room should be checked by the foot doctor to ensure proper rehabilitation and full recovery. Contact us for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.


By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
May 03, 2017
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Did you know that nearly 53 million adults and 300,000 children in America have arthritis? In honor of National Arthritis Awareness Month we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care want to offer some important information about something that can help reduce the pain and stiffness of arthritic joints and increase flexibility: walking.

Arthritis is a term that actually refers to over 100 types of joint inflammation diseases. Each of your feet has 33 joints—a good reason to learn how to protect them! When joints become inflamed, they hurt and can be stiff and difficult to move. Studies have proven that exercise is the most effective non-medicine treatment for arthritis.

What’s Good About Walking?

Walking is one of the easiest exercises to do. In addition to helping relieve arthritis symptoms walking is good for your heart and lungs and can help reduce stress and improve mood. It can be done almost anywhere, alone or with a group. And, it requires hardly any special gear, except a good pair of walking shoes.

Tips for Choosing Walking Shoes

This one piece of equipment—your shoes—should be carefully chosen. Improperly fitting shoes or designs that don’t accommodate your particular foot shape or conditions can harm your feet and negate the exercise benefits. A consultation with our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah can alert you to any particular concerns you need to be aware of when purchasing walking shoes. Some good tips to know are:

  • Have your feet measured professionally. In most people, one foot is slightly larger than the other—buy shoes to fit the bigger foot.
  • Shop for walking shoes at the end of the day. That’s when your feet are their most swollen and largest.
  • Try to wear the same type of socks you would wear when you are walking to ensure the best fit.
  • Be sure there is a half inch of wiggle room between your longest toe and the front of the shoe.
  • Make sure the heel fits well in the shoe and is not slipping out when you walk.
  • Take your time and walk around the store with both shoes on to be sure there are not areas that rub or pinch—shoes should feel good from the moment you leave the store.

If you have more questions about arthritis in your feet and ankles and whether walking is a good plan for you, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.