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Posts for: October, 2017

By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
October 27, 2017
Category: Proper Footwear
Tags: Untagged

At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care we see women every week who come to us with foot complaints that are being caused or made considerably worse by their shoe choice. Yes, you want to look professional and fashionable but it’s important not to choose short term fashion fame over long term foot pain. Below are foot faux pas to avoid:

“They make my feet look small.” That’s probably because the shoes themselves are too small for your feet! Some studies estimate that 9 out of 10 women are currently wearing shoes that are the incorrect size. Shoe size usually increases as you get older. Have your foot professionally measured before buying your next pair of shoes. Forcing feet into footwear that is too small can cause corns, blisters and deformities.

“High heels are so feminine.” They also greatly increase your risk of bunions, hammertoes and other toe deformities. High heels pack a double whammy: they force your toes to the front of your shoe and squeeze them together. Spending a lot of time in heels over 2 inches can start to actually cause your toes to move out of position. Pressing up against one another also increases the chances of getting an ingrown toenail.

“Once the cooler weather hits I love wearing my fashion boots every day!” The problem with many fashion boots is that they have little or no arch support. This can lead to heel pain due to the strain they put on your plantar fascia. Look for boots that have good arch support or be sure to alternate them with other shoes.

“I need to wear pumps for work but they hurt my heel.” You may be suffering from a condition known as Haglund’s Deformity or, as it is more commonly called, “Pump Bump.” A bony enlargement at the back of the heel falls right at the point where the back of your pump meets your foot. Constant rubbing and pressure irritate the area causing it to become inflamed and sore. Look for pumps that have a more flexible heel counter or try open back styles to take the pressure off. The foot doctor may also recommend protective padding for the back of your heel.

If you do find yourself experiencing chronic or severe foot pain, make an appointment at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office in New Jersey by calling: 732-662-3050 and be sure to wear or bring the shoes you wear most often.  Our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah will examine your feet and determine if your footwear is contributing to your condition. Our foot doctor can also suggest styles that will best suit your foot and accommodate any conditions you currently have.


By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
October 19, 2017
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With fall sports in full swing, we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care are beginning to see more young people in our office with calcaneal apophysitis or Sever’s Disease, as it is more commonly known. This condition typically affects children ages 8 to 14. It is an inflammation of the growth plate that is usually the result of excessive pounding on the heel in a sport such as basketball, track or soccer. Until the heel is fully developed, there is a vulnerable area at the back where new bone is continually forming. This spot can become inflamed with overuse.

Signs and Symptoms

Tracking down foot disorders in children, particularly those on the younger side can be challenging since they are not always able to articulate what specifically is bothering them. Some signs that your child may be suffering with Sever’s Disease include:

  • Pain, sometimes quite severe, in the back or bottom of the heel
  • Tenderness or pain when the sides of the heel are squeezed
  • Limping
  • Walking on tiptoes
  • Unusual gait or difficulty running and jumping
  • Complaints of tiredness
  • Lack of desire to participate in activities he or she normally enjoys

Treatment

If you notice any of these symptoms in your child or he or she complains of heel pain, it’s time to make an appointment at our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction, NJ office. Our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah will get a medical history and want to know about recent sports activities. An x-ray, other imaging studies or laboratory tests may be ordered in addition to the physical examination to rule out other more serious conditions. Once a diagnosis of calcaneal apophysitis is confirmed, the foot doctor will want your child to stop or greatly reduce any activities that aggravate the heel. There are a number of treatment options available, including:

  • Immobilization—a cast or boot may be necessary to keep the foot and ankle from moving so the heel can rest and heal
  • Physical therapy—stretching and other modalities may be prescribed to help reduce inflammation and heal damaged tissue
  • Orthotics—shoe inserts may be recommended to provide support and cushioning for the affected heel

The foot doctor will decide on the best treatment for your child. It is not uncommon for Sever’s Disease to recur until your child gets into his or her late teen years. If you suspect your child may be suffering from this condition, contact us for an appointment by calling: 732-662-3050.


By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
October 13, 2017
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Autumn is a beautiful time of the year and draws many people out onto our state’s hiking trails. At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care, however, we often see patients after hikes with injuries and foot conditions that are a result of what should have been an enjoyable afternoon of fitness and fun. In many instances, the problem could have been avoided. To promote hiking without pain, we would like to offer the following do’s and don’ts:

Do: choose a hiking trail that is appropriate for your ability and current level of fitness. Overuse injuries such as Achilles tendonitis are likely to occur when a patient “overdoes it” while exercising. Overstretching the tendon, particularly climbing uphill, is easy to do if you choose a strenuous trail when the most exercise you’ve had all summer is walking back and forth to the grill. Pay attention to whether the hike you are considering is a loop (circle) or if it’s in and out. If you have to turn back because of foot pain you need to know where you are on the trail and the fastest way back.

Don’t: hit the trail with a pre-existing foot condition without talking to a foot doctor first. Our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, will be able to advise you on the best type of hiking boots to get to accommodate your foot issue. In some cases, the foot doctor may prescribe an orthotic device to wear inside the book or padding to protect a vulnerable area.

Do: inspect your hiking boots before setting out. Check for signs of wear such as worn down heels or soles, loose stitching or any damaged spots. If you need to purchase a new pair of boots, visit an outdoor gear store and get professional advice on the best kind of boots for the type of terrain and level of hiking you plan to do.

Do: pack moleskin in your daypack. This self adhesive covering should be applied to any spot on your foot at the first sign of friction or irritation to head off the development of a blister.

Don’t: forget to make stops on your hike to drink water (which will help prevent swelling of your feet) and give your feet (and the rest of your body) a short rest. Listen to your feet—when they’ve had enough, call it a day!

For an appointment, contact our Monmouth Junction, Edison or Monroe  office in New Jersey by calling: 732-662-3050.


By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
October 05, 2017
Category: Proper Foot Care
Tags: Untagged

Arthritis and other conditions that cause inflammation of the joints can strike anywhere in the body but with 33 joints in each foot, pain and stiffness in them can have a large impact on your ability to stand, walk and carry on daily activities. At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah will examine your feet and most likely order x-rays and/or other imaging studies to determine the cause of joint discomfort. In addition to proper medical treatment for joint disorders, your diet can play a role in decreasing joint pain.

What Not to Eat

There are certain foods that can actually trigger an inflammatory response. Some to avoid include:

  • Sugar—excess sugar in the body can trigger pro-inflammatory responses in the brain. In addition to obvious sources of sugar (candy, cookies, cakes, etc.) be on the lookout for hidden harbingers: tomato sauce, salad dressings and low fat yogurts
  • Fried foods
  • Refined flour—found in products like cereal, pizza crust, white bread, bagels and pasta, this type of flour has had slow-digesting fiber and nutrients removed, meaning they break down quickly and basically turn to sugar in your body (see above!)
  • Dairy products (with the exception of yogurt, which can help fight inflammation)—these are allergens for many people and can trigger an inflammatory response in the body
  • Artificial sweeteners and additives
  • Processed foods

Foods that Fight Inflammation

Conversely, there are also foods that can help suppress or decrease inflammation in your joints. Try swapping some of these into your diet in place of the foods you are trying to eliminate:

  • Tomatoes
  • Green, leafy vegetables, such as spinach, collard greens and kale
  • Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and sardines
  • Certain fruits, including: strawberries, blueberries, cherries and oranges
  • Olive oil
  • Nuts (almonds and walnuts)

You may see a trend here: the foods that fight inflammation are healthy foods and those that aggravate it are ones we’re better off without. Maintaining a healthy diet will also help keep your weight down, which is another way to reduce joint pain.

To learn more about how to be proactive in caring for your feet, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction, office in New Jersey by calling: 732-662-3050.