Heel pain is a very common problem. According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, heel pain is the most common foot complaint in the U.S. Due to a combination of factors like spending a lot of time on the feet, wearing shoes with inadequate foot and ankle support, family history and foot type and shape, a majority of adults will experience heel pain at some point in time. While a little foot pain and discomfort from time to time is typically normal, ongoing heel pain can be a sign of an injury or condition like plantar fasciitis. Dr. John Murphy, a podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD, treats a range of heel and ankle conditions and injuries at Maryland Podiatry Center.
Foot and Ankle Pain and Injury Treatment in Ellicott City, MD
There are several underlying causes for heel pain, the most common being plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. Other possible causes of persistent heel pain include:
- Stress fracture
- Bone spurs
- Tendon rupture
- Peripheral neuropathy
Heel pain can affect the bottom or back of the heel, depending on the cause. Plantar fasciitis pain, which results from inflammation and strain to the plantar fascia, the large band of tissue that stretches from the heel to the base of the toes, develops on the bottom of the heel. If you strain or injure your Achilles tendon, you will feel the pain at the back of the heel.
When to See a Podiatrist for Your Heel Pain
Schedule an appointment for a foot exam if your pain lasts more than a few days, or if you are experiencing additional symptoms like stiffness, swelling, difficulty flexing, bending, or putting pressure on your foot, numbness, tingling, or signs of infection like a fever. Don't wait to see a foot doctor if the pain results from an accident, sports injury, or trauma.
Treatment options will depend on the cause and severity of your heel pain, but can range from conservative treatment like rest, physical therapy, and supportive inserts like orthotics, to medication, EPAT Shockwave Therapy or surgery in cases of severe problems.
Podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD
For more information on the causes and treatment options for heel pain and other foot and ankle disorders, contact Maryland Podiatry Center by calling (410) 992-8504 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Murphy today.
Bunions are a condition of the foot in which a bony protrusion forms on the side of the foot just below the big toe. Bunions can cause chronic pain and discomfort. They will not go away on their own, but treatments are available for treating bunion symptoms. A podiatrist can discuss different treatment options with you and make a treatment recommendation based on your symptoms. At Maryland Podiatry Center, Dr. John Murphy is your podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD, for the treatment of bunion symptoms.
What are Bunions?
Bunions are bony protrusions on the side of the foot near the big toe. Bunions occur when the toe joint moves out of place, which can occur as the result of wearing tight fitting shoes, heredity, or an injury. Once bunions form, they can become further irritated due to friction caused by the shoes rubbing against the bunions, which can lead to chronic pain and discomfort. Bunions do not heal on their own, but the symptoms associated with bunions are treatable. Additionally, bunions can be surgically removed by a podiatrist, if needed.
Several options are available for treating the pain and discomfort of bunions, including the use of protective padding inside footwear to cushion the bunion area and minimize friction. Other treatment options include realignment of the toe joint and surgical removal of the bunions. Your Ellicott City podiatrist can evaluate your condition and recommend an appropriate option for treating your bunion symptoms. Treatments for bunions and their symptoms include:
- Wearing less constricting and roomier footwear to minimize friction and rubbing
- Inserting protective padding inside footwear to cushion against friction and rubbing
- Using orthotic shoe insert to correct foot positioning when standing and walking
- Performing exercises to improve joint function and prevent stiffness
- Wearing splints at night to realign the toe joint
- Removing corns and calluses on the feet
- Surgically removing the bunions
You do not have to live with the pain and discomfort of bunions. A podiatrist can help with your bunion symptoms. For treatment of your bunions, schedule a consultation with Dr. Murphy, your podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD, by calling Maryland Podiatry Center at (410) 992-8504.
Have you ever experienced an ankle sprain?
Ankle sprains are painful. They can be debilitating and lead to severe foot issues if not addressed as soon as possible. If you've experienced prolonged ankle pain, you'll need to talk to your Ellicott City, MD, podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy for help.
More About Ankle Sprains
Ankle sprains aren't just because you lost your balance. It can be a result of playing sports or walking and/or running on uneven surfaces.
Ankle sprains are one of the most common foot injuries. They are usually accompanied by: swelling, severe pain, bruising, ankle instability, tenderness, limping and limited range of motion
Bone fractures are sometimes confused with ankle sprains. This is extremely important to prevent severe long-term repercussions. Your Ellicott City doctor can properly diagnose an ankle sprain. Dr. Murphy uses a physical examination and an x-ray to examine your ankle and detect the exact problem.
Causes of Ankle Sprains
There are several things that lead to ankle sprains, a few include losing your balance while walking, which may result in pain, your ankle twists inward due to an unexpected movement, and/or a tear or stretch in one or more of your ligaments.
How to Treat a Sprained Ankle
Rehabilitating your ankle after you can stand on it is necessary. Your doctor will provide you with certain exercises to strengthen your: flexibility, muscles, ligaments, coordination and balance.
Treating your sprained ankle properly will increase the rate of your recovery. All you need to remember is RICE: rest, ice, compress, and elevate your ankles.
In addition to RICE, avoid overexerting your ankle. Walking, jogging, running, and other activities will come back after your rehabilitation and recovery process.
Your doctor may also provide certain medications like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Need a consultation?
For more information on how to deal with sprained ankles, just call your Ellicott City, MD, podiatrists, Dr. John Murphy, today at (410) 992-8504.
Learn more about this foot deformity and how to prevent the problem from getting worse.
Do you notice that your feet have started to take on a new shape, more specifically, your toes? Over time, all the abuse we put on our feet can truly take its toll if we aren’t careful. If you want to keep your feet healthy, our Ellicott City, MD, podiatrist, Dr. John Murphy, is here to tell you more about hammertoes and why they happen.
What is a hammertoe?
Even though the name alone might make you picture a big hammer-shaped toe, a hammertoe is a deformity that causes one or more toes to bend downward at the middle joint. In more severe cases, these toes can become so bent and fixed in place that they may even start to look claw-like. While this condition may sound serious it is entirely preventable if you take the right measures.
Why do hammertoes occur?
A hammertoe won’t just occur on its own. Some factors have to take place to predispose one or more toes to this deformity. Some risk factors include:
- Arthritis in the feet
- Extremely high arches
- An injury to the toe
- Weak tendons or ligaments in the foot
- Wearing poorly fitted shoes
One of the major culprits of hammertoes are poorly fitted shoes. If you wear shoes that bunch up toes, put pressure on the toes or are generally too small then you are putting your feet at risk for developing hammertoes. Wearing high heels and shoes with pointed toes can also leave women prone to this foot deformity.
How is a hammertoe treated?
The treatment plan our Ellicott City foot doctor offers will really depend on the severity of your hammertoe. If your condition and its symptoms are only mild then more conservative measures such as over-the-counter pain relievers, applying protective padding to the toe when wearing shoes, wearing appropriate shoes and certain stretching exercises can often alleviate pain and discomfort.
However, once a hammertoe becomes rigid (fixed in place) the only way to repair the toe is through surgery. Surgery is only necessary when the hammertoe is severe enough that the toe doesn’t move. During surgery, the toe is realigned and any deformed bone is removed.
Are you dealing with a hammertoe? Want to talk to us about ways to ease hammertoe pain and other symptoms? Then call Maryland Podiatry Center in Ellicott City, MD, today. We are here to help you.
“Orthotic“ means “to straighten or align” in Greek, but when it comes to your feet, these devices can do so much more. Dr. John Murphy, your podiatrist in Ellicott City, MD, has the experience and training necessary to determine if you need an orthosis to help with your foot or ankle issue. The right orthotic device can make a big difference and your mobility and your comfort, so read on to learn more about orthotics and their benefits here!
What are orthotics?
Orthotics deals with using devices like braces or shoe inserts to correct problems with the feet and ankles; orthoses are the devices themselves. These can be purchased over the counter or can be custom-made for you; the severity and nature of your specific problem will determine if you need a prescription from your Ellicott City podiatrist. Custom-fitted orthotics typically last several years before needing repair or replacement.
Why do I need orthotics?
There are many reasons why a person would need to wear an orthotic device. Some medical conditions, such as multiple sclerosis or spina bifida, can affect mobility in such a way that moving around is very difficult without the help of a brace or other type of supportive orthosis. Some people naturally have anatomy, such as fallen arches, a shorter leg, or club foot, that needs correction; orthotics can help with this too.
Working with your Ellicott City podiatrist is the key to finding the correct and properly fitting orthosis for you, so if you’re having mobility issues, contact Maryland Podiatry Center today to set up a consultation. We want to help you get on your feet in the new year and for many years to come!
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