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Monday, 19 February 2018 00:00

Symptoms of a Broken Foot

There are many ways to break your foot, and we wouldn’t recommend any of them. Severe pain when walking, in addition to bruising, are common symptoms of a foot that has been fractured. If limping occurs and the foot is tender when touched, these may be additional signs of a break in the bone. Obvious symptoms may include a deformity of the foot, which may indicate a joint dislocation. When the structure of the bone has been damaged, an x-ray is generally used to determine the extent of the injury. Once diagnosed, the injury may be treated by wearing a boot to help eliminate weight that is placed on the foot. A consultation with a podiatrist is advised for a proper diagnosis and additional treatment options.

A broken foot requires immediate medical attention and treatment. If you need your feet checked, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor  can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Broken Foot Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

A broken foot is caused by one of the bones in the foot typically breaking when bended, crushed, or stretched beyond its natural capabilities. Usually the location of the fracture indicates how the break occurred, whether it was through an object, fall, or any other type of injury. 

Common Symptoms of Broken Feet:

  • Bruising
  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Blue in color
  • Numbness
  • Cold
  • Misshapen
  • Cuts
  • Deformities

Those that suspect they have a broken foot shoot seek urgent medical attention where a medical professional could diagnose the severity.

Treatment for broken bones varies depending on the cause, severity and location. Some will require the use of splints, casts or crutches while others could even involve surgery to repair the broken bones. Personal care includes the use of ice and keeping the foot stabilized and elevated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment for a Broken Foot
Monday, 12 February 2018 00:00

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

Severe pain is likely to be experienced if you have a broken toe, and it will typically heal within 6 weeks. The toe may be tender, bruised, and swollen, often resulting in difficulty in walking. The treatment for a broken or bruised toe is the same, despite the fact that many people have trouble differentiating between the two. Temporary relief may come from elevating the foot, which generally helps in reducing any pain or swelling associated with this condition. Additionally, choosing to wear shoes that give the toes ample room to move may aid in diminishing any discomfort that may be experienced. If the toe is bent at an unnatural angle indicating a severe break, a consultation with a podiatrist is suggested for ways to properly treat your broken toe.

A broken toe can be very painful and lead to complications if not properly fixed. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What to Know About a Broken Toe

Although most people try to avoid foot trauma such as banging, stubbing, or dropping heavy objects on their feet, the unfortunate fact is that it is a common occurrence. Given the fact that toes are positioned in front of the feet, they typically sustain the brunt of such trauma. When trauma occurs to a toe, the result can be a painful break (fracture).

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Throbbing pain
  • Swelling
  • Bruising on the skin and toenail
  • The inability to move the toe
  • Toe appears crooked or disfigured
  • Tingling or numbness in the toe

Generally, it is best to stay off of the injured toe with the affected foot elevated.

Severe toe fractures may be treated with a splint, cast, and in some cases, minor surgery. Due to its position and the pressure it endures with daily activity, future complications can occur if the big toe is not properly treated.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 05 February 2018 00:00

What is a Podiatrist?

The feet are the foundation of the body, and the health of your feet play an essential role in your overall well-being. Keeping the feet healthy is critical in maintaining an active lifestyle, so if foot ailments occur, it is advised to seek the medical attention of a podiatrist. These doctors specialize in treating all conditions concerning the foot, including injuries involving tendons and bones, issues caused by diabetes, and foot deformities. Other conditions that are typically treated by podiatrists are ingrown toenails, heel pain, and flat feet. When the disorder is diagnosed, proper treatment will be discussed for long term results, in addition to alleviating pain associated with the problem. Before your initial visit, you may want to comprise a list of concerns you have, as well as questions about the general health of your feet.

If you are experiencing pain in the feet or ankles, don’t join the stubborn majority refusing treatment. Feel free to contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is a Podiatrist?

Someone would seek the care of a podiatrist if they have suffered a foot injury or have common foot ailments such as heal spurs, bunions, arch problems, deformities, ingrown toenails, corns, foot and ankle problems, etc.

Podiatric Treatment

A podiatrist will treat the problematic areas of the feet, ankle or lower leg by prescribing the following:

  • Physical therapy
  • Drugs
  • Orthotic inserts or soles
  • Surgery on lower extremity fractures

A common podiatric procedure a podiatrist will use is a scanner or force plate which will allow the podiatrist to know the designs of orthotics. Patients are then told to follow a series of tasks to complete the treatment. The computer will scan the foot a see which areas show weight distribution and pressure points. The podiatrist will read the analysis and then determine which treatment plans are available.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What is a Podiatrist?
Monday, 29 January 2018 00:00

How to Prevent Corns

When the foot incurs abnormal pressure from wearing incorrect footwear, a corn may develop. A corn is a small area of thickened skin, usually appearing on the tops of the toes or the balls of the feet. These are typically referred to as hard corns, often producing redness, swelling, and pain. Soft corns are usually found between the toes, appearing white and having a rubbery texture. Both types of corns are produced by excessive friction, typically caused by wearing ill fitting shoes and from moisture accumulating between the toes. Many people will develop corns throughout their lives, and it is one of the most common foot ailments. It’s important to prevent corns from developing by being aware of specific areas of the foot that often endure pressure. If you stand for most of the day, it’s suggested to take ample time to find shoes that fit properly. Additionally, the skin will benefit significantly by being moisturized. Please consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and information on how painful corns can be removed.

If you have any concerns regarding your feet and ankles, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant of Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Corns: What are they? And how do you get rid of them?
Corns can be described as areas of the skin that have thickened to the point of becoming painful or irritating. They are often layers and layers of the skin that have become dry and rough, and are normally smaller than calluses.

Ways to Prevent Corns
There are many ways to get rid of painful corns such as wearing:

  • Well-fitting socks
  • Comfortable shoes that are not tight around your foot
  • Shoes that offer support

Treating Corns
Treatment of corns involves removing the dead skin that has built up in the specific area of the foot. Consult with Our doctor to determine the best treatment option for your case of corns.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Corns: What Are They, and How Do You Get Rid of Them

The Achilles tendon connects the calf muscles to the heel. When this tendon is injured, immediate attention is necessary to encourage proper healing. This injury typically occurs while participating in a sport involving running or jumping and may initially be felt due to a sharp pain in the back of the heel. Symptoms of this condition may include the inability to point and flex the foot, limping, and experiencing significant swelling and pain. Treatment may consist of applying ice packs to the affected area, and it’s advised to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Occasionally, the leg is put into a cast for proper healing. For severe tears to the Achilles tendon, surgery and a rehabilitation program may be necessary for a complete recovery.

Achilles tendon injuries need immediate attention to avoid future complications. If you have any concerns, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant of Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is the Achilles Tendon?

The Achilles tendon is a tendon that connects the lower leg muscles and calf to the heel of the foot. It is the strongest tendon in the human body and is essential for making movement possible. Because this tendon is such an integral part of the body, any injuries to it can create immense difficulties and should immediately be presented to a doctor.

What are the symptoms of an Achilles Tendon Injury?

There are various types of injuries that can affect the Achilles tendon. The two most common injuries are Achilles tendinitis and ruptures of the tendon.

Achilles Tendinitis Symptoms

  • Inflammation
  • Dull to severe pain
  • Increased blood flow to the tendon
  • Thickening of the tendon

Rupture Symptoms

  • Extreme pain and swelling in the foot
  • Total immobility

Treatment and Prevention

Achilles tendon injuries are diagnosed by a thorough physical evaluation, which can include an MRI. Treatment involves rest, physical therapy, and in some cases, surgery. However, various preventative measures can be taken to avoid these injuries, such as:

  • Thorough stretching of the tendon before and after exercise
  • Strengthening exercises like calf raises, squats, leg curls, leg extensions, leg raises, lunges, and leg presses

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic tools and technology to treat your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What are Achilles Tendon Injuries
Monday, 15 January 2018 00:00

Can Exercising Help My Feet?

Exercises for the feet can be extremely effective in relieving foot pain in addition to preventing possible injuries. Conditions that may benefit from exercise may be plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis. After applying consistent effort, the pain may ease in a few weeks, possibly resulting in much needed relief. An effective stretch for the plantar fascia is to sit while crossing one foot over the knee, pulling the toes back until you feel the muscle stretch. After holding this position for a few seconds, switch to the opposite side. Using a towel that’s wrapped around the ball of your feet while keeping the knees straight and pulling the toes toward the body can be beneficial in stretching the Achilles tendon. Holding this stretch for a few seconds will also stretch out the bottom of the feet. However, before performing any of these stretches speaking with a podiatrist is highly recommended.

Exercising your feet regularly with the proper foot wear is a great way to prevent injuries and build strength. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Exercise for Your Feet

Exercise for your feet can help you gain strength, mobility and flexibility in your feet. They say that strengthening your feet can be just as rewarding as strengthening another part of the body. Your feet are very important, and we often forget about them in our daily tasks. But it is because of our feet that are we able to get going and do what we need to. For those of us fortunate enough to not have any foot problems, it is an important gesture to take care of them to ensure good health in the long run.

Some foot health exercises can include ankle pumps, tip-toeing, toe rises, lifting off the floor doing reps and sets, and flexing the toes. It is best to speak with yOur doctor to determine an appropriate regimen for your needs. Everyone’s needs and bodies are different, and the activities required to maintain strength in the feet vary from individual to individual. 

Once you get into a routine of doing regular exercise, you may notice a difference in your feet and how strong they may become.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our office located Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Exercise for Your Feet
Monday, 08 January 2018 00:00

Causes of Hammertoe

Weakened muscles in the toe may cause the tendons to become shorter, enabling the middle joint in the toes to protrude. There may be several causes of this particular condition, referred to as hammertoe, including an inherited predisposition. Symptoms may include experiencing difficulty in walking or not being able to flex and point your toes. Wearing proper footwear is important, especially keeping the heels to 2 inches or less.  If the toes are not able to stretch, surgery may be an option. A consultation with a podiatrist is recommended for a proper diagnosis and the best treatment options.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Tuesday, 02 January 2018 00:00

What’s Causing My Heel Pain?

The heel is comprised of numerous tendons, ligaments, and fatty tissue. Common causes of pain in the heel may include possible stress fractures, bursitis, and obesity, and can typically be treated with ice packs, foot massages, and exercises designed to flex the foot. Probable diagnosis may include plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, and Sever’s disease. Refraining from activities that may have caused the pain not only reduces the stress on the heel, but will help in healing the tendons. This pain is commonly avoided by choosing shoes with laces for a firmer fit, discarding shoes with heels that are worn, and stretching the foot by warming up before a sports related activity. A consultation with a podiatrist is advised in properly diagnosing the cause of the pain, in addition to discovering the best treatment options available.

Many people suffer from bouts of heel pain. For more information, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant of Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Causes of Heel Pain

Heel pain is often associated with plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissues that extends along the bottom of the foot. A rip or tear in this ligament can cause inflammation of the tissue.

Achilles tendonitis is another cause of heel pain. Inflammation of the Achilles tendon will cause pain from fractures and muscle tearing. Lack of flexibility is also another symptom.

Heel spurs are another cause of pain. When the tissues of the plantar fascia undergo a great deal of stress, it can lead to ligament separation from the heel bone, causing heel spurs.

Why Might Heel Pain Occur?

  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes                  
  • Wearing non-supportive shoes
  • Weight change           
  • Excessive running

Treatments

Heel pain should be treated as soon as possible for immediate results. Keeping your feet in a stress-free environment will help. If you suffer from Achilles tendonitis or plantar fasciitis, applying ice will reduce the swelling. Stretching before an exercise like running will help the muscles. Using all these tips will help make heel pain a condition of the past.

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Heel Pain
Tuesday, 26 December 2017 00:00

How to Care for Feet Affected by Diabetes

A common ailment that many diabetics have are foot problems; managing blood glucose levels, however, may help to keep the feet healthy.  When nerve damage occurs in diabetics, it may cause pain and tingling, including possible numbness in the foot.  Serious infections may be the result of this and can possibly lead to gangrene.  It’s important to manage your diabetes; this may involve following a foot care plan.  It’s crucial to check your feet daily, which will enable you to notice problems before they get worse.  Some conditions to look for may be cuts, sores, or ingrown toenails. Washing your feet regularly will help you become aware of these issues.  Trimming the toenails straight across the toe with clippers can help prevent the skin from being cut and can keep the toenails healthy. Consult with a podiatrist for a proper diagnosis and to learn of the treatment options available for diabetic feet.

Diabetic foot care is important in preventing foot ailments such as ulcers. If you are suffering from diabetes or have any other concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. The condition can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, especially the feet. Because of this, taking care of your feet is essential if you have diabetes, and having a podiatrist help monitor your foot health is highly recommended.

The Importance of Caring for Your Feet

  • Routinely inspect your feet for bruises or sores.
  • Wear socks that fit your feet comfortably.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that provide adequate support.

Patients with diabetes should have their doctor monitor their blood levels, as blood sugar levels play such a huge role in diabetic care. Monitoring these levels on a regular basis is highly advised.

It is always best to inform your healthcare professional of any concerns you may have regarding your feet, especially for diabetic patients. Early treatment and routine foot examinations are keys to maintaining proper health, especially because severe complications can arise if proper treatment is not applied.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Diabetic Foot Care
Monday, 18 December 2017 00:00

Symptoms of Plantar Fasciitis

A gradual onset of pain in the heel, which feels worse in the morning, is a good indication that you may have plantar fasciitis. While resting, the plantar fascia often becomes shorter, and upon rising the pain will lessen as the tissues warm up from walking. Typically, plantar fasciitis affects the tendon under the foot that forms the arch. Additionally, tenderness on the inside of the heel or beneath the sole of the foot are common symptoms. Plantar fasciitis is typically caused by the overuse of the plantar fascia, which results in inflammation and the thickening of the tendon. Running and jumping activities are usual causes of plantar fasciitis, in addition to wearing poor footwear or having flat feet and tight calf muscles. There are several ways to treat plantar fasciitis, including stretching the lower leg muscles and elevating or taping the foot for relief. Wearing proper shoes can protect the heel, allowing the foot to rest while healing. A consultation with a podiatrist may be advised for a proper diagnosis and treatment. Podiatrists can offer a number of treatment options, such as orthotic inserts, immobilization devices, or a therapy regimen.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, contact Dr. Rudolph La Fontant  from Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

What is Plantar Fasciitis?

Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the thick band of tissue that runs along the bottom of your foot, known as the plantar fascia, and causes mild to severe heel pain.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

  • Excessive running
  • Non-supportive shoes
  • Overpronation
  • Repeated stretching and tearing of the plantar fascia

How Can It Be Treated?

  • Conservative measures – anti-inflammatories, ice packs, stretching exercises, physical therapy, orthotic devices
  • Shockwave therapy – sound waves are sent to the affected area to facilitate healing and are usually used for chronic cases of plantar fasciitis
  • Surgery – usually only used as a last resort when all else fails. The plantar fascia can be surgically detached from the heel

While very treatable, plantar fasciitis is definitely not something that should be ignored. Especially in severe cases, speaking to your doctor right away is highly recommended to avoid complications and severe heel pain. Your podiatrist can work with you to provide the appropriate treatment options tailored to your condition.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Des Moines, IA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis
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Locations & Hours

Foot & Ankle Institute of Iowa
2629 Beaver Ave. Suite 15
Des Moines, IA 50310

Phone: (515) 223-5219
Fax: (515) 223-9344

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