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November 2021

The Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) test is a non-invasive vascular screening that evaluates a patient’s risk of having peripheral artery disease (PAD), which causes poor circulation in the lower limbs. During this test, the doctor measures your blood pressure in both arms and both ankles and then compares those numbers to come up with a ratio. Each range of ratios is correlated with a level of risk of having PAD. A normal ABI range is from 0.9-1.4. A person with a mild-to-moderate risk of PAD has an ABI between 0.7-0.9. Someone with severe PAD could have an ABI between 0.3-0.5. Critical cases have ABI ratios of 0.3 or less. To learn more about peripheral artery disease or to get tested, schedule an appointment with a podiatrist near you. 

Vascular testing plays an important part in diagnosing disease like peripheral artery disease. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, or diabetes, consult with one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Vascular Testing?

Vascular testing checks for how well blood circulation is in the veins and arteries. This is most often done to determine and treat a patient for peripheral artery disease (PAD), stroke, and aneurysms. Podiatrists utilize vascular testing when a patient has symptoms of PAD or if they believe they might. If a patient has diabetes, a podiatrist may determine a vascular test to be prudent to check for poor blood circulation.

How Is it Conducted?

Most forms of vascular testing are non-invasive. Podiatrists will first conduct a visual inspection for any wounds, discoloration, and any abnormal signs prior to a vascular test.

 The most common tests include:

  • Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) examination
  • Doppler examination
  • Pedal pulses

These tests are safe, painless, and easy to do. Once finished, the podiatrist can then provide a diagnosis and the best course for treatment.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Wednesday, 24 November 2021 16:01

December 2021 News and Updates

Check out our monthly newsletter! This month, we're covering:

  • Finding Good Winter or Snow Boots
  • Older Adults and Proper Indoor Footwear
  • Singing the Chilblain Blues
  • and more!

Click here for our December newsletter.

Tuesday, 23 November 2021 00:00

Getting to the Bottom of Cracked Heels

When you have dry, thickened, callused skin around the edges of your heels, they can crack due to the fat pad under your heels expanding while you walk. There are several factors that can cause dry, cracked heels or exacerbate the problem. These include standing for prolonged periods of time, wearing shoes with open backs or walking around barefoot, taking long, hot showers, using harsh soaps, and living in a cold or dry climate. Certain medical conditions, such as a fungal infection, psoriasis, or a vitamin deficiency, can also cause cracked heels. While cracked heels are typically not painful, those who have particularly deep cracks may experience pain and bleeding, and people with underlying health conditions, like diabetes, should always be monitoring the health of their heels. To learn more about cracked heels and to help find the right treatment for yours, please consult with a podiatrist. 

Cracked heels are unsightly and can cause further damage to your shoes and feet. If you have any concerns, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Cracked Heels

Cracked heels appear unappealing and can make it harder for you walk around in sandals. Aside from looking unpleasant, cracked heels can also tear stockings, socks, and wear out your shoes. There are several methods to help restore a cracked heel and prevent further damage.

How Do You Get Them?

Dry skin is the number one culprit in creating cracked heels. Many athletes, walkers, joggers, and even swimmers suffer from cracked heels. Age and skin oil production play a role to getting cracked heels as well.

Promote Healing

Over the counter medicines can help, especially for those that need instant relief or who suffer from chronic dry feet.

Wear Socks – Wearing socks with medicated creams helps lock in moisture.

Moisturizers – Applying both day and night will help alleviate dryness which causes cracking.

Pumice Stones – These exfoliate and remove dead skin, which allows for smoother moisturizer application and better absorption into the skin. 

Change in Diet

Eating healthy with a well-balanced diet will give the skin a fresh and radiant look. Your body responds to the kinds of food you ingest. Omega-3 fatty acids and zinc supplements can also revitalize skin tissue.

Most importantly, seek professional help if unsure how to proceed in treating cracked heels. A podiatrist will help you with any questions or information needed. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Tuesday, 16 November 2021 00:00

What Is Cuboid Syndrome?

The cuboid bone is a tiny, cube-shaped (cuboidal) bone, which is one of the seven tarsal bones of the foot. It is located on the outside of the foot, roughly halfway between the pinky toe and the heel. The cuboid bone moves slightly during normal foot motion, however, forceful movements or certain positions that are maintained for prolonged periods of time can cause the cuboid bone to shift excessively and therefore it  becomes dislocated. This is known as cuboid syndrome. Symptoms may include pain and possibly swelling on the lateral (outside) part of the foot which increases when walking or standing. It may even be difficult or impossible to walk. Podiatrists may use a “whip” procedure to quickly and firmly apply force to the cuboid bone to get it back into alignment as the patient relaxes in a prone position. If you believe you may be suffering from cuboid syndrome, contact a podiatrist.

Cuboid syndrome, also known as cuboid subluxation, occurs when the joints and ligaments near the cuboid bone in the foot become torn. If you have cuboid syndrome, consult with one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Cuboid syndrome is a common cause of lateral foot pain, which is pain on the outside of the foot. The condition may happen suddenly due to an ankle sprain, or it may develop slowly overtime from repetitive tension through the bone and surrounding structures.

Causes

The most common causes of cuboid syndrome include:

  • Injury – The most common cause of this ailment is an ankle sprain.
  • Repetitive Strain – Tension placed through the peroneus longus muscle from repetitive activities such as jumping and running may cause excessive traction on the bone causing it to sublux.
  • Altered Foot Biomechanics – Most people suffering from cuboid subluxation have flat feet.

Symptoms

A common symptom of cuboid syndrome is pain along the outside of the foot which can be felt in the ankle and toes. This pain may create walking difficulties and may cause those with the condition to walk with a limp.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis of cuboid syndrome is often difficult, and it is often misdiagnosed. X-rays, MRIs and CT scans often fail to properly show the cuboid subluxation. Although there isn’t a specific test used to diagnose cuboid syndrome, your podiatrist will usually check if pain is felt while pressing firmly on the cuboid bone of your foot.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are ice therapy, rest, exercise, taping, and orthotics.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Friday, 12 November 2021 00:00

Do Your Child's Feet Hurt?

Have your child's feet been examined lately? Healthy feet are happy feet. If your child is complaining of foot pain, it may be a sign of underlying problems.

In Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT), a handheld device sends a series of acoustic pulses through the surface of the skin to an area of damaged tissue. This intense energy creates a microtrauma in the injured tissue, causing the body to respond by increasing blood circulation and metabolism. This accelerates the body’s natural healing response, helps the body to produce new cells, and reduces pain. Shockwave therapy is a non-invasive treatment with minimal side effects. The treatments only take a couple of minutes and are usually administered once a week for 3-4 weeks or more, depending on the level of damage/pain and how long it has been present. Shockwave therapy can be very effective in the treatment of plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinopathy, and more. Contact your podiatrist to see if your condition may be treated with ESWT.

Shockwave therapy is a treatment commonly used to treat various injuries and conditions, particularly plantar fasciitis in the feet. To learn more, consult with one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Shockwave Therapy

Shockwave therapy is a new treatment option designed to treat bone conditions such as tennis elbow, shoulder pain, and others. Shockwave therapy uses high intensity sound waves that are directed to the affected tissues of the body with pinpoint accuracy. The effects are very beneficial, leading to a production of collagen fibers, eliminating inflammation.

Who Benefits from Shockwave?

Shockwave is recommended for patients suffering from heel pain and associated problems. Heel pain is a common condition which can be caused by obesity, overexertion, and spending a substantial amount of time on hard floors with your feet exposed and unsupported.

Fast and Easy

The therapy is actually a simple process that can leave patients feeling better the very next day. Shockwave therapy is not as dramatic as it sounds. It enables more blood flow to effected areas, addressing the source of the problem and allowing treatment to last for a long time.

Treatment & Recovery Time

Shockwave treatment will enable your feet to recover quickly. This is especially important since surgery is not required. It is cost effective and does not require the use of anesthesia. This treatment is a better option to surgery, since it is proven safe.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Shockwave Therapy
Tuesday, 02 November 2021 00:00

The Toll High Heels Take On Your Feet

It is no secret that wearing high heels every day can be damaging to your feet and legs. Wearing them also creates a reduction in range of movement, balance control, step length, and ankle muscle movement. Some studies even suggest that musculoskeletal disorders may occur later in life as a result of wearing high heels regularly. A study conducted by the University of Alabama at Birmingham points to a doubling of high heel shoe-related injuries over a 10-year period, with most of those injuries affecting the feet and ankles. If you wear high heels on a regular basis and are experiencing any pain or discomfort, make an appointment with a podiatrist. They can examine and test you to diagnose the problem, as well as discuss treatment options which may include custom orthotics and footwear modifications to reduce the harmful effects high heels may be having on your feet and ankles. 

High heels have a history of causing foot and ankle problems. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Integrative Foot & Ankle Centers of Washington. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Effects of High Heels on the Feet

High heels are popular shoes among women because of their many styles and societal appeal.  Despite this, high heels can still cause many health problems if worn too frequently.

Which Parts of My Body Will Be Affected by High Heels?

  • Ankle Joints
  • Achilles Tendon – May shorten and stiffen with prolonged wear
  • Balls of the Feet
  • Knees – Heels cause the knees to bend constantly, creating stress on them
  • Back – They decrease the spine’s ability to absorb shock, which may lead to back pain.  The vertebrae of the lower back may compress.

What Kinds of Foot Problems Can Develop from Wearing High Heels?

  • Corns
  • Calluses
  • Hammertoe
  • Bunions
  • Morton’s Neuroma
  • Plantar Fasciitis

How Can I Still Wear High Heels and Maintain Foot Health?

If you want to wear high heeled shoes, make sure that you are not wearing them every day, as this will help prevent long term physical problems.  Try wearing thicker heels as opposed to stilettos to distribute weight more evenly across the feet.  Always make sure you are wearing the proper shoes for the right occasion, such as sneakers for exercising.  If you walk to work, try carrying your heels with you and changing into them once you arrive at work.  Adding inserts to your heels can help cushion your feet and absorb shock. Full foot inserts or metatarsal pads are available. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Kirkland, Everett, and Renton, WA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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