Podiatrists are trained to treat a wide range of conditions that affect the lower limbs, ankles and feet. Here are two conditions which most professionals of this kind treat on a regular basis.
Plantar fasciitis is an extremely common issue, particularly amongst long-distance runners. It is a condition which causes the fascia (a tendon which stretches from the toe bones to the heel) to become inflamed. This tendon serves as a shock absorber for the foot and helps to support its arch.
When it becomes inflamed, sufferers may notice pain in the affected heel, which will worsen each time they place their weight on the foot. Plantar fasciitis tends to be most painful when people first wake up in the morning and many sufferers will find that they can only hobble around for the first ten minutes or so after they get out of bed.
There are several ways that a podiatrist can treat this issue. In most cases, they will begin by trying to reduce inflammation in the affected heel. They usually do this by instructing the patient to take NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory medication) and by placing ice on the foot.
After this, they may provide the patient with customised orthotics which, when placed inside the person's shoe, will help to prevent pressure from being placed on the inflamed tendon each time they stand or walk.
The podiatrist may also provide them with a night splint, to ensure that their heel stays in a non-strenuous position whilst they lie in bed at night, and may also offer them steroid injections.
Corns are small, circular patches of hardened, thickened skin that tend to appear on the soles of the feet, or by the sides of the toes. They are usually the result of wearing ill-fitting footwear or high-heels, both of which can rub against certain areas of a person's feet.
In addition to being unsightly, corns can also cause people a significant amount of pain when they walk. As such, most sufferers eventually have their corns treated by a podiatrist.
For small, non-vascular corns, a podiatrist may use special corn plasters to remove the thickened skin. These plasters contain a type of acid which eats away at the corn.
In other cases, the podiatrist may cut off the corn. This is quite a simple procedure which only requires local anaesthetic.
The podiatrist will also usually try to identify and eliminate the source of the corn; for example, if the patient's shoes are the problem, the podiatrist may recommend that they try other types of footwear or may provide them with insoles to prevent the shoes from rubbing against the skin on their feet as they walk.Share
9 October 2017
Hi, my name is Steve and I’m a keen runner. I’ve been running for fun for years. I love the buzz I get from a long run and the fact that my hobby helps keeps me fit. Last year, I started to experience problems with my feet and ankles. It started with just a few twinges and soreness but ended up getting so bad that I couldn’t run to my usual schedule any longer. I couldn’t work out what was going wrong, so a friend recommended I see a podiatrist. I was a bit sceptical at first; however, my podiatrist immediately identified some issues with my running gait and shoes that were causing my problems. I started this blog to pass on some of the advice I got for any other runners who are suddenly suffering from unexplained discomfort. Hope it helps keep you on the road!