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Posts for: January, 2016

Home Treatment

  • Soak toe in room temperature water and gently massage the nail fold to relieve inflammation
  • Wear properly fitting footwear
  • Avoid activities that involve repeated pressure on the toes such as kicking or running
  • Do not attempt “bathroom surgery” by clipping, gouging or picking at the nail or skin

If ingrown toenails fail to improve or become infected, it is time to seek treatment from a Hackensack podiatrist.

Podiatric Treatment

  • Oral antibiotics may be prescribed to treat infection
  • A minor surgical procedure can be performed in the office to remove the ingrown toenail – this involves applying a local anesthetic and removing the nail’s side border and possibly the nail root
  • After care involves keeping the bandage clean and dry and completing any course of medication prescribed

Although ingrown toenail removal may seem daunting, with proper aftercare, some people resume normal activity within 24 hours and experience little to no post operative pain. As with any potentially painful ailment, prevention is always the best policy. There are a few simple things you can do to avoid ingrown toenails.


  • Cut toenails in a straight line
  • Leave enough length that you are able to get your fingernail under the end of the nail
  • Avoid shoes that are too short, tight or loose in the toe area
  • Most importantly, see a Hackensack foot doctor for regular foot care

Don’t wait until you have a problem. Your feet are one of the most important and overlooked parts of your body. Give them the attention they deserve and they will be happy feet!


In early 2015, a number of professional athletes were temporarily put out of commission thanks to broken ankles. Among them were University of Kentucky’s Janee Thompson and Los Angeles Kings’ Tanner Pearson.

Thompson reportedly broke her tibia and Pearson, as it later turned out, actually broke his fibula. Both are two of the three bones that make up the top ankle joint. The other is the talus. It should also be mentioned that there is another joint in the foot that connects the ankle bone to the heel bone. It’s called the subtalar joint but apparently neither athlete broke that one this time around.

When the tibia, fibula or talus breaks, it can be quite traumatic for athletes and everyday Joes alike. In most cases, swelling and severe pain are immediately present and the injured person can no longer stand up without assistance. As time goes on, bruising is also likely to appear on and around the broken bones. After the injury, it is extremely important that the accident victim’s broken ankle is examined and repaired. Otherwise, the deformities could become permanent, thereby rendering the person disabled.

Furthermore, if the person who sustains the broken ankle hasn’t finished growing yet (e.g. child), he or she will need to be closely monitored for bone or joint weakness and deformities long after the initial injury has been treated. The extended monitoring period is crucial to ensure that the broken ankle doesn’t interfere with the leg and foot bones’ normal growth as time goes on. In most instances, the extended period will last at least two years, maybe more depending on the individual’s normal growth rate and unique circumstances.

The severity of the injury will dictate which treatment methods are used. Options often include, but are not limited to emergency surgery, casting and post-surgery rehabilitation. Depending on the situation, full recovery from broken ankles may take two months or more. As such, the two athletes that we mentioned earlier are likely to be off of their respective courts for at least part or all of a full season. To speak with a Hackensack podiatrist about broken ankles and best practices to ensure the bones heal properly, please click here.

Did you know that diabetic shoes don’t have to be ugly and expensive? There are actually a surprising number of attractive, diabetic shoes to choose from nowadays and the majority of them are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and other insurance. There’s just one twist to contend with. Many insurance companies won’t cover the cost of diabetic shoes unless they were ordered by a licensed podiatrist and purchased through a durable medical equipment company. In some cases, the footwear must meet certain guidelines and be professionally fitted too.

So, which diabetic shoes do podiatrists order for their patients? It largely depends on the condition of the patient’s feet and how they live their lives. However, the majority of diabetic footwear has what’s known as extra depth. The extra depth is there to cushion the feet, thereby preventing pressure ulcers. Most of the shoes also feature wide widths, Velcro closures, removable orthotics, custom inserts and smooth surfaces to help relieve pressure on all areas of the person’s feet. The diabetic shoes may be worn with therapeutic stockings or socks designed to improve circulation and reduce incidents of pitting edema, both of which are common symptoms in diabetic populations.

As far as the styles go, don’t expect podiatrists to order their patients pairs of stiletto heels or cheap flip-flops. Dress shoes are available but they generally take the form of flats or boots with thick soles. Modified wedge shoes, sneakers, running shoes and other sporty footwear are available. In some instances, it may be possible to purchase modified sandals. The modified sandals are typically attached to the feet using Velcro closures. The toe areas are open and you won’t find Y-shaped toe straps on any of them. Why? The Y-shaped straps have a tendency to cut into the toe and cause pressure ulcers or chafing. To learn more about diabetic shoes and find the right pairs for your feet, please speak with a Hackensack podiatrist.

Gout (Gouty Arthritis) is a painful arthritic disease that causes severe inflammation, pain, redness, and swelling. Patients attest that, without treatment and care, gout is debilitating, often leading to an inability to work or live life normally.

Gout occurs when too much uric acid (human waste — a byproduct of normal metabolic function) builds up in the body and isn’t excreted normally. A problem that, in and of itself, can lead to many other problems, including crystal build-up and kidney stones.

Here are some other facts about gout:

  • Though uric acid is normally absorbed by the blood, in the case of gout, it is not. This occurs when the body ups the levels of uric acid it makes, when the kidneys fail to excrete it, and with a diet consisting of foods with too many purines.
  • Your chances of gout increases when: you are male, if it runs in your family, if you are overweight, if you drink too much alcohol, or if you have had an organ transplant.
  • Gout has the potential to cause under-skin nodules called tophi.
  • Another large contributor to whether you will get gout is related to the amount of sugary drinks you consume. A recent study found that people who consume at least two sugary soft drinks a day increase their risk of gout by 85%.
  • Scientists have also found that those who consume cherries may slightly lower their risk of getting gout.
  • Visiting a doctor may only take you so far. While a rheumatologist can diagnose and prescribe treatment, those who suffer multiple attacks of gout a year need to set up their own prevention plan to curb the onset of acute attacks themselves.

If you are living with the pain caused by gout, you don’t have to. Visit a doctor today to help eliminate and treat your gout symptoms, and live a life free from pain.

Although ankle sprains can happen anytime, the tail end of the year tends to send more people rushing to the podiatrist than any other. They aren’t the only injuries that may occur either. It’s also not uncommon for podiatrists to see a rise in cases of FHL tenosynovitis, plantar fascittis, hallux rigidus, metatarsalgia, athlete’s feet and frost bite. Most podiatry offices attribute those increases to poorly maintained surfaces, winter sports, badly chosen footwear, snow blowing and snow shoveling activities. They can all really wreak havoc on the ankle joint and the foot in general. With that said, local podiatrists are urging everyone to remember the following:

Do ditch the smooth-soled dress shoes, ultra thin pantyhose and high heel boots. Instead, opt for insulated, waterproof footwear that will provide sufficient traction, warmth and support for the weather at hand. If you’re prone to athlete’s feet, consider choosing a pair that features removable, washable inserts. And if you just have to keep your high heels and dress shoes around, only wear them inside where it’s dry.

Don’t go walking around after dark in poorly lit areas either. Doing so will only increase your risk of slipping on ice and snow. For those early mornings and nights when you need to pass through such areas, keep a small, LED flashlight or reusable, emergency glow stick on your person. They may help provide enough light to detect potential sidewalk, curbside or parking lot hazards.

Do think about wearing insulated socks and checking your feet regularly for signs of frost nip or frost bite. If your toes and feet look pale and feel somewhat numb, get off of them straightaway. Then take the necessary first aid measures to bring them back to normal. Should blood filled blisters, black scabs, extensive numbness and severe discoloration be present, head to the nearest Hackensack doctor’s office for emergency assistance.