Podiatrist Blog

Posts for category: Foot Conditions

By Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care
October 08, 2018
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: Bunion  

Is your foot changing shape? Is there a pronounced bump at the bottom of the big toe? Has walking become uncomfortable? These symptoms and others often indicate a common podiatric problem called a bunion. In Commerce Township, Livonia, and Royal Oak, MI, Dr. Randy Semma, Dr. Michelle Bertelle-Semma, and Dr. Stacey Stefansky treat bunions, thereby helping their patients remain active and comfortable.

How Bunions Happen

The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society says that these bony deformities happen to children, teens, and adults, with women and seniors being especially prone to developing them. Precipitating factors include:

  • Lax connective tissue in the foot
  • Osteoporosis
  • Heredity (they tend to run in families)
  • Narrow, tight, high-heeled shoes
  • Flat feet
  • Fractures and sprains around the first metatarsophalangeal joint

Typically, when the foot doctor sees a suspected bunion, it looks red, irritated, and may have a callus or corn. Calluses often form on the bottom of feet which have bunions. Accompanying the bunion may be arthritis, bursitis, a limited range of motion, a deformity called hammertoes, and there may even be a crossing of the big toe over the second or third toe. Pain, of course, accompanies the deformity in varying intensity.

During a bunion inspection, you can expect that, along with a visual inspection of the foot, the podiatrist will make you walk to check your gait, and may take digital X-rays to visualize the joint.

Treating Bunions

Most people do well with non-invasive interventions. Bunionectomy, or surgical removal of the bump and re-alignment of the big toe, is more the exception rather than the rule in treatment.

As part of a customized care plan, the foot doctor may advise:

  • Over-the-counter analgesics to reduce discomfort
  • A night splint for the adolescent patient whose bones are more malleable
  • Shoe padding
  • Customized orthotics, or shoe inserts, to correct gait problems and reduce friction on the joint
  • Stretching exercises
  • A change in footwear

As simple as the last intervention is, it usually works wonders. Quality shoes with room in the toe box allow for proper alignment and less friction on the first metatarsophalangeal joint. The American Podiatric Medical Association advises that women wear heel no higher than 2-1/2 inches to keep undue pressure off the forefoot.

Comfortable Feet

You can have them once again. Contact Nationwide Foot & Ankle today for a consultation on your bunion. We have three convenient locations:

  • For Livonia, call (734) 261-3400
  • For Royal Oak, call (248) 549-3338
  • For Commerce Township, call (248) 956-0177
By Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care
February 26, 2018
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: ngrown Toenails  

Ingrown toenails are an uncomfortable but very common foot problem. Dr. Randy Semma and Dr. Michele Bertelle-Semma see many ingrown toenailpatients who are experiencing the discomfort of ingrown toenails at their Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care practices in Livonia, Royal Oak, and Commerce Township, MI. Fortunately, treatment for ingrown nails is typically simple and straightforward. You'll learn more as we answer some frequently-asked questions about ingrown toenails in this post.

What is an ingrown toenail?

Most commonly affecting the big toe on one or both sides, ingrowth happens when the edges of the nail begin to push into the skin that surrounds it. This breaks the skin, which leads to redness, swelling, pain, and even infection. Many of our patients at Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care tell our podiatrists that their toe is very tender and hurts to place even slight pressure on it.

How do ingrown toenails happen?

When your podiatrist treats ingrown toenails, it's often because of an improper nail trimming technique. Some people have a tendency to cut their nails so they're curved like the shape of the toe, which leads to the edges growing into the skin. Trimming straight across will lessen your chances of ingrowth. Tight-fitting socks, stockings, or shoes can also cause the toenails to grow incorrectly, as can a prior injury that disrupts the normal growth of the nail. It's also been determined that ingrown toenails are hereditary.

How are ingrown toenails treated?

Your Commerce Township podiatrist will start with an examination that includes a discussion with you about your symptoms. If you do have an ingrown toenail, part of the nail may be removed to stop the improper growth pattern; you may need a local anesthetic. It may also be necessary to take antibiotics if an infection is present. It is especially important for people with circulation issues, such as those with diabetes, to seek treatment for an ingrown toenail right away.

For evaluation of any foot or ankle-related issue, including ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Michele Bertelle-Semma or Dr. Randy Semma at Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care today. We have locations in Commerce Township, Livonia, and Royal Oak, MI, for your convenience.

By Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care
December 11, 2017
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: Foot Pain  

The feet undergo a great deal of stress daily. Whether walking, jogging, climbing stairs, or standing for extended periods, the feet endure foot paindaily wear and tear, which can lead to foot pain. Pain can develop in any area of the feet, including the heels, ankles, and toes. There are several treatment options for alleviating foot pain. At Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care, Dr. Randy Bernstein, Dr. Randy Semma, and Dr. Michele Bertelle-Semma are your podiatrists for treatment of such conditions as bunions, ankle injuries, or plantar fasciitis in Royal Oak, MI.

Bunions

A common source of foot pain around the toe area is bunions. Bunions are bony protrusions that develop on the side of the foot near the big toe when the toe joint slips out of place. Since bunions protrude outward, they are easily irritated as the shoe’s interior rubs against them throughout the day. Fortunately, there are several treatment options for alleviating the pain associated with bunions. Treatment includes wearing orthotic inserts or wearing footwear with a roomy toe box. Surgery to remove the bunion and realign the toe joint is another option.

Ankle Injuries

Ankle injuries are another common source of foot pain. Sprained ankles, in particular, are a common injury. When an ankle is sprained, the ligaments inside become stretched or torn, which often results in acute foot pain. Left untreated, an ankle injury can result in long-term or chronic foot and ankle pain, which underscores the importance of seeking treatment. Treatments for ankle injuries include resting the ankle, applying ice, using compression bandages, or undergoing surgery to repair torn ligaments.

Heel Pain

Heel conditions are another reason for foot pain. Two of the most common types of heel conditions are plantar fasciitis and achilles tendinosis, also known as tendonitis. Plantar fasciitis is associated with pain on the bottom of the heel, while achilles tendinosis is associated with pain at the back of the heel along the achilles tendon. In Royal Oak, plantar fasciitis and achilles tendonitis treatments include wearing orthotic shoe inserts, physical therapy, applying ice to the heels, resting the feet, or surgery.

Whatever type of foot pain you are experiencing, there are treatments that can help. In Royal Oak, plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinosis, and other types of foot pain can all be treated by the podiatrists at Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Bernstein, Dr. Semma, and Dr. Bertelle-Semma, call one of the three locations. For Royal Oak, call (248) 549-3338. For Livonia, call (734) 261-3400 or call (248) 956-0177 for the Commerce Township location.

By Nationwide Foot & Ankle Care
August 01, 2017
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: Bunions  

Foot conditions which cause pain and discomfort can quickly take a toll on your daily life, especially when they begin affecting standing andBunion walking. Bunions are no different, and, though they start painlessly and grow slowly, can become very painful. However, you can find relief from your bunion pain with help from your podiatrist. Find out more about relieving bunion pain and treating this common condition with Dr. Randy Bernstein, Dr. Randy Semma, and Dr. Michele Bertelle-Semma at Nationwide Foot and Ankle Care with locations in Livonia, Royal Oak and Commerce Township, MI.

Do I have a bunion? 
Bunions are very slow growing and many patients do not realize they suffer from this condition until it begins causing them pain. However, you and your podiatrist can work together while your bunion is in its early stages in order to prevent its growth and treat the symptoms it causes. Some early warning signs and symptoms of bunions include:

  • a lump on the inside of the foot at the base of the big toe
  • pain or discomfort around the joint of the big toe
  • decreased range of motion of the big toe
  • redness or irritation on the side of the foot due to friction
  • the big toe growing towards the small toes, causing the smaller toes to overlap
  • corns or calluses where the toes overlap

Bunion Treatment in Livonia, Royal Oak and Commerce Township
If your podiatrist catches your bunion in its earlier stages, you could prevent its growth by wearing properly fitting shoes which have enough room in the toe box for the toes to lie flat. Other conservative treatment options include orthotics that improve the support and stability of your shoes. Your doctor will also advise you to avoid wearing ill-fitting, too-narrow or high heeled shoes. If conservative treatment options don't provide you with relief, surgery may be needed. This surgery removes the bunion and realigns the toe.

For more information on bunions or their treatments, please contact Dr. Bernstein, Dr. Semma and Dr. Bertelle-Semma at Nationwide Foot and Ankle Care with locations in Livonia, Royal Oak and Commerce Township, MI. Call (734) 261-3400 to schedule an appointment in Livonia, (248) 549-3338 to schedule an appointment in Royal Oak, and (248) 956-0177 to schedule an appointment in Commerce Township today!