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Monday, 30 May 2016 00:00

Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis

fractures1Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation and damage to the joints over time without proper treatment. The chronic condition can lead to severe pain and there have been several treatments developed to prevent the progression of rheumatoid arthritis symptoms. These treatments include anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroid injections for affected joints, and radiotherapy as a last option.

Understanding where RA starts will help treat and prevent the condition. If you are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

What Is Rheumatoid Arthritis?

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder in which the body’s own immune system attacks the membranes surrounding the joints. Severe pain and immobility are caused by an inflammation of the lining of your joints, and in worse cases the destruction of the joint’s cartilage and bone can occur.

Rheumatoid Arthritis of the Feet

Although RA usually attacks multiple bones and joints throughout the entire body, many cases result in pain in the foot or ankle area. Pain will often initially present in the toes before the condition worsens and spreads throughout the entire foot.

Symptoms

  • Swelling and pain in the feet
  • Stiffness in the feet
  • Pain on the ball or sole of the feet
  • Joint shift and deformation

Diagnosis

Quick diagnosis of RA in the feet is important so that your podiatrist can treat the area effectively. Your doctor may ask you about your medical history and lifestyle to help determine possible causes of your RA.

Treatment

Unfortunately, there is no cure for RA, so treatment options are designed to specifically target the symptoms of it, most notably the pain it causes. Two types of anti-inflammatory drugs – non-steroidal or NSAIDs and corticosteroids – may be prescribed by your doctor. In some severe cases where the joints are too badly damaged, surgery may be an option. As always, speak with your podiatrist to help determine the appropriate treatment options available to you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about rheumatoid arthritis

wartsPlantar warts are a contagious skin infection caused by the HPV virus, which thrives in environments that are warm and moist, such as public pools or locker rooms. Plantar warts affect the soles of your feet and can spread quickly throughout your body. Solutions for treating plantar warts involve surgical removal, liquid nitrogen freezing or cryotherapy, and CO2 laser. Protect your feet from plantar warts by wearing footwear in public areas with open sources of water, keeping your feet clean and dry, and refrain from picking at your warts if you have contracted them.

If not treated properly, plantar warts can exacerbate and become debilitating. If you would like medical assistance regarding plantar wart treatment, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts are the result of human papillomavirus (HPV) getting into the feet through tiny cuts or abrasions. Typically, plantar warts are contracted through walking barefoot on dirty surfaces since the virus thrives in warm and moist environments. They are mostly found on the heels or balls of the feet.

While plantar warts are generally harmless, those experiencing excessive pain, suffering from diabetes or a compromised immune system require immediate medical care. Plantar warts are easily diagnosed, usually through scraping off a bit of rough skin or by getting a biopsy.

Symptoms

  • Legions on the bottom of your feet, usually rough and grainy
  • Hard or thick callused spots
  • Wart seeds, which are small clotted blood vessels that look like little black spots
  • Pain, discomfort, or tenderness of your feet when walking or standing

Treatment

  • Freezing
  • Electric tool removal
  • Laser Treatment
  • Topical Creams (prescription only)
  • Over-the-counter medications

To help prevent developing plantar warts, avoid walking barefoot over abrasive surfaces that can cause cuts or wounds for HPV to get into. Avoiding direct contact with other warts, as well as not picking or rubbing existing warts, will help prevent the further spread of plantar warts. If you think you have developed plantar warts, it is best speak to your podiatrist. He or she can diagnose the warts on your feet and recommend the appropriate treatment options.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Plantar Warts

plantar-fasciitis6Wesley Johnson of the Los Angeles Clippers had to miss the game against the Jazz due to plantar fasciitis in both feet. Johnson was experiencing pain when he ran and jumped, possibly why he was also sat out in the game against the Lakers. Johnson was dealing with “pain in both feet at various points earlier this season,” so Johnson’s status was then currently unknown.

Plantar fasciitis can be very painful and inconvenient. If you are experiencing heel pain or symptoms of plantar fasciitis, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

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 Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Plantar Fasciitis

diabetic-footcareDiabetes is a disease that can affect different parts of your body, most notably your feet. According to health.usnews.com, “approximately 15 to 25 percent of patients with diabetes will develop a foot ulcer at some point during their lifetime.” Diabetic foot ulcers, injuries to the feet, can lead to infection if not treated properly. Foot ulcers are characterized as an opening “in the skin that exposes the underlying tissue.” There exist neuropathic ulcers, which occur due to a loss of sensation in the feet, or ischemic ulcers, which occur due to a lack of blood flow in the body. It is important to see your doctor immediately for evaluation and treatment of any diabetic conditions you may have.

Diabetics must pay special attention to their feet to help prevent any complications. If you believe you are having problems with your diabetic feet,visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes affects millions of people every year. Diabetes can damage blood vessels in many parts of the body, including 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 because 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 Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Diabetic Foot Care

sports-injuryDr. Eric Tan, assistant professor of Clinical Medicine from USC, recently answered some questions from runners regarding injury prevention. While many people understand the basic principle that stretching before and after a run is key in preventing injuries, Dr. Tan believes that there is more one can do. Maintaining and improving one’s flexibility with daily stretching, warming up, and cooling down before and after runs will help keep the body limber. Including days of rest, keeping hydrated, and eating a healthy diet are also very important.

Running injuries, even with proper precautions, can still occur in many runners. If you are suffering from a running injury,visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

How to Prevent Running Injuries

Many common running injuries are caused by overuse and overtraining. When the back of the kneecap starts wearing out and starts causing pain in your knee, this is commonly referred to as runner’s knee. Runner’s knee is a decrease in strength in your quadriceps and can occur if you’re not wearing properly fitted or supporting shoes. To prevent runner’s knee, focusing on hip strengthening is a good idea, as well as strengthening your quads to keep the kneecaps aligned.

What Are Some Causes of Running Injuries?
- One cause of a common running injury is called iliotibial band syndrome.
- Plantar fasciitis is also another common injury.
- Stress fractures can occur from overtraining, lack of calcium, or even your running style.

Best Ways to Prevent Running Injuries
- Wear footwear that fits properly and suits your running needs.
- Running shoes are the only protective gear that runners have to safeguard them from injury.
- Make a training schedule. Adding strengthening exercises as well as regular stretching can help keep you strong and limber and can lessen the possibility of injuries.
- Stretching keeps muscles limber, this will help you gain better flexibility.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about How to Prevent Running Injuries

achilles-tendon5A new therapy treatment developed by bioengineers and physicians at the University of California, San Diego should help in the treatment of poor blood circulation that may be caused by critical limb ischemia and peripheral arterial disease. These conditions affect the limbs, cause poor blood circulation and tissue damage, and can lead to amputations if not treated immediately. The treatment involves injecting gel into skeletal muscle tissue, which can help promote muscle remodeling and blood flow.

Poor circulation in the feet can be extremely dangerous. If you are having difficulties with reduced circulation, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup, or atherosclerosis, results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. It usually restricts the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

-muscle pain    -numbness in legs

-cramps            -skin discoloration

-weakness        -slower nail & hair growth

-stiffness          -erectile dysfunction

Those who are over 50-years-old, have diabetes and/or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD, and it is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce the risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercising and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

Consult a podiatrist or doctor to help determine a regime that suits you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Poor Circulation in the Feet

arthritis4The “super food” green tea may now offer health benefits for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. A recent study conducted by the Arthritis and Rheumatology medical journal found that a compound in green tea, epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), helped reduce swelling caused by rheumatoid arthritis. The study, conducted on a group of mice, found that EGCG “appeared to reduce inflammation in [rheumatoid arthritis] without interfering with other cellular functions in the mice.”

The feet are one of the most common sites for arthritis to occur in the body. If you are struggling with arthritis in your feet or ankles, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

Arthritic Foot Care

Arthritis is a joint disorder that involves inflammation of different joints in your body, including your feet. Arthritis is often caused by a degenerative joint disease and causes mild to severe pain in all affected areas. On top of this, swelling and stiffness in the affected joints can also be a common symptom of arthritis.

In many cases, wearing ill-fitting shoes can worsen the effects and pain of arthritis. Wearing shoes that have a lower heel and extra room can help your feet feel more comfortable. In certain forms, such as rheumatoid arthritis, the arch in your foot may become problematic. Buying shoes with proper arch support that contour to your feet can help immensely.

Alleviating Arthritic Pain

  • Exercises that stretch the foot can prevent further pain and injury and increase mobility
  • Most of the pain can be alleviated with anti-inflammatory drugs, heat, and topical medications
  • Massages can help to temporarily alleviate pain.

It is best to see your doctor for the treatment that is right for your needs and symptoms. Conditions vary, and a podiatrist can help you determine the right method of care for your feet.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Arthritic Foot Care

corns2Although flip flops can be worn on many different occasions, they may not necessarily be the best type of footwear out there for your feet. Flip flops are open-toed, meaning they do not protect your feet completely, and according to WebMD, “they offer no arch support and could potentially cause a sprained ankle.” The best option is to invest in a sturdy pair of flip flops if they’re your go to shoes. Flip flops made from leather material are sturdy and offer comfort.

Wearing flip-flops for a long period of time can be harmful for the feet. To learn more, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

Flip-Flops and Feet

When the weather starts warming up, people enjoy wearing flip-flops.  Flip-flops are comfortable, stylish, and easy to slip on and off, perfect for any summer beach goer.  However, these shoes can cause harm to the feet.

How Can Flip-Flops Affect Me Long-Term?

  • Ankle problems
  • Hip problems
  • Lower back problems
  • Pain in the balls of the feet
  • Problems with foot arches
  • Changes in the way you walk

Are there injuries associated with flip-flops?

Yes.  Since flip-flops are relatively weak and do not provide the same amount of support as sneakers, people who wear flip-flops are more susceptible to injuries. On top of that, the open nature of the shoe makes your feet more prone to other problems, such as cuts and even infections.  Common injuries and ailments include:

  • Sprained ankles
  • Blisters
  • Infections
  • Cuts and Scrapes

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Flip-Flops and Your Feet

foot-surgery2Albert Pujols of the Los Angeles Angels has recovered from his surgery in November. He had surgery performed on his plantar plate in his foot. He is predicted to be able to play for Opening Day, but was originally expected to be able to resume playing again this month. Pujols has had surgery on his knee in 2012 but played through discomfort for the following 2013 season. Pujols is recovering but his status is not able to be fully determined.

Foot surgery is sometimes necessary. If you are struggling with a foot or ankle condition, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

When Is Surgery Necessary?

Foot and ankle surgery is generally reserved for cases in which less invasive, conservative procedures have failed to help with the problem. Some of the cases in which surgery may be necessary are:

  • Removing foot deformities like bone spurs and bunions
  • Severe arthritis that has caused bone issues
  • Cosmetic reconstruction

What Types of Surgery Are There?

The type of surgery you receive will depend on the nature of the problem you have. Some of the possible surgeries include:

  • Bunionectomy for painful bunions
  • Surgical fusion for realignment of bones
  • Neuropathy decompression surgery to treat nerve damage

Benefits of Surgery

Although surgery is usually a last resort, it can provide more complete pain relief compared to non-surgical methods and may allow you to finally resume full activity.

Surgical techniques have also become increasingly sophisticated. Techniques like endoscopic surgery allow for smaller incisions and faster recovery times.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Foot Surgery

Monday, 28 March 2016 00:00

Stress Fracture Risks Linked to Gene

stress-fracturesAccording to a new study conducted by the University of Liverpool, a new gene in the body may be linked to higher risks of stress fracture injuries. The gene, P2X7R, is believed to cause decreased bone mineral density and increased bone loss in women who are post-menopausal. Stress fractures are injuries induced by fatigue, caused by repeated pressure to the bone over a long period of time. Stress fractures are common among athletes or those who do a lot of physical activity. Research findings were still very limited, but they concluded a possible link between the gene and risk of stress fracture injuries.

Stress fractures can become painful if left untreated for an extended period of time. If you would like assistance in treating a stress fracture, visit Dr. Boris Abramov, D.P.M. of Abramov's Comprehensive Foot Care. Dr. Abramov will assess your injury and provide you with quality treatment.

Coping with Podiatric Stress Fractures

Stress Fractures occur on the foot and ankle when muscles in these areas weaken as a result of overexertion or underuse. As a result, the ankles and feet lose support when walking or running from the ground. Since these bones are not protected, they receive the full impact of each step. The stress on the feet causes the bones to form cracks.

What are Stress Fractures?

Stress Fractures are very common among those who are highly active and involved in sports or activities that make excessive use of their legs and feet. Stress fractures are especially common among:

-athletes (gymnasts, tennis players, basketball players)
-runners/joggers
-osteoporosis patients
-those who engage in high-intensity workouts

Stress Fracture Symptoms

Pain from the fractures occur in the area of the fractures, and can be either constant or periodic. The pain is usually sharp or dull, accompanied by swelling and tenderness. Engagement in any kind of high impact activity will exacerbate the pain.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office, located in Pikesville, MD. We offer the latest in diagnostic and treatment technology to meet your needs.

Read more about Stress Fractures

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