If you need a more accessible version of this website, click this button on the right. Switch to Accessible Site

We are OPEN.

Now accepting Telemedicine appointments. Please call the office for details.

Chicago (773) 477-3668
Highland Park (847) 432-6400

July 2021

Tuesday, 27 July 2021 00:00

Gout and Diet

Small urate crystals that can lodge in the joints of the big toe, causing severe pain, can be indicative of gout. Gout is a form of arthritis, and is caused by excess uric acid in the bloodstream. It may develop as a result of genetic factors, or from eating foods that have large amounts of purines. These types of foods can include shellfish, red meat, alcohol, and drinks that are made with sugar. Some of the symptoms that are associated with this ailment consist of pain and swelling in the big toe and surrounding area, and the condition may worsen at night. Patients who have high blood pressure, kidney disease, or who may be obese are more likely to develop gout. Relief may be felt after making positive lifestyle changes, such as dietary modifications that may consist of eating more fruits, vegetables, and drinking plenty of fresh water. If you are afflicted with gout, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist who can effectively treat this condition.

Gout is a painful condition that can be treated. If you are seeking treatment, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What Is Gout?

Gout is a form of arthritis that is characterized by sudden, severe attacks of pain, redness, and tenderness in the joints. The condition usually affects the joint at the base of the big toe. A gout attack can occur at any random time, such as the middle of the night while you are asleep.

Symptoms

  • Intense Joint Pain - Usually around the large joint of your big toe, and it most severe within the first four to twelve hours
  • Lingering Discomfort - Joint discomfort may last from a few days to a few weeks
  • Inflammation and Redness -Affected joints may become swollen, tender, warm and red
  • Limited Range of Motion - May experience a decrease in joint mobility

Risk Factors

  • Genetics - If family members have gout, you’re more likely to have it
  • Medications - Diuretic medications can raise uric acid levels
  • Gender/Age - Gout is more common in men until the age of 60. It is believed that estrogen protects women until that point
  • Diet - Eating red meat and shellfish increases your risk
  • Alcohol - Having more than two alcoholic drinks per day increases your risk
  • Obesity - Obese people are at a higher risk for gout

Prior to visiting your podiatrist to receive treatment for gout, there are a few things you should do beforehand. If you have gout you should write down your symptoms--including when they started and how often you experience them, important medical information you may have, and any questions you may have. Writing down these three things will help your podiatrist in assessing your specific situation so that he or she may provide the best route of treatment for you.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Everything You Need to Know About Gout
Tuesday, 27 July 2021 00:00

Everything You Need to Know About Gout

Gout, typically found in diabetic patients, is an unusually painful form of arthritis caused by elevated levels of uric acid in the bloodstream. The condition typically strikes the big joint on the big toe. It has also been known to strike the knees, elbows, fingers, ankles and wrists—generally anywhere that has a functioning, moving joint.

The high level of uric acid in a person’s bloodstream creates the condition known as hyperuricema—the main cause of gout. Genetic predisposition occurs in nine out of ten sufferers. The children of parents who suffer gout will have a two in ten chance of developing the condition as well. 

This form of arthritis, being particularly painful, is the leftover uric acid crystallizing in the blood stream. The crystallized uric acid then travels to the space between joints where they rub, causing friction when the patient moves. Symptoms include: pain, redness, swelling, and inflammation. Additional side effects may include fatigue and fever, although reports of these effects are very rare. Some patients have reported that pain may intensify when the temperature drops, such as when you sleep.

Most cases of gout are easily diagnosed by a podiatrist’s assessment of the various symptoms. Defined tests can also be performed. A blood test to detect elevated levels of uric acid is often used as well as an x-ray to diagnose visible and chronic gout.

Treatment for gout simply means eliminating symptoms. Non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs (Colchicine and other corticosteroid drugs, etc.) will quell the redness, the swelling, and the inflammation. However, managing your diet, lifestyle changes, and using preventative drugs are all helpful toward fully combating the most severe cases.

 Those that lead an inactive lifestyle are at a higher risk for gout. Any amount of exercise decreases the probability of repeat encounters with the condition. Reducing your consumption of red meat, sea food, and fructose-sweetened drinks also reduces the likelihood of chronic gout as well.

Ingesting Vitamin C, coffee, and particular dairy products can help with maintaining a healthy lifestyle. There are new drugs out on the market that inhibit the body’s production of uric acid-producing enzymes. However, reducing or eliminating your overall levels of uric acid is the best remedy to ensuring you lead a gout-free life.

Tuesday, 20 July 2021 00:00

Recovering From Tenosynovitis

Tenosynovitis is an inflammation of a tendon and its synovium, or lining. This condition can affect the feet or ankles and occur due to injury, repetitive overuse, excessive pressure on the tendon, or an infection. Tenosynovitis usually affects athletes, ballet dancers, and older adults. While recovering from this condition, it is suggested that you limit your leg and foot movement to decrease stress on the tendon and prevent further damage. Applying ice or heat to the area can help reduce swelling and pain. At home, you may need to wear a splint, brace, or walking boot, and may need crutches to get around. It is important to follow your doctor’s instructions so that you can recover fully and return to your usual activities as soon as possible. If you are experiencing ankle pain, please consult with a podiatrist. 

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Ankle pain is any condition that causes pain in the ankle. Due to the fact that the ankle consists of tendons, muscles, bones, and ligaments, ankle pain can come from a number of different conditions.

Causes

The most common causes of ankle pain include:

  • Types of arthritis (rheumatoid, osteoarthritis, and gout)
  • Ankle sprains
  • Broken ankles
  • Achilles tendinitis
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Stress fractures
  • Tarsal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis

Symptoms

Symptoms of ankle injury vary based upon the condition. Pain may include general pain and discomfort, swelling, aching, redness, bruising, burning or stabbing sensations, and/or loss of sensation.

Diagnosis

Due to the wide variety of potential causes of ankle pain, podiatrists will utilize a number of different methods to properly diagnose ankle pain. This can include asking for personal and family medical histories and of any recent injuries. Further diagnosis may include sensation tests, a physical examination, and potentially x-rays or other imaging tests.

Treatment

Just as the range of causes varies widely, so do treatments. Some more common treatments are rest, ice packs, keeping pressure off the foot, orthotics and braces, medication for inflammation and pain, and surgery.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

Read more about Ankle Pain
Tuesday, 20 July 2021 00:00

Ankle Pain

The ankle joint is the point at which the bones of the leg and foot join. This joint is crucial because it is responsible for the foot’s mobility. Ankle pain is typically the result of inflammation from an injury to bones, joint space, cartilage, ligaments, tendons, or muscles in the area. Commonly associated symptoms with ankle pain are bruising, redness, numbness, stiffness, weakness, and tingling.

The most common causes of ankle pain are sprains and injuries. Ankle sprains are one of the most common musculoskeletal injuries. Sprains occur when the ligaments of the ankle become partially or completely torn due to sudden stretching. Sprains can occur on either the inner or outer sides of the ankle joint. Usually, these injuries occur when the ankle is twisted in an activity by stepping off an uneven surface. More specific causes include rheumatoid arthritis, gout, osteoarthritis, and Achilles tendonitis.

If you are experiencing ankle pain, you should consult with your podiatrist to choose the best method of care for you. Your doctor will conduct an examination of your ankle to determine the underlying cause of the pain.

If you suffer from diabetes, you may be familiar with the increased risk of developing poorly healing wounds on your feet. Small cuts, sores, or scrapes can go unnoticed due to neuropathy or nerve damage, and heal slowly because of poor circulation. These issues can make wounds grow larger and become infected, turning into diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs). There are various classification systems for describing the general characteristics of these wounds. Doctors who use the Wagner system classify DFUs by their severity, in a graded system ranging from 0 to 5. A Grade 0 ulcer means that the skin is intact. Grade 1 signifies a superficial ulcer on the outer layers of skin. Grade 2 is a deep ulcer. Grade 3 is an ulcer with bone involvement. Grade 4 means that there is gangrene or dead tissue in the front of the foot, while Grade 5 means that the gangrene has spread to the entire foot. If you notice any wounds on your feet, please schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can treat wounds and help you manage your condition. 

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with Dr. Lee R. Stein from Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Wound Care
Tuesday, 13 July 2021 00:00

Wound Care

Diabetics must be wary of all wounds, regardless of depth or size. Diabetes, a chronic disease in which the body cannot properly use glucose the way it normally would, causes various complications that make wounds difficult to heal. Nerve damage or neuropathy will cause diabetics to have trouble feeling the pain of a blister or cut until the condition has significantly worsened or become infected. A diabetic’s weakened immune system can make even the most minor of wounds easily susceptible to infection. Diabetics are also more prone to developing narrow, clogged arteries, and are therefore more likely to develop wounds.

Wounds should be taken care of immediately after discovery, as even the smallest of wounds can become infected if enough bacteria build up within the wound.  To remove dirt, wounds should be first rinsed under running water only. Soap, hydrogen peroxide, or iodine can irritate the injury and should be avoided. To prevent infection, apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover it with a bandage. The bandage should be changed daily. The skin around the wound may be cleaned with soap.

To prevent further exacerbation, see a doctor—especially if you have diabetes. Minor skin conditions can become larger problems if not properly inspected. As the wound heals, make sure to avoid applying pressure to the affected area.

Monday, 12 July 2021 00:00

Plantar Warts Can Be Treated!

Plantar warts are small growths that develop on parts of the feet that bear weight. They're typically found on the bottom of the foot. Don't live with plantar warts, and call us today!

Tuesday, 06 July 2021 00:00

Sesamoiditis

Sesamoiditis is a condition in which the sesamoid bones in the forefoot become inflamed from physical activity. Sesamoid bones are bones that are not connected to other bones but are located in tendons or muscle. Two of these sesamoid bones are very small and located on the underside of the foot near the big toe. Athletes such as runners, baseball and football players, and dancers are likely to experience sesamoiditis. Those with high arched feet, flat feet, or runners who run on the ball of their foot are also prone to suffer from sesamoiditis.

Symptoms include pain or throbbing on the ball of the foot near the big toe. The pain generally starts with a mild throbbing but gradually builds up to shooting pain. Bruising, swelling, and redness are possible, but in most cases, these symptoms are not present. However, moving the big toe can result in pain and difficulty.

To conduct a diagnosis, the podiatrist will examine the ball of the foot and big toe. They will look for any outliers and check the movement of the toe. X-rays will be taken to rule out any other conditions and ensure that it is sesamoiditis.

Treatment for sesamoiditis is generally mild and includes rest, anti-inflammatory and pain medication, and ice treatments to deal with the swelling and pain. Orthotics may be needed with people who have flat or high arched feet to relieve pressure off the bones. In some cases the toe will be taped and immobilized to allow healing. The podiatrist may also decide to use a steroid injection to help with swelling as well. If you have sesamoiditis, you shouldn’t engage in any intensive activity, as it may inflame the area and worsen your pain. If the sesamoid bone has fractured, surgery may be required to remove the sesamoid bone.

If you are suffering from sesamoiditis or are experiencing symptoms similar to sesamoiditis, you should stop all physical activity that puts strain on the area. Furthermore you should see a podiatrist for a diagnosis to see if you have sesamoiditis.

Tuesday, 06 July 2021 00:00

Sesamoid Bones and Injuries

The sesamoids are two small, pea-shaped bones found just under the base of the big toe. The sesamoids are embedded in a tendon, allowing you to move the big toes and acting as shock absorbers in the foot while you walk and run. Though these bones are quite small, they can be easily injured. The area around the sesamoid bones may become inflamed due to injury or overuse, leading to sesamoiditis. Over time, these bones may become unable to bear the load placed on them and could even develop tiny stress fractures. A sudden injury to the bones can cause them to fully fracture. If you have pain, swelling, or bruising in the ball of your foot, schedule an appointment with a podiatrist who can diagnose and treat various sesamoid injuries. 

Sesamoiditis is an unpleasant foot condition characterized by pain in the balls of the feet. If you think you’re struggling with sesamoiditis, contact Dr. Lee R. Stein of Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC. Our doctor will treat your condition thoroughly and effectively.

Sesamoiditis

Sesamoiditis is a condition of the foot that affects the ball of the foot. It is more common in younger people than it is in older people. It can also occur with people who have begun a new exercise program, since their bodies are adjusting to the new physical regimen. Pain may also be caused by the inflammation of tendons surrounding the bones. It is important to seek treatment in its early stages because if you ignore the pain, this condition can lead to more serious problems such as severe irritation and bone fractures.

Causes of Sesamoiditis

  • Sudden increase in activity
  • Increase in physically strenuous movement without a proper warm up or build up
  • Foot structure: those who have smaller, bonier feet or those with a high arch may be more susceptible

Treatment for sesamoiditis is non-invasive and simple. Doctors may recommend a strict rest period where the patient forgoes most physical activity. This will help give the patient time to heal their feet through limited activity. For serious cases, it is best to speak with your doctor to determine a treatment option that will help your specific needs.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Highland Park, and Uptown, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Sesamoiditis
Connect with us
Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC: Lee R. Stein, DPM on Facebook Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC: Lee R. Stein, DPM on Twitter Chicago Podiatry Blog

Lake Shore Foot & Ankle, PC Latest Podiatry Blog Posts