Did you know that 75% of Americans will experience foot problems in their lifetime? The human foot is a complex structure made up of 26 bones, 33 joints, and 107 ligaments. Together your feet make up 1/4 of the bones in your body! I would say that’s complex!
And my goal as a podiatrist is to keep you on your feet and keep those feet healthy! To get more technical, podiatry is a branch of medicine devoted to the study, diagnosis, and treatment of disorders of not just the foot, but the ankle and lower leg as well.
So I wanted to take some time today and talk about general guidelines for when you should call a podiatrist. I have often seen in my practice that people neglect their feet until they are in great pain or great trouble. Take care of your feet and they will take care of you!
The following are guidelines for when you should call a podiatrist:
- You have persistent pain in your feet or ankles.
- You have noticeable change to your nails or skin.
- Your feet are severely cracking, scaling, or peeling.
- There are signs of bacterial infection, including:
- Increased pain, swelling, redness, tenderness, or heat.
- Red streaks extending from the affected area.
- Discharge of pus.
- Fever of 100°F (37.78°C) or higher with no other cause.
- Symptoms that do not improve after two weeks of treatment with a non-prescription product.
- Spreading of the infection to other areas, such as the nail bed, or skin under the nail, the nail itself, or the surrounding skin.
- Your toenail is getting thicker and causing you discomfort.
- You have heel pain accompanied by a fever, redness (sometimes warmth) or numbness or tingling in your heel, or persistent pain without putting any weight or pressure on your heel, or the pain is not alleviated by ice, aspirin, (or ibuprofen or acetaminophen).
- You have diabetes or certain diseases associated with poor circulation and you develop athlete’s foot. People with diabetes are at increased risk for a severe bacterial infection of the foot and leg if they have athlete’s foot.
- Any injury to the foot, ankle, or lower leg
- To get a second opinion before you have a foot or leg amputated
Use these guidelines to help you make good decisions regarding your foot health. And remember, take care of your feet and they will take care of you!
If you are looking for a podiatrist in the Sarasota-Bradenton area, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Lasday right away for a thorough and professional evaluation, either in his Bradenton Podiatry office or Sarasota Podiatry office.