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North Andover (978) 686-7623
Tewksbury (978) 640-1010

October 2021

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a circulatory disease that narrows arteries and restricts blood flow in the extremities. This can cause cramping in the legs when exercising, which usually subsides when you stop. PAD can also cause pain, numbness, swelling, and discoloration in the feet, and can be a prelude to more dangerous complications. One of the tests a podiatrist may use to test the blood flow through arteries and veins is a duplex ultrasound. There are two components to a duplex ultrasound. The first is traditional ultrasound which creates an image by bouncing sound waves off of blood vessels. The second is doppler ultrasound which measures sound waves reflected off of flowing blood to visualize its direction and speed. Duplex ultrasounds are non-invasive. The patient remains still as the podiatrist hovers a wand (transducer) over the area to be tested which sends out sound waves. These sound waves are then reflected back and translated into images. To learn more about PAD and various ways to test for it, please make an appointment with your local podiatrist.

Vascular testing plays an important part in diagnosing disease like peripheral artery disease. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, or diabetes, consult with one of our podiatrists from Foot Health Center of Merrimack Valley. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Vascular Testing?

Vascular testing checks for how well blood circulation is in the veins and arteries. This is most often done to determine and treat a patient for peripheral artery disease (PAD), stroke, and aneurysms. Podiatrists utilize vascular testing when a patient has symptoms of PAD or if they believe they might. If a patient has diabetes, a podiatrist may determine a vascular test to be prudent to check for poor blood circulation.

How Is it Conducted?

Most forms of vascular testing are non-invasive. Podiatrists will first conduct a visual inspection for any wounds, discoloration, and any abnormal signs prior to a vascular test.

 The most common tests include:

  • Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) examination
  • Doppler examination
  • Pedal pulses

These tests are safe, painless, and easy to do. Once finished, the podiatrist can then provide a diagnosis and the best course for treatment.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in North Andover, and Tewksbury, MA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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Tuesday, 19 October 2021 00:00

Flip-Flops Can Be Bad for Kids’ Feet

Many children wear flip-flops, especially during the warm summer months. However, those flip-flops can impact their feet long after the end of summer vacation. Heel and arch pain are common complaints among children who wear flip-flops. The heel bone continues to grow even into the midteen years and requires adequate cushioning and support. Flip-flops provide no support to the heel, causing the growth plates in the heel bones to become inflamed, tender, and painful. Frequent flip-flop wearing also makes various foot and ankle problems, such as Achilles tendonitis, ankle sprains, broken toes, plantar warts, and athlete’s foot more likely. If your child complains of foot pain, it is suggested that you schedule them an appointment with a podiatrist. 

Flip-flops are not always the best choice of footwear. If you have any concerns about your feet or ankles, contact one of our podiatrists from Foot Health Center of Merrimack Valley. Our doctors will assist you with all of your foot and ankle needs.

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; they're 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 regularly 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

I like Wearing Flip-Flops. Are There Safe Alternatives?

When buying flip-flops, try to find ones that have sturdy soles and that are made of high-quality materials that will support for your feet.  These flip-flops will cost more but will also last longer as a result.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in North Andover, and Tewksbury, MA .  We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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Suffering from this type of pain? You may have the foot condition known as Morton's neuroma. Morton's neuroma may develop as a result of ill-fitting footwear and existing foot deformities. We can help.

Tuesday, 12 October 2021 00:00

What Is Peripheral Artery Disease?

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) causes a narrowing of arteries in the limbs that are not close to the center of the body, such as the legs and feet. These arteries, which carry blood from the heart, become blocked by a buildup of plaque and cannot deliver adequate blood supply to muscles and tissues. This can result in muscle cramping while exercising (claudication) that does not go away after you stop. You may also experience slow-healing foot wounds and slower growth of leg hair and toenails. The skin on your legs may also have a shiny appearance. PAD is potentially dangerous because it increases the risk of a heart attack or stroke. Also, tissue which does not receive enough blood can become infected or die (gangrene) which, left untreated, may lead to a life-threatening blood infection called sepsis. It is important to pay attention and see a podiatrist if your body gives you any warning signs of PAD.

Peripheral artery disease can pose a serious risk to your health. It can increase the risk of stroke and heart attack. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, consult with one of our podiatrists from Foot Health Center of Merrimack Valley. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is when arteries are constricted due to plaque (fatty deposits) build-up. This results in less blood flow to the legs and other extremities. The main cause of PAD is atherosclerosis, in which plaque builds up in the arteries.

Symptoms

Symptoms of PAD include:

  • Claudication (leg pain from walking)
  • Numbness in legs
  • Decrease in growth of leg hair and toenails
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Sores and wounds on legs and feet that won’t heal
  • Coldness in one leg

It is important to note that a majority of individuals never show any symptoms of PAD.

Diagnosis

While PAD occurs in the legs and arteries, Podiatrists can diagnose PAD. Podiatrists utilize a test called an ankle-brachial index (ABI). An ABI test compares blood pressure in your arm to you ankle to see if any abnormality occurs. Ultrasound and imaging devices may also be used.

Treatment

Fortunately, lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, managing cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and quitting smoking, can all treat PAD. Medications that prevent clots from occurring can be prescribed. Finally, in some cases, surgery may be recommended.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in North Andover, and Tewksbury, MA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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Tuesday, 05 October 2021 00:00

Where Does Your Ankle Hurt?

If you are suffering from ankle pain, one of the most important questions to answer is: where does your ankle hurt? The location of the ankle pain provides key information to help diagnose the problem. Pain along the inside of the ankle may indicate an eversion ankle sprain, fracture, tibial posterior tendonitis, or tarsal tunnel syndrome. Pain along the outside of the ankle could mean that you have a sprain, sinus tarsi syndrome, peroneal tendonitis, or a peroneal tendon dislocation. Pain at the front of the ankle is often a symptom of tibialis anterior tendonitis or ankle impingement. Pain at the back of the ankle might indicate an Achilles tendon injury, bursitis, or Sever’s disease. A podiatrist can examine your injured ankle, determine the cause of your pain, and find the right treatment for you. 

Ankle pain can have many different causes and the pain may potentially be serious. If you have ankle pain, consult with one of our podiatrists from Foot Health Center of Merrimack Valley. Our doctors 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 North Andover, and Tewksbury, MA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

 

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