Foot News Blog

Ingrown toenails are problems most people deal with at some point in their lives.  Information available online as to home remedies include cutting a "V" in the center of the end of the toenail, shoving pieces of cotton under the edges of the nail, and cutting the toenail straight across.  Most all ingrown toenails are caused by the edges of the nail digging down in to the skin.  While some shoes and nail trimming habits can contribute to the development of ingrown toenails, most ingrown toenails are inherited.  SO, should you trim the nail straight across?  Does this help in any way?  There isn't anything one can do to prevent the curvature of the nail.  Trimming the nail may keep the skin edges from relaxing, thereby causing future nail growth to push in to the skin, the best rule of thumb is to cut the nail with clippers as far as the clipper will grow.  If it doesn't hurt to round the edges of the nail, then trim this out.  What should be avoided is cutting a piece of nail and yanking the entire edge of nail out.  Removal of an ingrown toenail is done in the office, takes all of about 5 minutes, involves anesthetizing the base of the toe, removal of the offending nail border(s), and applying a chemical with the intent this portion of the nail does not regrow.  Recurrence rate is ranges from 8-10%.  There is no down time or limitation of activities following this procedure.  For your ingrown toenail problems, give us a call!

Fashion dictates women must wear shoes that can cause significant foot pain; shoes that usually include open toes and some sort of a heel.  Whether working in retail, banking, or in the corporate world, women's dress shoes are NOT conducive to comfort.  The most common complaint of this population is that of pain in the base of the 2nd toe.  In most people, the ball of the 2nd toe (or 2nd metatarsal) sticks out further than the ball of the 1st or 3rd toe.  As a result, when pushing off the ball of the toe, more weight is carried under the ball of the 2nd toe than the others, creating the potential for pain and inflammation.  Women's dress shoes contribute to this painful condition for two reasons.  Any shoe with the heel elevated higher than the front of the foot places more weight to the front of the foot.  The higher the heel, the more weight applied to the balls of the toes.  Also, the amount of cushioning below the balls of the toes with these shoes is minimal, at best.  In severe cases, a ligament on the bottom of the ball of the toe, called the plantar plate, can tear, causing chronic pain and potential dislocation of the toe.

While it may require some rest and pressure reduction below the ball of your toe for a while, this problem is treatable with a number of treatment options.  For starters, wear sturdy, stiff soled athletic shoes whenever possible, apply an ice pack to the top AND bottom of the balls of the toes every 3-4 hours, and take an anti-inflammatory such as Aleve or Advil.  If you experience pain below the ball of your second toe, give us a call. 


Recent studies suggest it is possible that pain tolerance is lower in redheads.  A recent University of Louisville study suggests those with red hair, which typically is accompanied by fair skin, have a lower pain tolerance than those without red hair.  The exact mechanism of why is not yet understood, but theories abound.... 

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Recent technologic advances have included a 3 dimensional printer, capable of reproducing scanned objects identical to the original; not on paper but an actual model.  For an amazing demonstration of a 3 dimensional printer, click here.

More recently, the composite material used to manufacture the 3-D produced copy has been altered to allow use in the body.  A portion of a jaw bone was reproduced and surgically implanted to give someone a jaw.  Cick here for more information.  Even more recent advances have included 3-D replicas of arthritic joints, to allow surgeons to visualize and perhaps "practice" on the same bones before a surgery.  3-D reconstructions of CT scans have been around for years, however, this was still a 2 dimensional view of the surface of the scanned area.  Now an actual reproduction can be generated to fit exactly as it should.  Imagine being involved in a traumatic injury, losing a portion of the bone around your eye socket or a section of your skull.  Now, these bones can be reproduced using a 3-D printer in absolute PERFECT symmetry to the opposite side of the body!

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