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Posts for: October, 2018

By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
October 19, 2018
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: Warts  

What Causes Warts?

Got foot warts? Nearly everyone will have a wart at some point in their lives. Warts are typically small, hard skin growths caused by an infection with humanpallilloma virus. Foot warts are treatable. Foot warts are among the most common dermatologic conditions podiatrists treat. Read on to learn about the causes of warts.

An HPV Infection

Common warts are caused by by an HPV infection. Over 100 types of HPV exist. Certain types of HPV infection cause cervical cancer. Some types of HPV infection cause foot warts, while others cause warts that appear on the face, neck, or hands. Of the 100 types of HPV, about 60 cause common warts on areas such as the hands or feet.

Skin-To-Skin Contact

Wart viruses are contagious. You can get foot warts from skin-to-skin contact with people who have warts. However, not all HPV strains are highly contagious. You can get the wart virus by touching an object that another person's wart touched, such as clothing, towels, shoes, or exercise equipment.

Breaks in Your Skin

HPV infects the top layer of skin and usually enters the body in an area of damaged or cut skin. Cuts from shaving can provide an avenue for infection. Getting a scrape can also bring on common warts. Foot warts are very common in swimmers whose feet are scratched by rough pool surfaces.

A Weak Immune System

In most cases, your immune system defeats an HPV infection before it creates a wart. Someone with a weakened immune system is more vulnerable and therefore more likely to develop warts. Immune systems can be weakened by HIV or by immunosuppressant drugs used after organ transplants.

If you want to get rid of foot warts, see your podiatrist as soon as possible. Many types of effective wart treatments are available. They include salicylic acid, cantharidin, cryotherapy, laser treatment, and surgery. Your podiatrist can help you get rid of foot warts once and for all!

By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
October 08, 2018
Category: Foot Condition
Tags: Ingrown Toenail  

In many cases, an ingrown toenail can be easily clipped away before it becomes a problem. But you can’t always treat an ingrown toenail on your own—you may need an experienced podiatrist to remove it to ensure the ongoing safety and good health of your feet. Find out how a foot doctor at Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute in Butte and Bozeman, MT can help.

What Is an Ingrown Toenail?
An ingrown toenail is one that points into the surface of the skin instead of growing above the skin’s surface. This most commonly happens at the edges of the nail bed. It can be an easy issue to correct—simply soak the foot to help release the nail and then clip it off. But in some cases, the nail cuts into the skin and is more difficult to remove. Whenever there’s a wound, there’s a risk of infection, which may have to be treated by a medical professional if it doesn’t heal properly.

When You Can’t Treat an Ingrown Toenail Yourself
It’s important to use sterile tools and careful techniques to remove some ingrown toenails, which is why it’s best to leave it to your Butte and Bozeman, MT podiatrist. This is especially true for diabetic patients who may have problems with wounds in their lower extremities. A foot doctor can carefully remove the nail and treat the infection.

Professional Treatments for an Ingrown Toenail
One of the most common causes of ingrown toenails is cutting the nails too short. Regular visits to a podiatrist for trimmings will reduce this risk. If a toenail is already piercing the skin, your foot doctor can do minor surgery to remove it from the root, treat it for infection with antibiotics, and wrap it for healing.

Taking Care of Your Feet
Sometimes you have to get help from a doctor for even a relatively minor foot issue like an ingrown toenail. Talk to a podiatrist at Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute in Butte or Bozeman, MT if you are dealing with an ingrown toenail. Call (406) 782-2278 for an appointment with Dr. Dallin Greene or Dr. Nathan Judd.

By Big Sky Foot and Ankle Institute
October 04, 2018
Category: Foot Care
Tags: Foot Care   Heel Spurs  

Have you been experiencing any heel pain or bothersome tenderness without any obvious cause? Although heel spurs themselves sometimes do not cause acute discomfort, they are frequently associated with the painful inflammation known as plantar fasciitis, a condition commonly described as feeling like a knife is wrenching through your foot. Read below for more information on the typical causes, symptoms, and treatments of heel spurs.

What is a Heel Spur?

A heel spur is often the result of overstraining foot muscles and ligaments, overstretching the plantar fascia (the thick band of tissue that connects the heel bone to the toes), and repeatedly tearing the heel bone membrane. From these actions arises a calcium deposit on the underside of the heel bone. Risk factor for developing the condition include:

  • Possessing any walking gait abnormalities
  • Regularly running or jogging on hard surfaces
  • Wearing poorly fitted or overly worn shoes
  • Wearing shoes that lack arch support
  • Being excessively overweight or obese

What are The Symptoms?

Heel spurs do not carry many symptoms by themselves. However, they are often related to other afflictions, most typically plantar fasciitis. The most common sign of this combo of conditions is a feeling of chronic pain along the bottom or back of the heel, especially during periods of walking, running, or jogging. If you are experiencing this recurring inflammation, it is a good idea to visit your local podiatrist's office and inquire about undergoing an x-ray or ultrasound examination of the foot.

What are the Treatment Options?

The solutions to heel spurs are generally centered around decreasing inflammation and avoiding re-injury. They include:

  • Applying ice on the inflammation
  • Performing stretch exercises
  • Wearing orthotic devices or shoe inserts to relieve pressure off of the spur
  • Taking anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen to relieve pain
  • In extreme cases, surgery can be performed on chronically inflamed spurs

If you are dealing with symptoms of heel spurs or pain in your feet, turn to a podiatrist so that we can get you back on your feet. Don't ignore your pain.