Athlete’s foot (tinea pedis) is a specific type of fungal infection that typically begins between the toes. A common cause of athlete's foot is sweaty feet that are confined to tight shoes for a long period of time. Signs and symptoms of athlete’s foot include a scaly rash that usually causes itching, stinging and burning. Athlete’s foot is contagious and should be carefully monitored and treated. Athlete’s foot can easily be treated with antifungal medications, but the infection is likely to recur. Prescription medications also are available.
Arthritic Big Toe
Hallux rigidus is arthritis of the joint at the base of the big toe. It is the most common arthritic condition of the foot, affecting 1 in 40 people over the age of 50 and typically developing in those over age 30. Big toe arthritis tends to affect women more than men.
Most patients feel pain in the big toe joint while active, especially when pushing off to walk. Often, there is swelling around the big toe joint or difficulty moving and bending the toe. A bump, like a bunion or bone spur, can develop on top of the big toe joint and be aggravated by rubbing against the inside of a shoe.
Surgical Treatments may include Bone Spur Removal (Cheilectomy), Joint Resurfacing (Interpositional Arthroplasty), Joint Replacement (Arthroplasty), and Joint Fusion (Arthrodesis).
A bunion is a bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of your big toe. They can develop from an inherited structural defect, excess stress on your foot, or can result from an existing medical condition.
For the most part, bunions require no medical treatment. However, if you are experiencing one or more of the following, a podiatrist can help alleviate your symptoms.
Corns are small calluses that usually occur on the feet and on or between toes in weight-bearing areas. Corns are usually caused by ill-fitting shoes and can grow into unsightly, hardened patches that become a nuisance.
Although many people consider calluses to be a simple skin problem, it is actually an indicator of bone problems. In the foot, calluses are typically seen on the heels, balls of the feet, and on the outer side of the big toe. Calluses have their own nerves and sacks of fluid that act as cushioning, which can cause pain over time.
Since nearly one-fourth of the bones in our body are in our feet, fractures of the foot are common and rarely debilitating.
There are two types of fractures. A stress fracture typically occurs in the space between the toes and middle of the foot, usually as a result of a physical activity gone awry. These fractures are only on the surface of the bone. General bone fractures extend through the bone. These injuries are usually caused by trauma to the foot.
Fungal infections in the toe or fingernails can appear as thickened, discolored, or disfigured. While it may seem like the condition is just an aesthetic concern, fungal infections can lead to worsened symptoms and pain. Diabetes, a weakened immune system, and the normal aging process are all causes associated with fungal infections. It is more likely for senior citizens and adults to develop a fungal infection as opposed to children.
Often we associate arthritis with older patients who have lived an active lifestyle. Gout, on the other hand, can affect anyone. Gout is a common form of arthritis that is known for its sudden attacks of pain and joint tenderness. Joints that are affected by gout are often hot to the touch, swollen, and very tender. While symptoms are not chronic, it is essential to take preventative measures to manage gout, as its side effects can be debilitating and intolerable.
Hammertoe is a deformity where one or both joints of the second, third, fourth or fifth toes begin to bend outside of their normal alignment. Pressure can begin to weigh heavy on the toes as you wear shoes, which is where pain and other symptoms develop.
Hammertoes typically begin with small symptoms and deformities and continue to worsen with time. In its beginning stages, hammertoes are often impressionable which means they can be controlled using minimal treatment. It is important to know the signs of hammertoes to get them evaluated early. If left untreated, hammertoes can become more firm and difficult to manipulate, requiring surgery.
Ingrown toenails are a common condition where the corner of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding the toe (usually the big toe). Ingrown toenails can be very uncomfortable, painful, and can easily lead to an infection in the toe.
A neuroma can occur in many areas of the body when nerve tissue thickens. Morton’s neuroma is the most typical neuroma that occurs in the foot and it occurs between the third and fourth toes. Also known as an intermetatarsal neuroma, the name describes its location in the ball of the foot.
Compression and irritation typically cause the nerve tissue to thicken. This pressure creates inflammation of the nerve, ultimately causing untreatable damage to the nerves in the foot.
Plantar warts are caused by the HPV virus and cause tiny cuts and breaks on the bottom of your feet.
While most plantar warts are not a major health concern, it is advised you see a doctor to have the warts examined and removed. Some symptoms include small, rough lesions on the base of the foot, calluses in one spot, and tenderness when walking or standing for long periods of time.
Sesamoids are two pea-shaped bones located in the ball of the foot, beneath the big toe joint. Sesamoiditis refers to inflammation of the flexor tendon surrounding these bones and is caused by increased pressure to the ball of the foot. Often, sesamoiditis is associated with a dull, longstanding pain beneath the big toe joint. The pain comes and goes, usually occurring with certain shoes or certain activities. Sesamoiditis is especially common among certain types of athletes and dancers. This can be treated conservatively with paddings, orthotics, and/or injections. If the pain persists surgical removal of the sesamoid can be accomplished.