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Podiatrist - Washington
853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
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Posts for tag: Bunions

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
June 27, 2018
Category: Foot Pain

At Philip S. Pinsker, DPM patients come to us for a number of disorders that are making their feet hurt, such as bunions, plantar fasciitis and ingrown toenails. Sometimes, however, the source of foot pain is less evident. That’s when our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker, has to put on his Sherlock Holmes hat and do a little sleuthing. Some of the hidden reasons he finds for foot pain may surprise you.

Wrong shoe size—many patients continue to buy the same size shoe year after year. As you age, it is not unusual for your foot to get a little bigger, necessitating an increase by a half or even whole size in your footwear. Pregnancy can also result in foot growth that is permanent. It has been estimated that up to 90% of people may be wearing shoes that are too small for them.

Weight gain—it surprises patients to find out that just putting on a few extra pounds—not even enough for your doctor to comment on or your clothes to feel tighter—can make your feet hurt. That’s because when you walk, your feet bear the impact of 2-3 times your body weight and when you run, it’s 5 times the weight of your body.

Bought shoes at the wrong time—no, we don’t mean you missed the sale. If you shop first thing in the morning, your feet are at their smallest size. As the day goes on, feet swell. Shoes that felt fine when you put them on at the start of the day may be causing foot pain by the time you are leaving work. Make sure there is a half inch between your longest toe and the front of your shoe and that you can insert a finger between your heel and heel counter when purchasing shoes. And, shop at the end of the day whenever possible.

Too much time barefoot—your feet receive a substantial amount of impact just from everyday walking around. If you spend much of your time without shoes, your feet are not cushioned in any way. In addition, walking barefoot often cause feet to flatten which can result in pain to the arch and heel.

What’s important is that if you are experiencing foot pain you contact our Washington office (724-225- 7410) for an appointment sooner rather than later. Generally, the earlier on the podiatrist detects the cause of your pain the less invasive the treatment and the faster the healing.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
May 09, 2018

As the weather gets warmer here in Washington and patients begin to trade heavy socks and boots for sandals and open-toed shoes, you may find that it’s the first time in a while that you have really looked at your feet. Now is a good time to examine your feet and see if there are any issues that need to be taken care of. Below are some of the more common issues patients bring to Philip S. Pinsker, DPM:

“I’ve got this strange spot between my toes.” When you think of skin cancer your feet may not be the first place you think of, but it is equally able to develop there as on other parts of your body. If you have a freckle or mole that you never saw before or that has changed in size, shape or color since the last time you looked it, bring it to the attention of our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker. Another possible cause of something odd between your toes is athlete’s foot which is caused by exposure to a fungus and first shows up between the toes.

“There’s a bump on the side of my little toe.” Most people are familiar with bunions, which are characterized by a protruding bump on the outside of the big toe. It is also possible to have the same issue on your little toe and then it is called a bunionette or Tailor’s bunion. The cause is the same—a biomechanical problem that causes the joint of the toe to move out of place. The foot doctor has several avenues of treatment available for bunions and Tailor’s bunions and the sooner treatment begins the better.

“I have a toenail that looks terrible—it’s discolored and all crumbly at the edges.” In most cases, this is the sign of a fungal toenail infection. If you had a case of athlete’s foot that went untreated for a while it may have spread to your toenail causing the fungal infection. This type of disorder is also spread by direct contact and can be picked up at a gym or nail salon.

If you have any of the above scenarios or you have noticed anything else unusual about the shape or appearance of your toes, feet or ankles, make an appointment with us by calling: (724) 225- 7410 and get your feet sandal-ready in time for summer.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
April 11, 2018

April is Foot Health Awareness Month and we at Philip S. Pinsker, DPM thought this would be a good time to help patients be more conscious of the health and well being of their feet by paying attention to them in the many different settings we find ourselves in regularly.

At Work—most of our day is spent doing some kind of work. Whether you are in an office, on a construction site, in a factory or taking care of a home and children, your shoe choice can cause or prevent foot problems. Make sure you wear protective footwear if your job requires it. For those on their feet all day, avoid high heels and narrow toe boxes that can encourage foot deformities such as bunions and hammertoes. And, no matter what your job, everyone needs shoes that fit properly and provide adequate arch support.

At Home—limit or eliminate the time you go barefoot to decrease the risk of cuts and puncture wounds. Make washing, drying, moisturizing and powdering your feet a daily habit and check your feet regularly for changes in size, color or shape, and any unusual bruising, bumps, rashes or moles.

At the Grocery Store—choose foods that are nutrient dense and low in calories and limit bad fats to help you get to or keep a healthy weight. Excess pounds mean an extra strain on your feet and ankles. If you suffer from inflammatory conditions such as plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis, investigate foods known to reduce the body’s inflammatory response such as berries, fatty fish like salmon and mackerel and dark leafy greens.

On the Field/Track/Court—regular exercise is also a plus for your feet. It helps with weight control and overall fitness as well as improving flexibility and range of motion. Wear shoes designed specifically for the sport you do and always inspect surfaces for holes, debris or other obstacles that can cause a fall or ankle sprain.

On Vacation—good foot health doesn’t take time off! Follow the same care routine and health tips while away that you do at home. Use sunscreen, wear shower shoes or flip flops in public places and pack some moleskin to help ward off blisters.

In any situation, if you find yourself experiencing foot pain, make an appointment promptly at our Washington office (724-225 7410) so that our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker, can evaluate your condition and recommend the appropriate treatment.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
April 04, 2018
Category: Proper footwear

Have you checked your running shoes lately? Even shoes that are not showing obvious signs of wear and tear should be replaced every year or every 300-500 miles. At Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we find that many feet and ankle injuries to runners are due to having inappropriate or improperly fitted running shoes. Below are 6 tips to consider when purchasing a new pair of shoes:

  1. Fit existing foot conditions. If you have a foot disorder or deformity, such as bunions, flat feet or heel spurs, it is important that you choose a running shoe that will accommodate your condition. Have your feet and ankles evaluated by our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker, before you go to the shoe store. The foot doctor can make recommendations based on your individual foot for features that will increase comfort and decrease the risk of injury. In some cases, a custom orthotic device may be prescribed.
  2. Go with the pros. For serious runners, it’s best to go to a sports shoe specialty store and have your foot fitted by a professional who knows running shoes. Many stores will even have a treadmill for you to run on that can record and analyze your gait and pronation to aid in a more accurate fit.
  3. Shop prepared. Wear the type of sock you will use when running to try on the shoes. Bring any orthotics with you as well. It’s best to shop for shoes at the end of the day because that is when your feet tend to be at their largest.
  4. Check the toe box. Make sure there is ample room for toes to wiggle in the shoe. Avid runners whose shoes cramp the toes are more likely to end up with ingrown or bruised nails. In addition, the area that houses the ball of your foot should be somewhat flexible to allow for the natural movement of your foot when you land each step.
  5. Look for midsole cushioning and arch support. Appropriate shock absorption and cushioning in the center of the shoe can help ease the strain on your heels and ankles and help prevent plantar fasciitis and heel pain.
  6. Take your time. Try on both shoes and spend ample time walking and even running in the store before you finalize your purchase. There should be no rubbing, tightness or discomfort from the moment you leave the store.

If you have specific questions about the right kind of running shoe for your feet or find that you are in pain after running, contact our Washington office for an appointment by calling: (724) 225-7410.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
September 20, 2017
Category: Senior Foot Care

As patients age certain foot care issues become more prominent. Our feet (just like the rest of our bodies) begin to show signs of wear and foot pain may become more common as fat pads wear down and the cartilage between joints deteriorates. In addition, certain systemic diseases, such as diabetes and arthritis may first show signs in the feet. At Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we believe there is much senior patients can do to be proactive in the care of their feet. Below are some suggestions to help you continue to live an active lifestyle free from foot pain and discomfort.

Practice good basic foot hygiene—wash your feet daily with warm water and a mild soap. Dry feet completely (especially between the toes). Use a rich moisturizer to prevent dry, cracking skin on the soles and heels. If your feet tend to perspire heavily, use a foot powder to help absorb moisture.

Avoid going barefoot—this will greatly reduce the risk of injury from cuts and punctures and also of getting a fungal infection (since these are spread by direct contact).

Wear good shoes—your shoes play a huge role in the health of your feet. Wearing shoes with good arch support can help prevent flatfeet and heel pain. Firm ankle support can keep ankles from twisting. Keep heels low and toe boxes wide to avoid aggravating deformities such as bunions and hammertoes. Do not keep shoes that are worn out.

Reduce the risk of falls—September 22nd is Falls Prevention month. Check out the Council on Aging’s website: www.ncoa.org/healthy-aging/falls-prevention/falls-prevention-awareness-day/. It offers many tips on how to avoid falls, which can damage your lower extremities and are the number one cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries in older adults.

Engage in healthy habits—your feet will benefit from an overall healthy lifestyle. Exercise regularly for fitness, stamina and balance. Eat a diet that is rich in bone-strengthening calcium, fruits and vegetables and strive to maintain a healthy weight. Don’t smoke because it has a negative impact on your circulation.

Don’t ignore foot pain—if your toes, ankles or feet hurt, make an appointment at our Washington office by calling:  (724) 225- 7410 so that our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker, can examine your feet and find the problem. Diagnosing foot problems in their earliest stages prevents falls and long term disability. It also usually results in less invasive treatments and more successful outcomes.