I wrote this book because too
many people suffer from foot and ankle pain unnecessarily.

~ Dr. Phil Pinsker


OR  Call today!  (724) 225- 7410 

853 Jefferson Ave-suite 2
Washington, PA, 15301

Podiatrist - Washington
853 Jefferson Ave
Washington, PA 15301
(724) 225-7410
(724) 225-9469 - fax




Posts for tag: hammertoes

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
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: 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.


By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
July 25, 2017
Category: Foot Care

Summer time finds many people turning to flip flops as their go to shoe of choice. These shoes are easy to wear—just slip them on, and they allow your feet to breathe and feel cool. However, at Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we end up treating many foot problems due to the wearing of these popular summer shoes. Although great for the pool or beach where they protect your feet from burns, cuts and fungal and bacterial infections, flip flops worn on a regular basis can result in serious foot damage. Here are some reasons not to wear them every day:

  1. Flip flops change how you walk—because you have to grip the front of the shoe with your toes to keep them on, flip flops can alter you gait and cause problems such as shin splints, Achilles tendon problems and back pain.
  2. Greater chance of tripping—due to the flimsy construction and lack of structure, patients are more likely to trip wearing flip flops. This can result in scraped toes and cuts as well as more serious issues like sprained ankles.
  3. Flip flops provide no arch support—walking flat footed all the time puts strain on the plantar fascia—the long band of tissue that extends along the bottom of your foot. This can result in heel pain and plantar fasciitis.
  4. Increased risk of toe deformities—the toe-gripping motion necessary to keep flip flops on puts your toes in a bent position. Repeatedly walking this way can start to have the same effect as wearing shoes that are too short in the toe box—toes begin to bend under and can result in the formation of a hammertoe.
  5. More stress fractures—because there is not shock absorbing padding and only a very thin rubber sole, the risk of stress fractures increases the longer you wear the flip flops.
  6. Flip flops leave your feet exposed—this means greater chance of sunburn, bug bites and poison ivy encounters.

If you are currently experiencing any foot, calf or heel pain or believe you may have injured your foot as a result of wearing flip flops, contact our Washington office for an appointment by calling: (724) 225- 7410. Our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker will examine your foot and prescribe the necessary treatment to relieve any foot pain you have.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
April 19, 2017
Category: Foot Conditions
Tags: Orthotics   hammertoes   calluses   corns  

Many times at Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we see patients with hammertoes who have waited (and suffered) a long time before coming to us because they feared surgery. Ironically, the best way to avoid surgery for a hammertoe is to come to the foot doctor as soon as you first notice the tendency of your second, third or fourth toe to bend downward into the namesake shape of a hammer. Our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker will start by examining your toe and foot and most likely getting an x-ray of the toe. Then an appropriate treatment plan can be created. There are several non-invasive ways to treat hammertoe including:

Medications—if the hammertoe is causing a good deal of pain, the podiatrist may recommend oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen to reduce pain and inflammation. Corticosteroid injections are another medication option for bringing pain relief.

Footwear Modifications—your choice of shoes can greatly aggravate or ease the pressure on a hammertoe. You will want to avoid high heels and shoes with narrow and short toe boxes that force the deformed toe up against the front of the shoe. Shoes made of soft material with a roomy toe box will be more comfortable and will lessen the irritation to the affected toe.

Padding—if corns or calluses have formed as a result of the hammertoe the foot doctor can prescribe pads to protect these areas on the toe and foot from further pressure and friction.

Splinting/strapping—the foot doctor may use splints or straps to realign the toe.

Orthotic devices—since the primary cause of hammertoe is a muscle/tendon imbalance that can be caused by a structural problem in the foot the podiatrist may suggest an orthotic device to be worn in your shoes to help control the imbalance.

What’s important to note is that hammertoe will not go away without treatment. Although it may progress slowly and not cause discomfort initially it will eventually progress to the point where the toe is rigid and surgery is the only option. If you believe you have a hammertoe or the beginnings of one, contact our Washington office for an appointment at your earliest convenience by calling: (724) 225-7410.

By Philip S. Pinsker, DPM PC
March 08, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: hammertoes   Bunions   Fractures   Ankle Sprains  

A pair of shoes that you’ve worn for a long time would have a lot to say about your feet if they could talk. Our podiatrist, Dr. Philip S. Pinsker will often examine the shoes of patients because they can reveal important clues about the structure and mechanics of your feet. Below are some things the foot doctor can determine by checking the wear pattern of your shoes:

  • Wear on the outer sole indicates that your foot turns out.
  • A bulge or excessive wear on the side of the big toe can mean you have bunion or that your shoes are too tight in the toe box.
  • If the sole of the shoe under the ball of your foot is deteriorating your heel tendons may be too tight.
  • Uppers that have toe-shaped ridges most likely belong to a patient who has hammertoes or whose shoes are too small.
  • If the wear is greater on the inner sole it means that your foot pronates or turns inward.
  • A worn look on the top of the shoe over your toes is an indication that the front of the shoe is too low for the wearer.

Why Wear Patterns Matter

Rarely is the structure and movement of a foot perfect. Abnormalities in the way the foot moves, even slight ones, can have a negative impact on foot health. If your foot tends to overpronate (roll inward excessively) this can cause strain to the arch and knee trouble. The opposite tendency, underpronation, can increase the risk of stress fractures and ankle sprains. At Philip S. Pinsker, DPM, we can make recommendations about athletic and other shoes to best suit your feet and prevent injury. In some cases custom orthotics may be helpful in correcting a structural foot issue. This will decrease pain and may help increase performance on the field or in a particular activity.

Before you throw away those old shoes and buy new ones, consult the foot doctor to see just what your shoes are saying about your feet. To learn more, contact our Washington office by calling: (724) 225-7410.