Bunions are a bony protrusion on the side of the foot near the base of the big toe. Bunions can cause pain and discomfort throughout the day as they rub against the inside of the shoes, which causes friction and inflammation. Several treatment options are available. We can help you manage your bunions at Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco, CA. Our experienced podiatrists, Dr. Daniel Alberts, Dr. Richard Rolfes, and Dr. Jasper Lee, can discuss different treatment options with you.
What are Bunions?
A bunion is a bone deformity that develops on the side of the foot just below the big toe. The joint connecting the big toe to the foot is known as the metatarsophalangeal joint. When this joint moves out of place, it causes the big toe to slant toward the smaller ones. This movement also causes the metatarsophalangeal joint to protrude at the side of the foot and form a bunion. Friction produced from footwear rubbing against the feet can irritate and inflame bunions, which leads to discomfort and pain.
Bunions will not heal without treatment. They can also lead to other foot problems over time. For example, untreated bunions can eventually lead to the development of hammertoe, which is another foot condition associated with toe deformities. Additionally, bunions can also lead to the development of bursitis or arthritis in the feet. At our office in San Francisco, CA, our podiatrists can recommend treatments for alleviating bunion pain, correcting the condition, and preventing further foot problems.
Treatments to Manage Bunions
One of the main causes of bunions is wearing tight-fitting shoes that squeeze the toes together. Wearing footwear with enough room for the toes to move can help prevent bunions. For patients with bunions, wearing supportive shoes with sufficient room and cushioning can help reduce friction and minimize the discomfort it causes. There are many ways to treat bunions, including:
In some cases, surgery might be needed to effectively treat bunions and prevent additional foot problems. Bunion surgery, referred to as bunionectomy, can be performed to remove bunions and realign the metatarsophalangeal toe joint so bunions do not form again.
We can help you manage your bunions. Dr. Alberts, Dr. Rolfes, or Dr. Lee can develop a treatment plan specifically for you. To schedule an appointment with one of our podiatrists, call Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco at (415) 731-6700.
Ingrown toenails are painful, distracting, irritating, and immobilizing. Fortunately, the podiatrists here at Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco, CA, Drs. Daniel Alberts, Richard Rolfes and Jasper Lee, are here to help—read on to learn more about ingrown toenails and how we can help.
Ingrown toenails commonly arise from the excessive trimming of toenails, carelessly picking at them, or receiving improper pedicures that are performed so that the nails are short and skin is softened, as this provides all of the circumstances for the nail to grow into the sides and pierce the skin.
Improper footwear can also affect the nail/skin balance, and either push down improperly on the nail or cause swelling in the surrounding area on the toe. The constant repeated pressure and possible trauma to the foot make athletes particularly vulnerable to this condition.
Left untreated, some ingrown toenails may cause infections, especially with the prevalence of bacteria under toenails. The pierced skin may also develop a deep tissue infection, which may lead to a bone infection, as well. Complications like this pose a great risk, and your San Francisco podiatrist should be seen immediately.
The best treatment is preventative:
If you do get develop an ingrown nail, soak your feet in warm, soapy water several times a day, and contact your podiatrist if you suspect that there may be an infection.
In advanced cases, where the toenail has grown far too deep into skin or tissue, the ingrown nail may be removed surgically.
It's important to check with a podiatrist to confirm that you have the best footwear and hygiene to avoid this condition. The podiatrists of Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco, CA, can help treat these distressing cases as well as offer preventative care to avoid such discomfort. Call us today at (415) 731-6700.
Spending a little extra time on foot care can help you protect your health if you have diabetes. Diabetic foot care, provided by your San Francisco, CA, podiatrists, Drs. Daniel Alberts, Richard Rolfes and Jasper Lee of Stonestown Podiatry Group, is the key to reducing your risk of infection and foot and leg issues.
Why foot care is crucial if you have diabetes
Diabetes may slow healing time and affect your body's ability to fight infections. Even a minor scrape or cut can lead to a serious infection that could jeopardize your foot or leg.
Peripheral neuropathy, a condition that causes numbness in the feet, can make it impossible to feel pain in your feet or even notice that your shoes are uncomfortably tight. Numbness is more likely to occur if you've had diabetes for a long time or if the disease isn't well-controlled.
Home foot exams and visits to your San Francisco podiatrist can prevent minor issues from becoming more serious and ensure that infections are promptly diagnosed and treated.
What you can do to protect your feet
Daily self-exams allow you to spot early signs of trouble. For example, a red mark on your foot may be a sign that your shoes don't fit comfortably. Wearing a different pair of shoes can prevent the mark from eventually becoming a blister. If you do notice a blister, adding a protective bandage, in addition to switching your shoes, will reduce the risk that it will burst.
Call your foot doctor immediately if you notice any of these signs and symptoms:
Don't try to treat corns, calluses, plantar warts, or ingrown toenails at home. Although these conditions may seem minor, they can increase your risk of infection.
Need care? Give us a call
Don't neglect your feet! Call your San Francisco, CA, podiatrists, Drs. Daniel Alberts, Richard Rolfesm, and Jasper Lee of Stonestown Podiatry Group, at (415) 731-6700 to schedule an appointment.
Are you struggling with a bunion? Your chances of having this foot deformity escalate with age. To learn more about these unsightly and painful problems, read some FAQs prepared by Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco. Dr. Daniel Alberts, Dr. Richard Rolfes, and Dr. Jasper Lee provide care to scores of people with bunions and many other foot and ankle issues.
What is a bunion?
Bunion is the common term for an acquired foot deformity known as Hallux valgus. Typically a bony bump on the inside surface of the foot at the base of the big toe, a bunion can be painful, red, swollen, and an impediment to mobility. The big toe may rotate or turn toward the second or even third toes.
How does my foot doctor know I have one?
Your San Francisco foot doctor diagnoses bunions by visual examination, X-rays, and sometimes, gait analysis to evaluate how you place the foot on the ground when walking.
What causes bunions?
Many factors do. Heredity and age (over 40 and especially, over 65) play a role. More importantly, tight shoes with high heels seem to shift significant weight and pressure on the forefoot, contributing to bunion formation over time, says the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA). Additionally, some people have flat arches which stress the bones of the forefoot and also may overpronate their feet as they walk or run. (Overpronation is a gait defect in which the foot rolls toward the midline with each step). Finally, trauma to the foot can lead to bunion formation.
Do other deformities accompany bunions?
Sometimes people also develop claw-like hammertoes on toes two through five. Also, corn and callus formation is common where the bunion rubs against the inside of the shoe and also on the bottom of the foot.
Do I have to have surgery?
No, surgery is usually the last option. Your podiatrist likely will try a treatment plan involving far less invasive treatments you can incorporate into your daily routine.
What are my treatment options?
They may include:
Find out more
For more information on bunions or to come in for a complete foot exam with Dr. Alberts, Dr. Lee, or Dr. Rolfes, call Stonestown Podiatry Group in San Francisco, CA, at (415) 731-6700.
5 Treatment Options for Heel Pain in San Francisco,
Heel pain is one of the most common foot complaints among people. Heel pain can have causes that aren't due to underlying disease. Examples include ill-fitting shoes, trauma, standing for long periods, and overuse such as long walks or marathons. Led by Dr. Daniel Alberts, Dr. Richard Rolfes, and Dr. Jasper Lee, Stonestown Podiatry Group (located in San Francisco, CA) offers treatments for heel pain. Read on to learn about 5 treatment options for heel pain.
1. Medications. Heel pain may respond to treatment with medications such as naproxen (Aleve), ibuprofen (Advil), and acetaminophen (Tylenol). You can also get relief of heel pain with targeted topical pain medications from your podiatrist. Be safe with medications. It's important to follow your podiatrist's directions when taking medicine.
2. Orthotic Devices. Podiatrists use customized orthotics to treat heel pain. Customized orthotics are specially-made devices designed to support and comfort your feet. Studies have shown that customized orthotics reduce foot pain, improve function, and reduce risk of injury.
3. Cortisone Shots. Cortisone injections can be used to relieve heel pain and reduce swelling. Cortisone injections allow podiatrists to deliver a high dose of medication directly to the problem area. The injections usually comprise a corticosteroid medication and local anesthetic. You can get cortisone shots at your podiatrist's office.
4. Stretches. Podiatrists often prescribe stretching exercises for various foot conditions. Research shows that stretching exercises relieve foot pain, improve function, and reduce swelling. Stretching exercises are easy to do and should be done on a daily basis to keep heel pain at bay.
5. Night Splints. Night splints are also used to treat heel pain. Night splints, which you wear while you sleep, hold your feet in a neutral position, thereby helping to reduce morning pain. They stretch the plantar fascia ligament and Achilles tendon and keep them from getting tight during the night. Night splints tend to work really well. And once your pain is gone, you can stop wearing them.
If you want freedom from pain, call Stonestown Podiatry Group at (415) 731-6700 today to schedule an appointment in San Francisco, CA. Our treatments bring real relief to heel pain sufferers. You will experience exemplary service and state-of-the-art care at Stonestown Podiatry Group!
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