My Blog

Posts for: December, 2012

By Howard Schaengold, DPM
December 17, 2012
Tags: Aching Feet   Gout   arthritis   uric acid  


Foot Pains“Oh, my aching feet!” How many times have you found yourself yelling, “Oh, my aching feet,” but then shrugged it off, figuring that aching feet are a natural part of life? You don’t have to put up with aching feet.  Your podiatrist in Sammamish urges you to not ignore that ache in your feet.  When pain occurs, it is the first sign that something isn’t right, so a trip to Howard Schaengold, DPM is in order.

Gout is a form of arthritis, and it can often cause extreme pain to your feet.  Approximately one million Americans suffer from gout, and although its source is a systemic problem within the body, there are some suggestions for how to treat gout that may help reduce your chance of having a gout flare-up. 

Diagnosis and Treatment

Because the joint inflammation of gout can resemble that of a joint infection or other form of arthritis, diagnosing gout requires removing a small amount of fluid from the joint and examining it for uric acid crystals.  Once diagnosis is made, your podiatrist in Sammamish can recommend a gout treatment plan to help:

  • Stop acute attacks
  • Rapidly relieve pain and inflammation
  • Avert future attacks
  • Prevent the development of tophi, kidney stones and kidney disease   

Gout treatment will most likely involve anti-inflammatory medications to relieve acute pain and inflammation, as well as urate-lowering drugs to control urate levels and prevent future attacks.

Other gout treatment strategies might include the following:

  • Avoid foods with high purines, such as organ meats, anchovies, shellfish, bacon and gravies, and increasing intake of dairy foods.
  • Avoid alcohol, which increases the production of urate and impairs excretion
  • Lose weight to reduce blood urate levels
  • Avoid medications that contribute to hyperuricema, including diuretics

With proper treatment by Dr. Howard Schaengold of Plateau Foot & Ankle Clinic, gout is one of the most controllable forms of arthritis.  So when pain occurs, don’t just deal with it, seek treatment immediately. 


By Howard Schaengold, DPM
December 03, 2012
Category: Foot Care
Broken LegWhen people think of osteoporosis we may think of it in relation to the spine and hips—quite possibly the wrists and ribs, as well.  However, osteoporosis can also affect your feet.  In fact, seemingly unexplained foot fractures may be an early indication that you have osteoporosis.  
 
Osteoporosis means, “porous bones,” or that they are losing their density—making your bones thinner and easily breakable.  Foot fractures from osteoporosis can come in the form of stress fractures, which are tiny fractures that cause small cracks in your feet. Because of the lack of structure to the bones, they become weak, which can lead to fractures.  
 
In the advanced stages, fractures can happen from a simple thing like getting out of bed in the morning.  These fractures can occur anywhere, but most commonly occur in the neck, low back, hip, wrists and feet.  For the feet, these fractures often occur with repetitive small trauma due to wearing a unsupportive shoes, such as flip-flops.  With the loss of structure comes the collapse of joints in the feet, which can cause arthritis and pain.  Fractures in the feet from osteoporosis can range from small stresses in the bone to large displaced breaks that require surgery. However, surgery for osteoporotic patients can be a challenge.  
 
The sooner you deal with stress fractures the better.  If you have pain in your feet that seems beyond any normal kind of soreness, you should visit your podiatrist in Sammamish for further diagnosis and treatment.  
 

What do I do?

The general advice for aging people is to make sure you have enough calcium and vitamin D in your diet.  Exercise is also vital for increasing bone strength and to protect you against these painful fractures.  Any type of activities in which you move is good—walking, running, swimming, dancing and even bowling can be just what you need to strengthen your bones.  If you have foot issues and are unsure of how much your feet can take, talk to your podiatrist at Plateau Foot & Ankle Clinic.  
 
Be sure to choose shoes that offer proper support to your feet and ankles, as well.  Your podiatrist in Sammamish might recommend orthotics to give you that extra support to your arches.  Even if your bones are not affected by osteoporosis, orthotics can still help you by providing extra stability that may save you from a fall that could break other bones.  
 
Your feet play an important role in making aging easy and less painful.  Avoid dangers of osteoporosis by taking care of your overall health and paying attention to your feet! If you have any foot problems or pain, contact Howard Schaengold, DPM for proper diagnosis and treatment.